South Dakota Increases Statewide Criminal and County Criminal Court Fees

Wed, March 20th, 2013 - 11:40 am - By Gordon Basichis

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For those conducting background checks for employment screening, please be aware of the following–

South Dakota has increased its statewide and county criminal court fees…South Dakota has increased from $15 to $20

Another Case of Employee Theft

Wed, March 20th, 2013 - 10:23 am - By Gordon Basichis

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Employee theft has been on the increase, especially after the economic downturn.  Employee theft can not only prove damaging to your business through loss of funds and proprietary data, but it can dramatically hurt employee morale and instill fear and lack of confidence in your customers.   The collateral damage created by employee theft is one of the reasons that some companies will try to sweep it under the rug.  Sometimes you can sweep it under the rug, and sometimes the damage is too great for discretion, and then sometimes it goes public.  Not good.

Background checks can assist employers in determining if a job applicant had prior criminal records or there are indicators in his history, references, lies about education, whatever, that he may have a penchant to steal.   But while background checks are useful for employment screening, let’s face it, there is a first time for everything.  I have written about employee theft on a number of occasions.  One such article is When Employees Rob You Blind, which by the title should indicate the content.

So now we have but one more white collar crime.  For employment screening purposes, white collar crimes are best searched at the county criminal level but also the federal criminal records searches and federal civil records searches.  Often, while the suspect is accused of a crime, the U.S. Attorney will move the case from criminal court to civil court where he hopes, especially with complex cases, he can get a conviction.  It takes twelve jurors to convict in criminal court, but only eight jurors to convict in civil court.

In this instance, a former commodities broker stole over $215 million from his client’s funds.  He is awaiting sentencing.   The crime took place in Iowa, a long way from Wall Street.  But embezzlement and financial malfeasance is universal.   As our the thieves who are convicted.

According to the article in USA Today….”Russell Wasendorf Sr. will be sentenced on Thursday for stealing $215.5 million in customer funds from Peregrine Financial Group, the commodities brokerage he ran for many years out of Cedar Falls, Iowa. Over the course of that time, Wasendorf’s crimes affected the more than 10,000 investors who traded via Peregrine as well as the 300 employees who lost their jobs after he filed for bankruptcy. Wasendorf faces life in prison. His sentencing follows a guilty plea entered on Sept. 17 on four felony charges, including mail fraud, embezzlement of customer funds, and two counts of lying to regulators. Experts say the Wasendorf case highlights the need for better regulation of futures and commodities trading. Bart Chilton, a commissioner at the U.S. Commodities Future Trading Commission, has asked Congress to raise the fine for each instance of misconduct from $140,000 per violation to $1 million per individual and $10 million for an institution.”

Cracking Down on Cybertheft

Mon, March 18th, 2013 - 1:27 pm - By Gordon Basichis

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Cybertheft is happening big time.   Cybertheft is costly and potentially destructive to a company.   The business is violated where its proprietary data, its information regarding research and development, and its list of clients and their sensitive information can be seriously compromised.

Cybertheft occurs on a daily basis.  Many businesses refuse to acknowledge the depth and severity of this crime or admit their security has been compromised.

The United States is beginning to crackdown on cybertheft.   According to a  Reuters report in the Denver Post, the 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals, in New York, revived an old lawsuit regarding a serious incident of cybertheft.  According to the article, this ruling will make it easier for U.S. companies to crack down on cybertheft even when the thieves themselves are outside the country.

Her here is part of the article…”The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York on Wednesday ruled that a Denver-based chemical company’s lawsuit against a former account manager accused of unauthorized computer access and the misappropriation of trade secrets can proceed, overturning a ruling by a lower court. Wednesday’s ruling means that MacDermid Inc. may pursue civil damages claims against former MacDermid Chemicals account manager Jackie Deiter under Connecticut state law, even though she carried out her alleged theft of the company’s trade secrets from her home in the Toronto area. Connecticut law is applicable in this case because the trade secrets that Deiter allegedly stole were stored on a server located in the state. The ruling could make it easier to crackdown on computer theft that is carried out remotely, including from locations outside of the U.S. Deiter, who worked for MacDermid Chemicals from May 2008 until she was fired for reasons unrelated to the case in April 2011, stands accused of e-mailing customer data, laboratory reports, and pricing lists taken from the company’s server in Connecticut. Deiter has said that she did send the e-mails containing the information and documents in question but said that she did so in the course of her job, not as part of an effort to steal trade secrets.”

Blueseed is Creating a Unique Way of Dealing with the H1-B Immigration Worker Logjam

Wed, March 13th, 2013 - 9:59 am - By Gordon Basichis

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Talk to employers, especially those in technology, about the difficulty of hiring foreign workers for highly skilled job and nearly every one of them will complain about the indecipherable logjam in obtaining for these employment candidates their legal immigration status.   There is a pervasive logjam for H1-B visas.  As some complain, we have a plethora of unskilled workers, yet the more highly skilled jobs go unfilled, because employers can’t get visas for foreign workers.

Some of these employment candidates go to school in the United States, but after college must return to their native countries due to the delays in getting work visas.

So two guys from the Silicon Valley thought of Blueseed.   Skilled workers reside on a ship in international waters and with business tourism visas, they could ferry back and forth to the Silicon Valley once or twice a week.   This is innovation, the kind when a need is perceived and the developers deliver a solution.   This, I should add, is a solution that should gain a lot of attention.

According the the article in the Los Angeles Times…”Two Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, frustrated by the shortage of visas that keep some of the world’s brightest science and engineering minds from building companies on dry land, have hatched a plan to build a start-up colony in the middle of the Pacific.”

Personally, I love to see this kind of innovation.  Way to go guys.

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