SAN FRANCISCO — A split Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals today sided with prosecutors who want to use the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to go after an executive recruiter accused of acquiring information from a work computer to start a competing business.

The court reinstated a handful of counts against David Nosal after construing a part of the act — the phrase “exceeds authorized access” — to mean an employee runs afoul of the law when he violates the employer’s computer-access restrictions.

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