Since technology is developing a lot faster than the legal system and the law making process, sometimes there is no legal protection offered against the misuse of new technology. In some cases, it is not apparent what is and what is not to be prohibited, and so adequate laws do not exist, or are just not comprehensive enough to deal with most situations that may arise with misuse of a certain technology. In these circumstances, as with society, it is imperative that ethics take over, in order to provide sanity to what would otherwise be a very chaotic situation. It is the responsibility of people who create and use thetechnology to make sure that it is utilized in a responsible and ethical manner.
Of course, this does not offer any tangible protection, but just as with society, social acceptance and peer pressure that are nurtured through the acceptance or nonacceptance of evolving ethics, play a key role in limiting the misuse of technology. Thus, it is vital that healthy security based ethics are cultivated to compensate for and/or collaborate with the legal system.Users deal with the vast expanses of the Internet, a domain that knows no geographical boundaries or national or cultural lines. While on it, they interact with people from different parts of the world, with different values and beliefs.
Apart from laws to regulate the on-goings of the Internet, its users also need to have a certain amount of responsibility and etiquette while using it. This does not apply only to Internet use, but also to general use of computer resources, hardwareand software. It is impossible to formulate laws to enforce all sorts of behaviors acceptable to society. Instead, society depends on ethics to build awareness of socially accepted behavior. Ethics are objective. Unlike laws, they cannot be forced on individuals. In fact different individuals may have different ethical beliefs. The point however, is that some sort of social standard needs to be set with regard to the use of computer resources.
Unlike laws, ethics can be molded and modified to suit the situation much more easily. Thus it is the responsibility of groups, companies, organizations, service providers, and even countries to establish codes of ethical behavior that people should strive to achieve and live by. Security plays a big part in today’s world of computers, e-commerce and the Internet and IT professionals are the custodians of information; Therefore, they need to be made of the highest ethical fiber to effectively safeguard this information and operate on decisions and judgment calls that are in the best interest of the firm.With technological advancement, the ability and ease to discuss vulnerabilities or search for vulnerabilities in systems and product is high, and that makes the role of IT professionals even more complex when it comes to ethics and ethical behavior in the workplace.Most professions usually have defined a code of ethics or code of conduct guidelines that all professionals affiliated with the profession must adhere to. In a nutshell, a code of ethics makes individuals acting on their free will responsible and accountable for their actions