Unemployed people will now have their online job searches and applications tracked remotely to see how much they’ve been searching.

However, the tracking will not be compulsory, according to The Telegraph, as tracking people’s online activity is prohibited under European Union law.

“If you choose not to take a job that matches you, then the adviser will look at your reasons, and if the adviser thinks ‘actually, these are pretty specious reasons’, he may call you in and say ‘I think you really need to be applying for these jobs’.” said Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith.

Those claiming job seeker’s allowance will be required to sign up for the government job site in 2013 “We have been clear that this is not mandatory yet and there will be no sanctions for not joining…but mandation will begin in the new year.” said Duncan Smith.

The potentially controversial scheme could lead to accusations of a Big Brother state. Figures show that around 700,000 job hunters and employees have signed up to the Universal Jobmatch so far.

A Channel 4 investigation (see video below) earlier this month revealed that hackers were able to steal information from CV’s uploaded to the website, leading to fears over online security and data protection.

The government has paid job search and recruitment website Monster £16.7m to set up the website. 

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