Tattleware Companies Make Employee Monitoring Software Possible

Rachel Curry - Author
By

Sep. 2 2022, Published 1:58 p.m. ET

In the era of quiet quitting, tattleware companies — or firms making employee monitoring software — get a bad rap. Still, some bosses live and breathe this kind of surveillance.

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What companies are making a mark in the tattleware (sometimes called bossware) industry with employee monitoring software?

Tattleware companies are central to the modern workforce — for better or worse.

A reported 60 percent of companies employing remote workers use some sort of monitoring software to track activity and productivity.

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On the surface, this software increases productivity. However, dig a bit further and you’ll find that tattleware can reduce employee vigilance and engagement. “Mix powerful technology with employees who feel their employers don’t trust them, and the groundwork is laid for a potential cyber threat,” wrote Eyal Benishti, founder and CEO of Ironscales.

Certain companies are well known in the tattleware space.

SentryPC is a computer monitoring and control software company that records employee activities, filters content, and schedules usage of certain features. SentryPC takes it further than employee monitoring. It also offers family and school monitoring software.

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ActivTrak focuses solely on workforce analytics. It avoids controversial practices like keystroke logging, email monitoring, camera accise, personal device monitoring, and video recording. Instead, ActivTrak offers time tracking, risk reporting, compliance, burnout prevention, technology adaptation, work trends, and more.

Because ActivTrak takes an “insight, not oversight” approach to employee monitoring this software has the potential to eliminate the negative aspects of tattleware. Still, it could be easy to cross lines and overasses the analytics in a way that constricts employees.

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Lakeside Software calls itself a “digital employee experience management” solution. Its monitoring product reportedly reduces employee downtime and closes more tickets. Lakeside Software says its solution is more technology-focused than surveillance-focused. According to its website, “Research and actual workplace experience overwhelmingly prove a major gap exists between what employees think of their digital experience, and the experience IT believes they are delivering.”

Currentware offers user activity monitoring, web filtering, and more. This company takes a more surveillance-focused approach to employee monitoring. Results like idle time, USB activities, app usage, PC power states, and web browsing all have a place with Currentware software.

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Sneek has been in the news for its role in snapping pictures of remote workers through their computer cameras without warning during the workday. Reporter Jessa Crispin wrote, “The photograph that Sneek takes can catch you doing pretty much anything — picking spinach out of your teeth, smelling your own armpit, or any of the other totally normal things human beings do when alone but that no one really wants documented and distributed.”

Tattleware companies aren't a public market staple — and that’s probably a good thing.

Employee monitoring software companies are largely privately held, which means retail investors can't access them on the public stock market.

This is likely a good thing. Tattleware as an industry is extremely controversial and could face growth-slowing regulation in the future. Any upsides to employee monitoring software can be found in the cloud technology and cybersecurity sectors, both of which are robust on the public market.

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