What is ethics?
Ethics to me is knowing the difference between wrong and right. It can also be a gut feeling telling you that yours or someone else's actions are wrong. In the computer science world ethics is "the procedures, values and practices that govern the process of consuming computing technology and its related disciplines without damaging or violating the moral values and beliefs of any individual, organization or entity."(Techcopedia).
It is very important to keep your ethical integrity in the computer science field. There are many things that can go wrong in making software like not taking the proper procedures. Sometimes rushing a product and not testing it just because you need to reach your deadline. this can result to tremendous consequences. Here are just a few hypothetical consequences:
- People losing money from there bank account because the online banking app software has bugs and it was not depositing the correct amount of money that was on your check.
- A calculator not giving out the right results because of an error in the code in the software, so all your math homework is going to be wrong in results.
There are many ethical problems in the computer science field and they are increasing more and more each day as we rely more on our technology for our everyday use. Here are few ethically wrong issues in the computer science field:
- Stealing other computer science colleagues codes or logarithms. It is unethical because it is like stealing someone else's idea(s).
- Identity theft through the internet. This example can really make the victim's life very difficult. The culprit can destroy the victim's credit, can steal their money and can also impersonate themselves as the victim.
- Ratting (Which is when someone takes over your computer functions and can access everything on it, even your built in camera). The ethics behind this issue is that your accessing confidential information like private photos, passwords, and invading peoples privacy. It is also pretty hard to know when someone breach your computer, unless you have a very good anti virus software.
They are many unethical things that can happen in the computer science field. One example is a software malfunction, when a Therac-25 Machine killed six people. A Therac-25 Machine is "a medical linear accelerator manufactured by AECL. A linear accelerator ("linac") is a particle accelerator, a device that increases the energy of electrically charged atomic particles. The charged particle are accelerated by the introduction of an electric field, producing beams of particles which are then focused by magnets. Linacs are used to treat cancer patients. A patient is exposed to beams of particles, or radiation, in doses designed to kill a malignancy."(Anne Marie Porrello). The software in the machine was update and an error occur, which resulted in the machine giving higher doses to the patients and killing them by over exposure to the radiation particles.The people who worked on the updated software had an ethical obligation to test the product thoroughly. Maybe if the people working on the project were more thorough in their procedure, they could have avoided this tragedy.