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6 Ethical Issues in Information Technology

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Ethics refers to a code of conduct or moral principles that govern a person’s behaviour. Now, applied to information technology, these will include issues or activities arising from the use and development of Information technology. Ethics is essential because, without it, we would live in a dangerous and near dystopian society. Just imagine if we have no safeguards for our lives and business conduct. Here are some of the issues of Ethics in IT.

  • Accessibility – The internet access is more prevalent today than two decades ago early 1990s and 2000s but the questions are some marginalized population such as the poor have access to the internet.

  • Privacy and security—Personally identifying information such as Social Security Number, Address, and names – if divulged in public could cause a threat to the life of a owner. Someone with nefarious intent can use such information to spread
    misinformation, such as fake news and cyberbullying. Another scope of privacy is how a social media or website use your info. Are they using it without your permission, or are they collecting info from your computer and account without your knowledge?

  • Cyberbullying – This comprises posting negative, false, hate speech info about someone else that takes place on digital devices such as laptops, desktops, tablets, and smartphone. These posts are often posted on social media and blogs.

  • Disinformation and fake news – Since the internet is the primary source of information, fake news and false info also started to increase. Some people don’t fact-check or bother to look at verified sources and believe what they see on Facebook and other social media sites.

  • Intellectual property – Without creativity, there will be no reason to produce art and creations (audio, photos, software, games) and anything that can be regarded as digital goods or products. Anyone can download a photo, audio, or video over the internet with freedom and may or might not credit the original author. Intellectual property also applies to trade secrets.

  • Surveillance and control—The dystopian society regularly involves a police state or government employing drones and cameras to monitor citizens and curb protests. Your personal information such as an address, name, and social security number could be used against your privacy and freedom.

The bottom line

Overall, addressing issues in information technology can help us prevent the damages or negative effects of disinformation, unethical hacking and malicious content. We can use the power of information technology to protect freedom and safety.

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