Loose Lips, Sink Ships.

A very common mistake made by employers is to allow an employee investigation to become so informal and disorganized that managers and employees learn about the nature of an investigation. The individual(s) who learn of such facts directly or through the rumor mill often relay embellished or false facts about the employee under investigation.  With the extreme popularity of social networking sites, wikis, blogs, and micro-blogs in recent years, this problem has been significantly exacerbated.  A vast army of millions literally blog or contribute social network content regularly, and some of those employees are likely posting information about their jobs on their personal Internet spaces.  The Internet allows for the easy and rapid publication of information to the global community for which as an employer, you may be liable. Rumors and other confidential or sensitive information shared about an employee garnered during an employee investigation can damage an employee’s reputation and an employee’s ability to further function in a company, locality, or in an entire industry potentially. While employers are limited to some degree with respect to rank and file employees, employers can control managers’ statements and how managers control information. Strict policies should govern the manner in which investigations are conducted and the managers should be educated properly. Information collected concerning the employee situation should be identified as confidential information and employees sharing such information in an unauthorized manner should be subject to discipline or termination.