Train the Staff

Train the Staff

Effective policies and rules for use of surveillance tools must be accompanied by comprehensive training.

Training is everything

Mark Twain
Description: 

It is not enough to simply have appropriate policies, rules, and training for the use of surveillance tools.  These must be accompanied by a comprehensive program for training anyone with access to the tools or information collected from the tools.  These training programs must be reinforced by routine audits and mechanisms for disciplining infractions.

Employees should walk away from this training with a firm understanding of the risks of government surveillance and  specific protections that are in place.

Training programs also should inform participants  on how to raise concerns about  misuse and civil liberties violations, and provide clear avenues for whistleblowing.  Participants should be encouraged to provide feedback on the policies and procedures and on the training programs. Training should also inform participants of the records and audit materials that must be generated by any use of the surveillance tools or by access to surveillance data.

Training must emphasize civil liberties concerns. The risks of surveillance be outlined so as to highlight the importance of cautious and restrained use. In addition, training should seek to ensure that discrimination and bias do not factor into surveillance decisions.

All participants should be informed of the consequences of violating  policies and procedures for surveillance.

QUESTIONS TO ASK

  • Is the technology or surveillance program accompanied by training for applicable employees?
  • Does the training emphasize privacy concerns and civil liberties risks?
  • Does the training address record-keeping and audit requirements?
  • Does the training provide participants with information on reporting issues and whistle blowing?
  • Does the training address discrimination and bias?

Examples of Use

  • Map of California
    Location:: 
    San Francisco, CA
    ACLU exposes biases in surveillance training procedures

    The FBI has maintained a number of training materials related to intelligence and surveillance that epitomize failure to implement meaningful training that protects civil liberties. FOIA litigation brought by the ACLU of Northern California, the Asian Law Caucus, and the San Francisco Bay Guardian uncovered factually inaccurate FBI training materials that demonstrated strong ethnic and religious bias and encouraged discriminatory surveillance.