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Amazon fined €32m for ‘excessive’ employee monitoring | Ashleigh Webber

Amazon has been fined €32m (£27m) for ‘excessively monitoring’ employees in its warehouses in France.

Amazon France Logistique, which employs around 20,000 people at the online retail giant’s French warehouses, was found to have operated an “excessively intrusive” system for monitoring work performance and breaks, according to the French data protection authority CNIL.

Each employee was given a scanner to document certain tasks, such as storing or removing an item from a shelf or packing and item. Scans were used to provide an indication of the quality of work, productivity, and periods of inactivity.

CNIL launched an investigation into how the data from the scanners was being used following complaints from employees.

It said it was unlawful to set up a system measuring work performance with such accuracy, which it said would potentially require employees to justify every break or interruption.

The speed at which items were scanned was also measured, based on the principle that scanning items in quick succession, less than 1.25 seconds after the previous one, would increase the risk of error.

The regulator also considered it excessive for Amazon to keep the data collected by the system for all employees and temporary staff for 31 days.

Amazon said that it “strongly disagrees with the CNIL’s conclusions which are factually incorrect”, and said it reserved the right to appeal.

“Warehouse management systems are industry standard and are necessary for…

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