Barbulescu v Romania [2016]

Posted In: Case Law
  • Case Reference
    ECtHR 61496/08
  • Legal Body
    European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR)
  • Type of Claim / Jurisdiction
    Data Protection and GDPR, Human Rights
Issues covered: Article 8 ECHR; European Convention on Human Rights; Right to Privacy; Monitoring Employees' Use of Internet and Emails

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that it may be permissible to monitor an employee's use of the internet, subject to the principles of proportionality and reasonableness. In this particular case, the claimant set up a Yahoo Messenger account for professional use but used it to send private emails to his brother. When the employer discovered this, the employee was dismissed.

The Court found by a majority of six to one that the domestic courts in Romania had struck a fair balance, within their margin of appreciation, between the applicant’s right to respect for private and family life, the home and correspondence under Article 8 and his employer’s interests.

The ECtHR concluded:

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This article is correct at 15/01/2016

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