China: OA办公管理系统的劳动法问题

Last Updated: 25 April 2019
Article by DeHeng Law Offices
Most Read Contributor in China, July 2019

"OA"(Office Automation的首字母缩写)办公管理系统一般是指利用计算机及网络技术实现组织体办公、运行、管理自动化的一种技术手段,目前已经发展成移动办公系统,例如企业微信OA系统。从其来源看,通常是由专业的软件开发商进行开发编程,然后将开发出的计算机应用软件产品许可给客户(用人单位)使用。目前,OA系统在企业及其他组织体的管理活动中已经获得广泛应用,成为用人单位在日常劳动人事管理中最为常用、高效的一种管理工具。这种新的劳动管理形式也带来了新的法律问题和法律风险,劳动人事争议中涉及到的OA证据认定问题也大量增加,但目前还没有明确的、直接的法律规范作为认定依据。本文拟在提炼笔者担任法官及律师办理相关案件的经验基础上,结合现行相关法律规范及判例的研究,对OA证据的司法认定以及用人单位劳动人事管理中防控OA系统相关法律风险问题进行探讨。

一、OA系统的特性

从技术角度看,OA办公系统主要具有以下特点 1

一是技术性。OA办公系统作为一种计算机应用软件,属于高科技范畴,需要依赖于一定的技术设备及技术手段才能实现。 二是脆弱性,其内容容易被更改或破坏,且难以追溯。三是无形性、无痕性,其实际是一堆按编程规则处理成的"1"和"0",看不见、摸不着,只有通过特定设备和技术才能展现。一般书证如果遭到改动,容易肉眼发现或者通过技术鉴定发现。但OA系统作为一种电子数据,即便被改动也可不留任何痕迹。

从证据法角度看,OA办公系统属于一种"电子数据"。"电子数据"是指"形成或者存储在电子介质中的信息 2"。可见,OA办公系统的技术属性完全符合相关法规对电子数据证据的定义。

二、OA证据的司法认定

然而,在民商事诉讼中,如何认定OA办公系统以及类似的电子数据作为证据的效力,对此仍没有明确统一、普遍适用的专门法律规范。因此,在司法实践中,原则上仍应适用一般证据的"四性"标准进行审查。"四性"即合法性、真实性、关联性与证明力。

合法性一般不易产生争议,只要能够说明电子数据的来源合法即可。关联性及证明力均是建立在证据具有真实性的基础和前提之上。一般而言,一旦确定了证据的真实性,其与待证事实是否具有法律上关联以及证明力的有无及大小问题就比较容易判别。

因此,跟传统种类的证据一样,关于OA等电子数据作为证据的真实性问题,仍然是当事人举证质证中的对抗焦点和司法审查的关键问题。但电子数据与书证、物证等传统种类证据显著不同的技术与法律特征,也造成对其真实性的证明及认定标准的特殊性,给当事人举证责任带来额外负担和风险。

根据《最高人民法院关于互联网法院审理案件若干问题的规定》(简称"《规定》")第十一条 3等相关司法解释,结合目前主流的司法实践做法,对于OA等电子证据真实性的司法审查,通常从以下几个角度进行。

一是电子数据所赖以存在的计算机软件、硬件是否可靠。

二是电子数据提取和固定过程是否可靠,是否可以重现。

三是电子数据的内容是否具有原始性,是否被改动过。

四是电子数据是否可以重现和验证。

可见,这些审查标准是不同于传统类型证据的审查标准的。那么,目前的司法实践是如何具体应用这些审查标准的呢?经检索中国裁判文书网,发现目前仅有一例判决涉及到《规定》第十一条的适用,而且是参照适用 4。在该案中,二审法院的逻辑是,如果提供可信时间戳证据的一方在取得证据时经过了有资质的时间戳认证机构的认证,则视为其完成了证明相关电子证据真实性的初步举证责任;如果对方对其真实性提出异议,则举证责任应发生转移,应由异议方证明可信时间戳为假,否则其应承担举证不能的后果。该案实际是对以上第四条标准的运用。法院认为,如果电子证据在形成或取得之时经过了有资质的认证机构的认证,即可初步证明该证据可以验证,从而发生举证责任的转移。

