Vermont to Monitor State Employees for Porn, Gambling Activity

Written by Michael F. on 2010-05-04 at 12:53
American Gambling Laws - GamingZion
In a move that Senator Vince Illuzzi has called “Orwellian”, the US state of Vermont has proposed installing an internet monitoring and filtration system to control the online activities of state employees.  

The system is designed to proactively block certain categories of websites, but also to monitor the internet use of all employees while they work. At a cost of $120,000 the software will attempt to prevent State employees from viewing pornography, accessing online gambling sites in the USA, streaming internet radio, and betting on or viewing fantasy sports leagues. In all, there are 28 categories of sites that will be blocked.  

The purpose behind the blocks is not to comply with American gambling laws or to pass judgment on people who access adult site – the goal is simply to keep accessing websites that are deemed inappropriate for a work environment. 

This proposed blocking of websites is upsetting to some, but it is not what is causing so much controversy. Instead, the problem is that the software will also monitor everything that State employees do while on the internet at work.  

"To simply monitor every employee every minute of the day without any reasonable suspicion, no evidence whatsoever there's been any misconduct, that's contrary to our policy and our society we've created for ourselves in Vermont," said State Senator Vince Illuzzi.

David Tucker of Vermont's Innovation & Information Commissioner defends the plan, and feels the criticism is unfounded. “There's always going to be a few bad apples that are taking technology in a way they shouldn't,” he says.  

If the plan is approved, the software will be installed sometime later this year. It will only be put on certain computers – the machines used by lawmakers will still offer complete and unfiltered access to the internet. 

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