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Checking Facebook at work could become illegal

(LiveScience) Logging into Facebook, perusing eBay and surfing to other decidedly non-work related sites may not just upset your boss; it could also be a federal offense.

That’s according to two Boston College professors who recently authored a paper on how a broad interpretation of the 1986 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) could criminalize the routine behavior of every employee who uses a workplace computer in their job.

As the First, Fifth, Seventh and Eleventh Circuit Courts of Appeal interpret it, a breach of a company’s computer policy for example a ban on accessing dating sites and social media for example, also constitutes a violation of the CFAA.

The law was originally written to punish and deter criminal hacking, but as technology experts point out, innovation in technology has outpaced the laws that govern it.