至于第一条标准,通常以相关硬件如服务器的运营者是否具有较高认可度为标准,一些知名的互联网企业所运营的数据通常会被认为更为可靠。但是,如果是境外的服务器上所存贮的电子数据,即便其运营商具有较高知名度或市场认可度,由于其系境外证据,在未经公证认证等法定程序之前也不能轻易采信其真实性。第二条标准是要求电子数据的内容可以通过一定途径再现出来。比如电子邮件,可以登陆邮箱后打开和展现。

第三条标准通常才是案件双方争议的重点,也是举证方需要重点攻克的法律障碍。常用的方法包括证据保全公证、网络或数据服务提供商的相关说明或证明,以及在数据生成过程中运用电子签名、可信时间戳、哈希值校验、区块链、第三方取证存证平台等前沿信息技术手段,通过这些手段生成和取得的数据,法院倾向于初步认可其具有真实性。

就OA数据作为劳动人事争议的证据而言,用人单位在劳动用工管理及日常业务运营中,如果使用OA系统,如上文所言,一般是从OA开发商购买其软件的许可使用权。而OA开发商所许可的OA软件通常在版权主管部门进行了登记备案,可信度较高。司法实践中比较容易符合上文关于电子数据真实性审查的第一条标准。

用人单位一旦获得OA的许可使用权,将成为掌控该系统的唯一权利人。由于OA系统作为电子数据具有技术依赖性及技术门槛,未获许可者,比如用人单位的普通员工一般没有操控的权限和能力。也就是说,即便用人单位允许其员工使用OA系统,对OA系统的最终控制权仍掌握在用人单位手中。实践中,用人单位通常会有专门技术人员对OA系统进修日常维护、监管。

三、当事人举证责任

由于OA系统控制权的上述特点,根据举证责任分配原则,在劳动人事争议中,通常由用人单位承担证明OA证据完整性、原始性及真实性的举证责任,也就是上文关于电子数据真实性审查的第二、第三条标准。用人单位对于OA系统相关属性具有较强的举证能力,从OA软件许可方那里掌握了必要技术;而员工作为被管理者,客观上不能够控制OA系统,没有相应的举证能力。因此,关于OA证据的争议,一般是由用人单位承担初步举证责任。具体而言:

首先,需要证明用人单位及员工双方都曾使用OA管理系统进行案涉活动。如果单位主张使用过而员工否认,则应由用人单位来举证证明自己单位确实使用OA系统进修劳动用工管理,并且该名员工确实被授权使用过OA系统。用人单位作为管理者,是OA系统的发起者及控制者,这就决定了用人单位应当承担此项举证责任。因此,用人单位应证明员工对OA具有使用权。

其次,需要证明案涉的OA证据具体内容与员工有关。例如,需要证明系争的证据内容是员工录入OA的内容,或者是公司其他人员在OA系统中针对该员工录入的数据,或者是适用于该员工的公司相关规章制度、通知或决定的内容。需注意的是,这听起来好像是在说证据的"关联性",其实不是。这实际上是为了确定争议的具体OA证据是否真实,但为此则首先需要确定其与该员工的关系。证据的关联性则是指证据与待证事实是否具有法律上的关系。对此,可以从OA记录的具体内容判断其是否与员工有关,一般不存在认定上的困难。

再次,需要证明作为证据的OA系统相关内容具有原始性,未经改动。如上所述,这常常是诉讼中的争议焦点。上文提到,OA系统作为电子数据,具有脆弱性,改动不留痕迹。一旦发生争议,对方有权推定其可能存在改动,因此举证责任人应证明其具有原始性及完整性,未经改动,这实际是举证责任的倒置。目前的司法实践中,完成该项举证责任的方式有四种:证明证据生成及提取过程使用了区块链、可信时间戳等前沿信息技术;司法技术鉴定;证据保全公证;对方认可。

对于单位提供OA证据,即使员工不予认可其真实性,一般也不必提出反证,因为举证责任本应在用人单位,用人单位应继续证明其具有完整性和原始性。此时,如果单位提供的OA证据是经过证据保全公证的,或者是使用了区块链等前沿信息技术的,此时员工如果否认OA证据的真实性,则举证责任可发生转移,改由员工来提供反证以便证明OA不真实,通常来讲这当然很难,除非进行技术鉴定。可见,公证或前沿信息技术手段对于确保电子证据原始性确实很重要。如果OA证据未办理公证也未使用前沿信息技术手段,则单位仍应以其他方式证明OA的真实性,例如申请专业技术鉴定。当然,如果对方当事人(员工)对OA真实性不持异议,则通常单位无需再举证。

