Most forms of embezzlement are so obvious that people would never commit them by accident. Stealing cash from the petty cash drawer or credit card numbers from customers is an obvious violation of the law.
However, there are certain forms of embezzlement that fall into ethical gray areas that people may not realize are innately criminal. Even if you would never think of directly stealing money from your employer, there are other behaviors you might engage in at work that could eventually lead to allegations of embezzlement.
When you take physical items, even those meant for destruction
People grow acclimated to their employer providing them with certain resources. They may feel a sense of entitlement about having electronics or office supplies, even if they want them for personal use. Taking items from your employer even if they supply them for you to use at work is possibly a form of embezzlement. The same is true of taking merchandise or products that your employer orders you to destroy or throw away according to company policy.
When you use a company expense card for personal reasons
While you might not want to steal directly from your employer, trying to pass off a few personal purchases as business expenses may not seem like a big deal. The problem with such habits is that they tend to grow bigger over time. Rather than just putting gas in your car once, you might start paying for your dates with your company. The more you charge, the more likely it is that they will notice the pattern of questionable spending.
Workers who make mistakes about how they use company assets could find themselves facing allegations of embezzlement that end their career or land them in jail.