By Ian Bush

by KYW’s Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Better safe than sorry: you should always assume your computer activity at work is being monitored. But there are new ways for the boss to peer over your shoulder while staying out of sight.

It’s all about metadata — the kind of stuff Edward Snowden warned us the government was collecting is now ripe for your supervisor.

“This can be anything like when you swipe in using a keycard or when you send an email,” to the messages you answer or avoid and the files you access, says Timothy Revell. He wrote about the technology in New Scientist magazine.

This artificial intelligence is billed as a boon for corporate security and improving worker productivity.

“The thing is, all of that additional metadata can actually reveal a lot about you,” Revell says. “This is where things start to border on, perhaps, infringement of your personal rights.”

It may be telling that StatusToday, one startup offering this service, is backed by British spy agency GCHQ.

“I think the most important thing is to discuss these issues out in the open and work out to what extent we’re willing to give up a certain amount of personal privacy at work in exchange for protecting important data to the company,” Revell says.