The Internet has become a fully integrated part of our society, touching many aspects of our business and personal lives. The Internet is so incredibly popular because it enables us to not only quickly access information from sources all over the world, but also transfer information quickly and easily. Businesses were quick in seeing the benefits the Internet would provide their companies. Soon after phrases like “The Web” and “Web Surfing” began to circulate, computers with Internet capabilities became as commonplace as pencils and post-it-notes on employees’ desks. The positive affects the Internet merit, also leave room for the Internet’s negative affects as well. Access to the Internet from an employee’s computer allows that employee to spend time viewing content from non-work related sites. This is in essence what the Internet abuse problem is – spending paid work-time on non-work related activities. Internet abuse problems have become as multitudinous as the ways of dealing with them; only recently have companies started to deal with and recognize these issues. First we will attempt to understand who is affected by the Internet abuse problem; then by looking at the statistics and examples regarding Internet abuse, we can begin understanding the size and consequences of this problem. Finally we will also see what companies and employees are doing about it.
WHO IS INVOLVED?
Those affected by the Internet abuse problem are companies, employees, and the consumer. According to Network Magazine1 companies lose 54 billion dollars a year because of Internet abuse. That is money companies need to make up somehow, through raising prices, decreasing salaries, or some other method of cost reduction. Compani...
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...tect companies and their employees from those that would abuse the Internet. Things like standards and guidelines can also be used to ensure that the Internet is used in the right way. What can companies do to help prevent these problems? They can use guidelines and policies to make sure managers and employees understand what is expected of them. What can mangers do? They can make sure that their employees understand the guidelines and policies that their company has put in place. What can employees do? They can strive to uphold standards and guidelines and work with the mindset that they are always being watched. This will make Internet monitoring software unnecessary. One thing is for sure; the Internet is not going anywhere. Because of this, companies, management, and other employees need to ensure that the Internet is used productively and appropriately.
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