An interesting read on the use or misuse of WhatsApp in government. While this may appear removed from the corporate world that most of us inhabit, how much visibility do organisations really have of the “side” conversations happening on instant messaging Apps.  Also, how many employees fully appreciate that if these conversations take place, and are saved on a work issued device, they are no less discoverable than say email.

Most business have an IT policy which cover in varying degrees of detail the use of such Apps, however, how often are these simply read by new joiners and never revisited. Do employees understand after reading such a policy, that if instant messaging conversations are saved on their work phone, or to a cloud backup, they can normally be captured using the appropriate forensic tools and reviewed in much the same way as any other document.

A little bit of prevention can go a long way, and businesses should consider not just writing policies, but also explaining to their staff what can potentially be recovered and reviewed during the course of an investigation.  If this approach is adopted, people may well think twice before starting that side conversation in the first place.