相反,如果员工提供OA记录作为证据而单位对其真实性有异议,则单位必须提供反证,因为单位对OA证据的举证能力强;否则根据民事证据规则,单位需要承担举证不能的法律后果,导致员工提供的OA记录会被采信。

四、OA系统日常劳动法律风险防控

OA办公系统的技术、法律特征及司法实践的审查标准,反过来可用于指引用人单位有效预防和降低OA办公系统的相关法律风险,减少劳动人事争议中作为证据的效力瑕疵。

首先,最好的规避风险方法仍然是使用传统的非电子化管理手段。如果企业还没有使用OA系统,或者还没有必须使用OA的必要,则尽量不使用。如果劳动用工管理工作仍然主要采用传统的书面纸质管理形式,在发生争议时相关证据的表现形式为"书证",属于传统证据类型,不会产生上文提到的电子数据相关的证明障碍及责任。而一旦使用OA系统进行日常管理,即需要面临相关的证据效力瑕疵风险,并且目前而言难以找到根除风险的办法。

其次,如果企业因经营管理需要,必须使用OA系统,则可考虑以下办法尽量降低风险:

第一,采用成熟可靠的区块链、可信时间戳、电子签章等前沿信息技术。区块链技术已在部分领域获得认可和应用,甚至被司法机关采用和认可。例如,北京互联网法院采用的"天平链"存证平台就是一种区块链应用技术,法院为此专门发布了《北京互联网法院电子证据平台接入与管理规范》,当事人通过该法院电子诉讼平台所提交的材料全部通过"天平链"进行存证 5。广州和杭州的互联网法院同样使用了区块链技术进行日常审判管理。司法机关对区块链存证技术的认可与应用,在很大程度上认同了区块链技术存在的合法性及可推广性。有鉴于此,用人单位为确保OA系统存证效力,亦可使用带有成熟可靠的区块链应用技术的OA软件技术,则发生争议是OA证据的效力会有较好的保障。

第二,重要的劳动管理事项仍应采用传统形式,如纸质书面签字形式。当然,这并不排斥同时采用OA系统。例如,员工申请辞职,辞职申请除了在OA中提交外,还应在公司规章制度中或员工劳动合同中明确要求员工向公司提供书面纸质的辞职申请,并且可以规定,一旦公司收到纸质的申请,员工在OA中提交的辞职申请可以具有溯及力,这样可以较好地平衡劳资双方利益,促使员工积极提交纸质申请。另外,重要事项如调动工作申请、调整工资的决定或协议、医疗期相关手续、工伤或职业病相关文件、解除或终止劳动合同事项、竞业限制、保密义务、服务期等事项,相关法律手续也应当同时尽量要求员工采取书面纸质的传统形式进行。

第三,公司可专门的OA系统使用管理制度。由于OA系统强大、广泛的管理功能,不可避免涉及到员工某些切身利益,比如工资调整、岗位调整、纪律处分、离职等,因此OA管理制度应按《劳动合同法》第四条要求的"民主程序"进行制定和公告,确保其效力无瑕疵。内容方面,应主要明确OA系统授权使用人员的范围、方式、权限、流程,员工相关权利、义务、责任。OA系统使用管理制度从证据效力角度讲,还可以佐证公司确实实行OA系统进行劳动管理。

第四,在授权员工使用OA系统之前,员工应签署书面声明,明确其有权使用OA系统,同时有义务遵守OA系统的使用管理制度。更为重要的是,这类声明可载明每位员工使用OA所需要的用户名、手机号或其他必要信息,且仅有员工本人才可以设定和更改登录所需密匙,员工有义务保证密匙的安全。这跟公司向员工分配工作用电子邮箱地址的情形类似。另外,如果从技术上讲,一旦相关信息录入OA,将只有录入者才可以改动的话,则亦应让员工在书面声明中对此予以载明。一旦发生劳动争议,员工无法否认其使用OA系统的事实,也无法否认OA系统中其录入内容的真实性,从而为潜在诉讼中符合电子证据认证标准奠定了基础。

