Invasion of Privacy


Dear Dharma,

Your column is so great! Your advice is very practical and I love your sense of humour!

I have a rather odd problem and I am hoping you can help me. I walked into my office today to find my supervisor going through my cell phone, reading the text messages from my boyfriend!

There was nothing racy and I hadn’t been complaining about my job (thank goodness) but I was so shocked I didn’t know what to say to her! I have tightened up the security on my phone but wonder if I should confront my boss about this or just keep a better watch on my personal correspondence?

Ain’t Nobody’s Business

Dear Nobody’s Business,

Thank you for the kind words – it’s your questions that keep Dharma fresh and sassy, so keep them coming!

It feels like the answer to this should be to confront your boss, as this type of behaviour is way inappropriate, completely over the line and unprofessional.

Except that I don’t know what will be accomplished by addressing her directly, since she’s already proven to be inappropriate and unprofessional.

You haven’t mentioned any other characteristics of your boss, so I don’t know if your work environment is otherwise reasonable.  Was this just a one off weird thing she did, or is there another letter to Dharma already in the works about all the other stuff?

If you enjoy your job, and think this was a random act of WTF, then I think you have already taken the appropriate measures by beefing up security on your phone – hopefully that means an ironclad password and some kind of wickedly loud siren should someone attempt to hack in.

I know this seems like turning a blind eye and letting her get away with it, but I just think that if you confront her, nothing much will be achieved except creating awkwardness and tension where it need not be.

I wonder what Dharma’s readers think – take the poll below and let us know!



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  • Anonymous says:

    What am I missing here? How do you not say something when you catch your boss going through your texts….? Seriously, what was said, and unless your company is paying for your phone, they have no right!!!!!

    • Dharma says:

      Totally agree that they had no right, but awkward once it’s happened, right? Can’t undo what’s already done.
      And I ALSO wondered the same thing – like, how did this go down… you walked in, your boss is going through your phone, and nothing is said??

      Thanks for the comment!

Whether you agree with Dharma or think she missed the mark on this one, leave a Comment!

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