This article discusses that, in addition to civil liability that employment lawyers tend to be alert for in departing employee scenarios, departing employees can also be criminally liable for theft, misappropriation, or other crimes related to their employer's trade secrets or confidential information stored an employer's computer network. At the same time, employers may subject themselves to criminal or civil penalties when investigating departing employees. New developments under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Stored Communications Act, Electronic Communications Privacy Act, and various other laws are changing the legal landscape in this area, while the worldwide nature of electronic networks brings international law into play for employers and employees alike.
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