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How to Detect a Mouse Jiggler? And Other Ways Employees Try to Trick Monitoring Software

How to Detect a Mouse Jiggler? And Other Ways Employees Try to Trick Monitoring Software

In this article, you’ll find out what tricks employees may turn to in order to try and trick monitoring software in the workplace, particularly using the example of mouse jigglers.

Have you ever come across a mention of a “mouse jiggler”? If not, it’s time for us to shed some light on the latest trick employees might turn to in order to try and outsmart workplace monitoring software. 

Ever since the turbulence of the pandemic has tremendously changed the work environment all over the world, the market of employee monitoring software has been steadily booming, with employers monitoring their team productivity like never before.

That doesn’t mean, though, that employees have welcomed this digital novelty with open arms. On the contrary, some of them still consider any monitoring to be an example of bossware and, thus, come up with ways to trick such software.

What Is a Mouse Jiggler?

As the name suggests, the basic purpose of a mouse jiggler is to simulate mouse movement. 

Mouse jigglers can come in a form of a plug-and-play device or a very simple piece of software, the entire function of which is to “fake” mouse input to the operating system and jiggle the mouse pointer back and forth.

And though a mouse jiggler may not help with the keyboard usage monitoring, it can trick the overall screen time monitoring and reduce the periods of inactivity.

Can A Mouse Jiggler Be Detected?

Mouse jigglers, designed with seemingly legitimate purpose of preventing computers from entering sleep mode, may actually pose security risks in certain situations. Since these tools can be exploited for unauthorized access or even security breaches, there is a tangible potential for their misuse.

Correct identification of mouse movement plays a vital role in optimizing company management and enhancing security measures. For various businesses, observing mouse movement tends to be integral to monitoring employee activity & engagement, ensuring their active involvement in assigned tasks.

And thus comes the question – can you catch in action those of your employees who turn to use mouse movers, and more specifically in terms of employee monitoring software – can it detect a mouse jiggler? 

To put it in most simple terms, whether or not you can detect a mouse mover depends on the kind of monitoring software your company uses.

If we’re talking about mouse jiggler apps, some companies have restrictions on downloading external software or using USB devices on company-issued laptops, which also makes the use of this trick much more challenging and the process of mouse jiggler detection much easier.

Mouse jigglers that come in a form of physical devices are usually made to operate quietly. However, if your monitoring software offers functionality that identifies external peripherals or unusual device activity, no mouse mover, no matter how stealthy it is, will go undetected.

For example, our Kickidler employee monitoring software has the option of screen video recording, which becomes incredibly useful in situations like these.

What’s more, with Kickidler you can spot inactive employees, even if they appear to be actively engaged on their PCs throughout the day. To see exactly what your team is doing at any given moment of a workday, simply utilize the online screen monitoring feature the software provides.

Other tools of our solution, such as a keylogger, productivity reports, and pop-up automatic notifications, come in handy when you want to detect and prevent employees from tricking the efficiency of monitoring.

Other Ways Employees Can Trick Monitoring Software

Managing employees, especially those working from home, requires a fair amount of trust from both employers and employees alike. Managers need to be able to count on the team members to complete their tasks on time in an efficient manner, and employees require the freedom to do their jobs without instances of micromanagement that leaves them anxious and disorganized.

And while employee monitoring software becomes helpful in situations like these, if employees decide to try and outwit the software, problems that go far beyond potentially missed deadlines can be created.

Here are a few quite popular ways employees may try and trick monitoring software so that you’ll be able to keep your guard up when implementing the monitoring software.

    Trick 1. Separate window with productive apps

This seemingly simple trick is especially popular among remote employees. An employee opens a work-related application (that the monitoring software deems to be productive) and leaves it up on the screen. 

Using this trick, they may take a break to check social media or even step away from the PC to do something else entirely without being detected, after all, they will appear to be engaged in work-related activity thanks to the opened window.

To catch an employee who’s using this trick, all it takes is to check the website and app usage report, which tracks how long employees spend on any website or app and could reveal any abnormal activity. You can then cross-check this report against videos Kickidler records of employees’ screens, quickly spotting team members with a lot of idle time. 

    Trick 2. Dual monitors

We actually have a real example of one of our clients who has experienced their remote team member trying to trick monitoring software this way.

An employee was using one monitor for work-related tasks, while the other one was dedicated to watching TV series. The simplest way to reveal this deception is to turn to the screen video recording feature once again, which allows to simultaneously monitor several screens connected to the same machine.

    Trick 3. Key sticking

Now, we’ve covered an instance of an employee trying to cheat monitoring software this way, too.

An employee would open a so-called “productive” app (such as Microsoft Word, for example), press down a key with a mug or some other heavy object and go on with their day, while a solution that was then used by the client would track this activity as productive. 

Kickidler doesn’t record key sticking as productive activity, rather it is logged as idleness. Other than that, online screen monitoring feature and screen video recording feature (once again) allow managers to check the activity of all your employees at any given time.

In Lieu of a Conclusion

To put it simply, mouse jigglers are tools that simulate mouse movement. They’ve recently become popular with employees who want to trick monitoring software and prevent it from tracking their inactivity. 

With monitoring software like Kickidler, employers can easily detect mouse jigglers (as well as other tricks) and take appropriate actions. By implementing properly equipped monitoring tools, employers can ensure the work environment in their company is as productive and transparent as possible.

Kickidler Employee Monitoring Software

Alicia Rubens

Content Marketer

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