How would you react if you found out your employer knew your whereabouts every second of the day? Former sales executive Myrna Arias reacted by uninstalling the app that was tracking her every move, but doing so cost her a job, reports Ars Technica.
Arias worked for Intermex, a money transfer service that specialized in money transfers to Latin America. Her supervisor, John Stubits, required Arias and her colleagues to download Xora, a job management app for their company-issued iPhones.
After researching the app, Arias found that Xora tracked all of the employees’ whereabouts, even when they were not working. Stubits even occasionally bragged to others about how he knew where his subordinates were at all hours. He also boasted that he knows how fast they were driving and which roads they took to arrive at a certain destination.
Arias then did what you would probably do if you were in her situation: uninstall the app. However, this resulted in her subsequent firing. Now, Arias is fighting back by filing a lawsuit against Intermex. Seeking $500,000 in damages, the suit alleges Intermex is guilty of invasion of privacy, retaliation, and unfair business practices, in addition to other violations.
In the lawsuit, Arias admitted she had no issue with the app’s GPS function while she was working, but she objects to its function remaining on during the weekends, when she wasn’t working. Even if the app had a “clock-in/out” feature, this feature would not stop the app’s GPS monitoring, according to Gail Glick, Arias’ attorney.
Regardless of which side wins the lawsuit, one thing is clear: It’s rather weird that a job would keep tabs on employees the way Intermex has with theirs. Also interesting is whether those other employees who also had to download Xora will speak out against Intermex the same way Arias is. We’ll keep an eye on the case as it unfolds in the near future.