Discuss how a Chief Information Officer (CIO) might handle ethical decision making using one or more of the theories presented in the week one reading material.
Discussion Two - Privacy
What is your opinion of the recent controversy over government monitoring of citizens phone and email communications? Consider: Should a line be drawn on further invasions of privacy?
Discussion Three – Intellectual Property
The Internet is an ideal communication mechanism because of its openness and anonymity but people must make ethical decisions about how to use this power. Intellectual property is a work of the mind, such as art, books, formulas, inventions, and processes that are distinct and created by a single person or group. Copyright law protects authored works such as art, books, film, and music. Patent law protects inventions, and trade secret law helps safeguard information that is mission critical in an organization.
Discuss how freedom of expression and intellectual property rights might ethically conflict. In your reply, consider how your own freedom of expression might affect your privacy or personal intellectual property. Please provide examples when possible.
Discussion – Week Four
IT workers have many different relationships, including those with employers, clients, suppliers, other professionals, IT users, and the society at large, and that in each relationship, an ethical IT worker acts honestly and appropriately. IT workers must set an example and enforce policies regarding the ethical use of IT. IT workers are in a unique position because they have the skills and knowledge to abuse systems and data or to allow others to do so.
Discuss an ethical issue IT organizations face today. Have you been personally affected by an IT ethical issue? Provide examples.
Week Five (5) Discussion - Cyber Crime
Businesses have increasingly relied upon networks of computers and the rapid pace of technological presents a challenge in identifying risks and implementing strategies to deal with them. Four ethical topics pertinent to organizations in the IT industry and organizations that make use of IT are: 1) use of nontraditional workers, 2) whistle-blowing, 3) green computing, and 4) ICT code of ethics. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, during the period from 2006 to 2014, networking and data communications positions are forecasted to grow by 50%. In response to the projected shortfall of labor, employers are turning to contingent workers, H-1B workers, and outsourced offshore workers. Additionally, IT security is of the utmost importance and organizations must safeguard data, protect against malicious acts, and yet balance these issues against other business needs and issues. Systems are becoming more complex, and thus, the number of possible entry points into the system is expanding, increasing the risk of security breaches. One entry point into a system is through coworkers who give out their usernames and passwords and help desk personnel who are under productivity pressure and do not always verify users’ identities.
Discuss an emerging technology you believe has potential for ethical abuse or conflicts. Provide examples.
Week Six (6) - Quality of Life
Social networking Web sites create online communities of Internet users that eliminate barriers created by time, distance, and cultural differences. These sites allow people to interact with others online by sharing opinions, insights, information, interests, and experiences. Members may use the site to interact with friends, family members, and colleagues they already know, but that they may also wish to develop new personal and professional relationships on the sites. Social network advertising uses social networks to inform, promote, and communicate the benefits of products and services, and there are several advertising strategies. Banner ads on social networks can either be displayed to each visitor to the Web site or by using the information in user profiles, directed toward those members who would likely find the product most appealing. People frequently make decisions based on input from their close group of friends and advertising and use an individual's network of friends. Company owned social networking web sites allow users to talk about new products, services, or improvements they would like to see and the company can implement customer-submitted ideas. Viral marketing is where users pass along a marketing message to others, creating the potential for exponential growth. Many companies are using social media to advertise, collect information, or gather background on individuals.
Do you think this is ethical?
Discussion – Week Seven – Challenges for the 21st Century
The four ethical topics pertinent to organizations in the IT industry and organizations that make use of IT: 1) use of nontraditional workers, 2) whistle-blowing, 3) green computing, and 4) ICT code of ethics. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, during the period from 2006 to 2014, networking and data communications positions are forecasted to grow by 50%. In response to the projected shortfall of labor, employers are turning to contingent workers, H-1B workers, and outsourced offshore workers.
H-1B as a temporary working visa granted by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for people who work in jobs that require a four-year bachelor’s degree or higher in a specific field. Companies turn to H-1B workers to meet critical business needs or to obtain essential technical skills and knowledge that are not readily found in the U.S. H-1B professionals often are hired to provide technical expertise in overseas markets or on projects that enable U.S. companies to compete globally. Employers are required to pay H-1B workers the prevailing wage for U.S. workers to do equivalent jobs, and a person can work for a U.S. employer on an H-1B visa for a maximum of six continuous years. Outsourcing as a long-term business approach to meeting staffing needs. With outsourcing, companies make contracts with an outside firm to perform a specialized function on an ongoing basis, and give examples of outsourcing. Coemployment legal problems are minimal because the company that contracts for services does not supervise or control the contractor’s employees. Primary rationale for outsourcing is to lower costs, but companies also use it to gain strategic flexibility and to focus on their core competencies.
Whistle-blowing as an effort to attract public attention to a negligent, illegal, unethical, abusive, or dangerous act by a company that threatens the public interest. In most cases, whistle-blowers act ethically in an attempt to correct what they think is a major wrongdoing, often at great personal risk. The whistle-blower usually has special information about what is happening based on personal expertise or a position of employment within the offending organization. There are no comprehensive federal laws to protect all whistle-blowers; rather, there are numerous laws, and each protects a certain class of whistle-blowing acts in various industries.
In order to manufacture truly “green” products, companies must: 1) reduce the amount of hazardous materials used, 2) increase the amount of reusable or recyclable materials, and 3) help consumers dispose of their products in an environmentally safe manner at the end of the product’s useful life. Electronic devices contain thousands of components, some harmful to humans and environment. The entire supply chain is at risk. Discuss what you think is a serious ethical IT challenge.
What specific company or industry might face risks from these challenges? How would you avoid ethical issues?