I’ve been asking myself the question of whether or not I’m allowed to record nannies on hidden camera while they’re supposed to be doing their job. My problem stems from a few incidents that I’ve seen in the past. Fortunately, there are ways to record and surveillance without violating any laws.
In one case, several nannies were using hidden video cameras to spy on the home-workers of one of the applicants. When confronted about the fact that they had been recording without permission, the workers said it wasn’t illegal to do so. The employer, however, was wondering if they should fire the employees because they’d already been caught stealing from the company. The court decided that it wasn’t illegal to spy on nannies, but that they could be disciplined for stealing something of value from the home-based business if they were caught in the act. This was a wise move on their part, considering that many nannies had already been carrying around large amount of additional insurance that would cover any unforeseen accidents while on the job.
Another situation arose when two different nannies were suspected of stealing from their employer’s home. The employees were aware that they were being filmed, but none of them said anything about it. The employer notified the local police, who arrested both nannies. This example demonstrates the important need for employees to understand that hidden video cameras don’t give them a free pass to commit legal theft. This is why it’s vital to keep hidden cameras out of reach of non-employees.
Another instance that occurred at my house involved two teenage boys. The boys were being watched over by their nanny, who happened to be the wife of our neighbor. Our boys were innocent of abusing the nanny, but their mother had hired the nanny to watch over them while her husband went to work. When the boys’ father returned from his vacation, the nanny called the boys’ father and told him that the boys were missing. The father called the police immediately, and the nanny soon left the house.
If these two examples aren’t enough to scare you away from hidden cameras, I don’t know what will. I remember hearing from an acquaintance who had received an email alerting him that Dish Network was installing video cameras at their homes. The alerting individual had previously written to Dish Network that he didn’t want his children watching television without him watching it. The fact that Dish Network was installing hidden video cameras in people’s homes without their permission is illegal and constitutes a serious abuse of power.
When considering whether it’s legal to use a nanny cam, the first question should be, is it legal for me to use a nanny camera? If you’re using one of these devices to monitor your children while you’re away, you should always have permission of the person you are installing the device to watch over them. It’s the law, and it’s the smart way to go. I’m not saying that if you feel that you need to protect your children, you shouldn’t use a nanny cam; however, you should have the consent of the person who will be seeing those pictures. You never know when you may need them!