How To Steal From Your Work.

  1. Never take anything that will be noticed right away. (Don't walk away with the network server, etc).
  2. If you are stealing something that doesn't appear to be used much, try moving it first to see if anyone even notices.
  3. Never ever let yourself be the prime suspect. (If everyone knows you are the only computer nerd at your work don't steal any computers).
  4. If another employee is retiring, quitting, etc, you should use that opportunity to its fullest. Anything that turns up missing will probably be blamed on the old employee.
  5. The same thing with new employees. (See #4).
A few things you can steal if you can't think of anything
  1. Always steal any software installation discs to any computers at your job. People may never notice these are missing at all. And if they do the computer in question may be replaced as broken if your management is clueless enough. (Allowing you to steal the old computer out of the storage closet or where ever they chuck it).
  2. Some more computer tips. (If you have enough time alone to do these). Switch out processors for slower ones. (Don't change the dip switch settings though leave them overclocked, eventually they will be replaced). Switch hard drives out for smaller ones. (Many work computers will only be using 200 - 300 megabytes of hard drive space anyway. Pull out unused expansion cards. Take printer cartridges also.
  3. For hotel workers. Build up a lifetime supply of towels, shampoo, soap, etc. Also people often leave things in rooms after they check out. Be sure and check the lost and found also.
  4. Fast food workers. Always be on the lookout for stacks free coupons, one stack of promo coupons can feed a person for a year. Mc Donalds workers should also try and snag a box of hashbrown wrappers every time there is a contest. (Box is very small, has 1000 wrappers inside with game pieces, and 1 in 3 win something).
  5. Gas Station Workers. Did you ever see those pack of cigarettes that are buy one get one free. You can just take the free one out of the sleeve and put the normal one back on the shelf. (The free ones are not inventoried at most gas stations).
  6. Retail Workers. You may have a lot of cameras on you but it is quite easy to make off with all sorts of things especially if you have an accomplice. One of the best scams is ringing up items that sound similar on the receipt, but cost a lot less. For example your friend comes in to buy a copy of Adobe Photoshop. (normally around $600 bucks), and you ring up Learning Adobe Photoshop 6.0, (a book that retails for about 25 bucks). The receipt will say photoshop, the guy at the door who checks receipts will see photoshop on the box and photoshop on the receipt. (This works with all sorts of stuff).
  7. Finally if it has dust on it you can probably take it without anyone noticing for months.

The above is for Entertainment purposes only. If you are stealing from your employer, you will eventually get caught. It is only a matter of time before you do. You do not want to go to jail. So don't do this.

If you're going to steal from work, don't steal anything except a pen or two. Besides the huge negative karma that you will incur, things never go the way you planned in your head. You'll be seen by someone whilst toting a CPU or two around. You'll be stuffing the booty in your bag when it will:

  • get searched by the guards that day because someone else read this node and stole something bigger.
  • have the bottom rip out right in front of the security guard.
  • be noticed by someone who has something for you and decides to just stuff it in your rucksack.

Getting caught ripping off your employer can cause some nasty side effects. If you get caught, you'll:

  • get arrested and have probation or a fine.
  • get fired and have to find a job to pay your bills.
  • lose out on references from your old work. If you lie to new employers about your work history, you'll get canned ASAP.
  • get branded as a scummy thief. Think about how your Mom would feel to have to go pick you up from jail. How many friends would you have if they knew you stole shit?

It isn't worth it. Save your karma and your integrity, if you need something go buy it.

I've heard that there are some easy tactics to stealing bigger things from offices.

If you find something like a computer, an external SCSI array, a router, or maybe a Herman Miller chair appealing, try hiding it somewhere in your office (assuming you have one, otherwise use a room to which you have (nearly) unlimited access and can have privacy long enough to hide something -- and where co-workers won't go poking around in weird places). Don't hide it where it looks like it's being hidden, just put it where it could have conceivably been misplaced. For example: behind one of the file drawers (but still inside the cabinet); inside one of the boxes that the TVs came in for the conference room, but are in storage (Does anyone know why they keep those, anyway? Are they planning on sending the TVs back?).