第五,强化日常管理中的存证意识,即证据保留意识。某些情况下,即便尚未发生争议,如有必要,也应采取证据保全公证、律师见证等预防措施,及时确保相关OA证据的原始性及真实性。例如,一旦员工在OA中提交电子版辞职申请而未按公司要求补交书面辞职申请,则应立即聘请公证机构对OA中的辞职申请进行证据保全公证,以防员工届时反悔不认。

第六,一旦发生劳动争议官司,如果单位OA系统未使用区块链、可信时间戳、电子签章等前沿信息技术,即应一方面对OA相关内容进行证据保全公证,以便届时可将举证责任转移给员工一方。另一方面,可联络OA应用软件的开发商,必要时由其提供相关的协议或出具证明,来证明OA系统的相关情况,以及其相关的技术性能特点。

最后,OA记录应当保存一定时间,以备可能发生的劳动争议之用。由于司法实践一般认为用人单位对于OA相关证据负有举证责任,一旦发生劳动争议而用人单位不能提供相关OA证据的话,将面临举证不能的不利后果。因此,所有的OA记录均应保存一定的年限,比如三年或者更长时间。

总之,OA办公系统作为一种电子数据证据类型,由于具有技术上的显著特征,造成法律属性具有某些有别于传统证据的特殊性,进而导致争讼中对其真实性的证明方式、方法及认证逻辑,均与传统类型的证据有别。相应地,用人单位在日常经营管理中使用OA系统时,可采取多种办法降低OA系统作为电子数据的证据瑕疵风险。

— 文中备注  —

Footnote

1详见高明、瞿文婷《律师视点22:新民诉法司法解释研究:关于电子证据相关新规定的解读》,在于http://www.360doc.com/content/15/0212/18/21849816_448184280.shtml .

22015年《最高人民法院关于适用《中华人民共和国民事诉讼法》的解释》第一百一十六条第二款:电子数据是指通过电子邮件、电子数据交换、网上聊天记录、博客、微博客、手机短信、电子签名、域名等形成或者存储在电子介质中的信息。

3第十一条:当事人对电子数据真实性提出异议的,互联网法院应当结合质证情况,审查判断电子数据生成、收集、存储、传输过程的真实性,并着重审查以下内容:

  (一)电子数据生成、收集、存储、传输所依赖的计算机系统等硬件、软件环境是否安全、可靠;

  (二)电子数据的生成主体和时间是否明确,表现内容是否清晰、客观、准确;

  (三)电子数据的存储、保管介质是否明确,保管方式和手段是否妥当;

  (四)电子数据提取和固定的主体、工具和方式是否可靠,提取过程是否可以重现;

  (五)电子数据的内容是否存在增加、删除、修改及不完整等情形;

  (六)电子数据是否可以通过特定形式得到验证。

  当事人提交的电子数据,通过电子签名、可信时间戳、哈希值校验、区块链等证据收集、固定和防篡改的技术手段或者通过电子取证存证平台认证,能够证明其真实性的,互联网法院应当确认。

  当事人可以申请具有专门知识的人就电子数据技术问题提出意见。互联网法院可以根据当事人申请或者依职权,委托鉴定电子数据的真实性或者调取其他相关证据进行核对。

4参见北京知识产权法院(2018)京73民终1999 号二审民事判决。该判决对于一审法院根据时间戳文件认定大公网科技公司存在侵权行为是否适当这一问题进行了论述,认为此问题应参照适用《规定》第十一条,"美丽视界公司提交的时间戳文件系联合信任时间戳服务中心制作,制作过程合法有效,大公网科技公司未提交足以质疑该时间戳文件真实性的有效证据,因此,本院对该时间戳文件记载的事实予以确认。" 载于中国裁判文书网http://wenshu.court.gov.cn/content/content?DocID=154f17bd-7b0e-4d02-8821-a9af00120826 ,2019年4月1日登陆。

5https://baijiahao.baidu.com/s?id=1620604772020748087&wfr=spider&for=pc。2019年4月1日登陆。

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