IP - 07121-1/2021/563

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IP - 07121-1/2021/563
LogoSI.png
Authority: IP (Slovenia)
Jurisdiction: Slovenia
Relevant Law: Article 6(1)(f) GDPR
Article 77 ZVOP-1
Type: Advisory Opinion
Outcome: n/a
Decided: 22.03.2021
Published: 22.03.2021
Fine: None
Parties: n/a
National Case Number/Name: 07121-1/2021/563
European Case Law Identifier: n/a
Appeal: n/a
Original Language(s): Slovenian
Original Source: IP (in SL)
Initial Contributor: GDPR plus

The Slovenian DPA decided that covert video surveillance of employees is not permissible in any manner or under any circumstances.

English Summary[edit | edit source]

Facts[edit | edit source]

A company where an individual works first installed a surveillance camera in a visible place with markings, it is operated by the security service and the employees have received a declaration by their signature that they agree with the video surveillance. Now this individual has noticed another camera that is hidden and records employees at work and does not record valuable objects or premises.

Dispute[edit | edit source]

Holding[edit | edit source]

Covert video surveillance of employees is not permissible in any manner or under any circumstances. Indeed, employees must be informed in writing prior to the commencement of video surveillance within the work premises. This also means that a statement that one agrees to video surveillance (in the case of a camera previously placed in a conspicuous location) is not permissable. Employees cannot consent or refuse to consent to video surveillance, as the basis for such video surveillance is in the law (Article 77 of ZVOP-1), but they must be informed in writing in advance, which legally restricts video surveillance of workplaces.

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The Information Commissioner (hereinafter IP) received your letter by e-mail, explaining that the company you work for first installed a surveillance camera in a visible place with markings, it is operated by the security service and for which the employees received a statement to sign. to agree to video surveillance. Now you have noticed another camera, which is hidden and records workers in the workplace and does not record valuable objects or premises. When you confronted the employer with this, he referred to the fact that it was set up by the security service and that you signed the statement. You are wondering if such a camera layout is allowed and what you can do.

On the basis of the information you have provided to us, in accordance with Article 58 of Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 April 2016 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data Directive 95/46 / EC (hereinafter: the General Regulation on Data Protection), point 7 of the first paragraph of Article 49 of the Personal Data Protection Act (Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia, No. 94/07-UPB1, hereinafter ZVOP-1) and Article 2 of the Information Commissioner Act (Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia, No. 113/05, hereinafter ZInfP) provides us with our optional opinion on your issue.

The processing of personal data is permissible only if there is an appropriate legal basis for it. Article 6 of the General Regulation thus sets out the legal basis; among other things, processing is lawful if the consent of the individual is given, if the processing is necessary for the performance of the contract, to fulfill the legal obligation of the controller, to protect the vital interests of the individual, for public interest or legitimate interests of the controller (all under certain strict conditions).

The field of video surveillance is regulated separately in ZVOP-1, which in this part remains in force despite the adoption of the General Regulation, as it is a special, sectoral regulation. Article 77 of ZVOP-1 specifically regulates video surveillance within workplaces, which stipulates that video surveillance in such cases (ie inside workplaces) may be carried out only in exceptional cases when this is strictly necessary for the safety of people or property or for the protection of classified information. and trade secrets, and this purpose cannot be achieved by milder means. Video surveillance can be carried out only in those parts of the premises where it is necessary to protect the aforementioned interests. It is forbidden to carry out video surveillance in work areas outside the workplace, especially in changing rooms, elevators and toilets. Employees must be informed in writing in advance of the implementation of video surveillance in the workplace, and the employer must consult with the employer's representative trade union before the introduction of video surveillance in the workplace.

It follows from the foregoing that the secret recording of employees is in no way and under no circumstances permissible. Namely, employees must be informed in writing in advance before the start of video surveillance inside the workplace. This also means that a statement that you agree to video surveillance (for a previously placed camera in a conspicuous place) is not necessary in the sense that it is a matter of collecting worker consent. Workers cannot consent to or refuse consent to video surveillance, as the basis for such video surveillance is in law (Article 77 of ZVOP-1), but they must be informed in advance in writing, whereby video surveillance of workplaces is legally limited. We would also like to point out that in employment relationships, consent as a legal basis for the processing of personal data is valid only if it is informed and truly voluntary, ie if the employee can refuse or revoke it without any consequences for the employment relationship. Consent to the processing of personal data given in advance for unknown purposes, which could be arbitrarily extended, can in no way be a valid legal basis for the processing of personal data.

In summary, the conditions for the legal implementation of video surveillance in the workplace are as follows:

  • video surveillance must be essential for the safety of people or property or for the protection of classified information and business secrets;
  • the above purposes cannot be achieved by milder means;
  • video surveillance is prohibited outside the workplace (especially in changing rooms, elevators and toilets);
  • employees must be notified in writing in advance of the implementation of video surveillance;
  • the employer must consult with the employer's representative trade union before introducing video surveillance within the workplace.

If any secret recording or recording that is in conflict with the above conditions continues, you can also file an inspection report with the IP for violating the protection of personal data.