Leave said item there for two to three weeks. If someone comes looking for it, then it's something that is needed and will be missed. You can aid the search and rescue team and be a hero when it is discovered. On the other hand, if no one comes looking for it and there are no memos regarding it's absence, it's all yours.

Now it is time to get the item out of the building without being seen or recorded by any device. Besides hiding the actual removal, you must not leave any evidence which will tie the time and location of the removal to your presence. This is the trickiest part of the procedure. Spend two or three days noting the location and cycle of all automated security equipment: electronic locks for which you use a personalized swipe/radio card, cameras, infrared motion detectors, everything. Note that this should be done upon starting work at any employer, assuming you are a typical security-conscious paranoid geek (as everyone on E2 ought to be).

There are two ways that I've theorized are the best to get equipment out of the office without drawing suspicion. One is to bring a duffel bag to work, with the claim of "going to the gym" after work. (You had better have a gym membership and have been to the gym before if you try this. If you're lucky, no one will want to accompany you to the gym. This is why it is best to have a gym membership in another town or at a dirty/broken/otherwise bad gym.) Fill the duffel bag with newspaper/Styrofoam peanuts/etc in the morning, carry it to work, dump it out, and move the piece of equipment inside. When you leave, casually walk out as you usually would. Viola! You have a new toy. (Note that there are several variants on this, including the "birthday cake for a surprise party for my spouse/children/mother/dog" and the "backpack for the hiking trip this weekend that departs before I can go home and change.")

The other way which makes sense but sometimes is more difficult depending on security options at your place of employment is the "work on Saturday" option. It is important that you only use this maneuver if your offices are closed on the weekend but employees are still allowed to work if they so chose. Come in to work (make sure you have a task you can work on for a justifiable length of time) and when it is time to leave, pick up the unit and walk out the door (using a pre-selected path with minimum exposure to security devices). This can sometimes be combined with the previous item (e.g. place the item in a duffel bag). If there are other employees at work on this optional day, abort immediately and save the retrieval for another weekend (or late that evening when the other employee(s) leave).

You must practice your poker face and your casual walk for this procedure to work. It is not for the feint of heart nor those who buckle under pressure (as there are many opportunities for confrontation which could potentially lead to big trouble as described in the other write-ups).

A well-thought-out and rehearsed plan is the only way for stealing large things from work to be successfully accomplished. This guide only suggests things to take into consideration and is by no means complete nor is it authoritative.

Please note that I certainly have never tried1 any of these, and do not recommend that you do. If you get caught doing anything here, you are the one who is responsible.

Of course, all the above is chickenfeed. The best way to steal from your employer is self-plagiarism. This means selling the copyright on your work twice. Say you're a musician, you get hired to write music for 2 TV shows, you use the same work in both. Or you're contracted to write an album. Why bother producing new songs when you can copy some you've already recorded for other record labels under other contracts?

One famous case of this in recent years was the singer John Fogerty, who was sued by Fantasy Inc, who owned the copyright for his song "Run Through the Jungle" for allegedly copying it in his later composition "The Old Man Down the Road". The result was a copyright infringement suit like any other: the same standards were applied as if Fogerty had not written the first song.

This also works for a wide variety of creative professions, indeed any job which involves the creation of intellectual property. Computer programmers can write exactly the same piece of software for multiple companies - it's common to hire people to do work they've already done for another firm, even for rivals (especially for rivals). Some architects seem to produce essentially the same building over and over again for client after client. It is also a popular activity among students, who may try and submit the same essay or artwork more than once to different teachers.

Although this is generally illegal or at least will render you guilty of breach of contract or open to civil lawsuits like Fogerty, or for a student thrown out of college, in fact it is commonplace to a degree. If a famous recording artist moves from Atlantic to Dreamworks, does the new company expect them to produce wholly new work, different in style and format? Of course not. It's all a very fine line.

Or, as Alfred Hitchcock put it, "Self-plagiarism is style."

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