Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Underscores Need for Better Work Place Information Policies

News coverage about the recent decision in U.S. v. Nosal heralds the decision as preventing the government from going after employees who use company computers to check their Facebook status or the latest sports scores. But employers need to know that this decision puts the onus on businesses to strengthen protections for confidential information.

The Computer Fraud & Abuse Act (CFAA) is a 1984 anti-hacking law that prohibits someone from accessing a computer either “without authorization” or by “exceeding authorized access.” In Nosal, the government was using this law to prosecute Nosal’s theft of information from his ex-employer by using his old co-workers who were still employed to access the sensitive information. In its decision, the court found in favor of Nosal because Nosal’s old co-workers still had permission to access the information, and thus there was no unauthorized access.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

Written by:

Published In:

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Robert Freedman - Partner at Tharpe & Howell, LLP | Attorney Advertising

Don't miss a thing! Build a custom news brief:

Read fresh new writing on compliance, cybersecurity, Dodd-Frank, whistleblowers, social media, hiring & firing, patent reform, the NLRB, Obamacare, the SEC…

…or whatever matters the most to you. Follow authors, firms, and topics on JD Supra.

Create your news brief now - it's free and easy »

All the intelligence you need, in one easy email:

Great! Your first step to building an email digest of JD Supra authors and topics. Log in with LinkedIn so we can start sending your digest...

Sign up for your custom alerts now, using LinkedIn ›

* With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name.