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If a person where to use a website for online research while working for an employer and the employer willingly emailed them the password, would it be illegal to continue using that same website after being fired by the employer?
Hypothetically speaking, if I was fired from a small business and the owner of the business did not change the password to a website that charges on a "per use" basis for research, would it be illegal to log in to the website and use the service just the same as I had while employed? If The password to enter the site was freely given to me by the subscriber to the website in an email (that was saved) and there was no request or demand of any kind to stop use of the website, would any criminal laws be broken by using the website still? If the former employer contacted me 2 months later stating I stole $450.00 from him by using the site and offered to allow me to pay the amount to avoid him "having me arrested" would I really be facing any sort of criminal charges? Would any laws have been broken that I should be concerned of?
The website's terms and conditions clearly state that the person subscribed to the site is liable for any/all charges incurred using that username and password and the security of that username and password is the sole responsibility of the subscriber and should not be shared with anyone.
My concern is that this employer has simply found that they should have changed the password to the site BEFORE the charges occurred and now is making up a story to "scare" me into paying the $450 bill for the site. I have not been contacted by any law enforcement officer or been asked any questions regarding any investigation at all to this point.
No offense, but this question is about as dumb as it gets. If you're given a password by an employer for work, then it shouldn't be used for personal time whether or not you're employed. If you're fired then only someone with no brains would think it's fine to use it. It's not your account. Get your own.
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