A recent JPY survey illustrates how little understanding lies within the UK workforce over their non-existent rights to privacy when using email at work.

The research was carried out to assist JPY's development of Mail Robot X, an email system that manages email privacy while promoting email collaboration.

The survey reveals that 45 per cent of business users are unaware of management access rights to business email, and that 60 per cent have documents that could cause embarrassment.

The common view of email is that it is a personal and private form of communication, even at work. Research shows that 45 per cent of people are unaware that business email is not private. Almost half of that number were adamant that the company had no right to access their email.

The truth is, businesses are responsible for any email on the business email system. This means they not only are required to have access to all business email, they are legally responsible for anything sent through it.

Most business email users appear to forget that business email isn't private. Around 60 per cent of business email users would have concerns about other colleagues having access to their email.

The survey also revealed that email is commonly used for collaboration. Over 40 per cent of people surveyed said they used email to collaborate and share documents with colleagues. This was more than any other form of collaboration.

JPY email expert Dr John Yardley said: "So much valuable information gets locked into individuals email accounts, and it could be so much more useful if it were shared. Privacy concerns about sharing that information are ill informed, as business email is not private anyway. Mail Robot X helps free that valuable information, while separating the personal mail from the public gaze".

Mail Robot X holds an archive of all business email, searchable from all employees, which makes collaboration and information sharing seamless.