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Using personal email addresses for work isn’t uncommon

Tracey Samuelson Mar 4, 2015
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Hillary Clinton used a personal email account while Secretary of State instead of an official government address – a possible breach of open-records laws which will likely be much-discussed during the 2016 presidential campaign.

But setting aside Clinton and the particulars of her case, to what extent is this an issue in the corporate world?

Using a personal email for work is fairly common and often driven by convenience, says Jill Fisch, a law professor at the University of Pennsylvania. John Challenger, the CEO of the outplacement and research firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc., says there’s often not a strict boundary between work and personal life these days. 

Still, many companies try to make employees use their email to preserve records or because it may be more secure. 

In regulated industries, using work email is a must, says Michael Rivera, chair of Venable LLP’s Securities Enforcement and Compliance Practice.

“Particularly broker dealers, for example, they have to have a system in place to capture every single email that comes in and out of that firm to be able to satisfy their obligations to retain emails.”

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