Summary of “Working from home surveillance software for your boss”

In the weeks since social distancing lockdowns abruptly scattered the American workforce, businesses across the country have scrambled to find ways to keep their employees in line, packing their social calendars and tracking their productivity to ensure they’re telling the truth about working from home.
Thousands of companies now use monitoring software to record employees’ Web browsing and active work hours, dispatching the kinds of tools built for corporate offices into workers’ phones, computers and homes.
Many employees are probably working longer and more sporadic hours than ever before: NordVPN Teams, which runs virtual private networks for businesses, said in March it had seen working time in the United States climb from eight to 11 hours a day since the stay-at-home orders began.
Several companies allow managers to regularly capture images of workers’ screens and list employees by who is actively working and their hours worked over the previous seven days.
One system, InterGuard, can be installed in a hidden way on workers’ computers and creates a minute-by-minute timeline of every app and website they view, categorizing each as “Productive” or “Unproductive” and ranking workers by their “Productivity score.” The system alerts managers if workers do or say something suspicious: In a demo of the software shown to The Post, the words “Job,” “Client” and “File” were all flagged, just in case employees were looking elsewhere for work.
Pragli executives argue that emails and Slack messages, the traditional lifeblood of office communication, are socially unfulfilling: efficient but soulless, and powerless to combat the distractions and loneliness of working from home.
Pragli’s system measures employees’ keyboard and mouse usage to assess whether they’re actively working – any more than 15 seconds can shift a worker from ‘active’ to ‘idle’ – and allows anyone to instantly start a video conversation by clicking on another person’s face, similar to swinging by their desk in a real-world office.
At the High Plains Journal, one woman working from home with four kids gave her Pragli avatar a shock of white hair.

The orginal article.