The rapid development of information technologies has offered many opportunities to individuals, businesses, and public organizations. However, it has also given rise to many problems such as Internet fraud, privacy violation or data theft.
We will write a custom Report on Information Systems: Ethical, Legal, and Security Issues specifically for you
301 certified writers online
This report is aimed at discussing the ethical, social, and legal issues related to the use of information systems. In most cases, they emerge when a person’s right to privacy is disregarded. The problems identified in this paper require close attention of managers and legislators who must make sure that people know how their personal information can be collected, stored or shared.
Overall, the term information system can be defined as a combination of technologies, software solutions, and procedures that are needed for the collection, storage, and transfer of data (Prakken 38). At first, it is necessary to examine moral aspect of these tools. As a rule, ethical issues arise when businesses or organization use private data without the consent of customers or users. For example, one can refer to the activities of data brokers or organizations that collect information and sell it businesses (Dempsey 250).
Very often, this information can be collected with the help of cookies or data mining techniques that can throw light on people’s interests or values (Dempsey 250). Yet, these organizations do not receive people’s informed consent and customers do know much about their activities. This behavior violates the principles of public or interpersonal relations, established in the community. Moreover, the problem of consent is closely related to the work of medical institutions.
These organizations have to collect, store and share records about patients’ health (Goodman 59). To a great extent, these activities ensure the effective work of healthcare organizations (Goodman 59). The problem is that this information is very confidential and people do not want it to be accessible to others. It is probable that these records can be made public, and an individual may be able to address this risk. So, the use of information systems can violate a person’s rights without his/her consent.
Additionally, it is important to remember about social issues that can be explained by some widespread changes in people’s behavior and their attitude toward such concepts as privacy and confidentiality. First of all, the development of information systems has enabled people to learn more about one another (Stair and Reynolds 392).
For instance, such social networks as Facebook, MySpace, or Twitter enable users to post information about themselves, and it should be available only to their friends or relatives (Stair and Reynolds 392). Nevertheless, this information can be easily used against them. For instance, their postings can be considered by law-enforcement agencies in order to detect people who can pose a threat to the society. This is one of the problems that should not be overlooked.
Similarly, it can be used by people who may want to obtain users’ emails, phone numbers, addresses, and sometimes even credit card information. Therefore, it is possible to say that information systems have become public, and this situation can imperil the security of people’s data.
It is also important to remember about legal problems that are closely related to the information systems. This issue is particularly important to many businesses that should defend their data from potential competitors (Calder & Watkins 316). This is one of the reasons why these organizations face legal issues and disputes. These problems occur in those cases, companies cannot secure of their patents, the information about their clients, trademarks, inventions or other forms of intellectual property (Calder & Watkins 316).
It should be noted that many businesses depend on the security of their intellectual property, and in some cases, they have to pursue those individuals who could use their intellectual property without the official permission of the company (Calder & Watkins 316). These legal problems can be very expensive and time-consuming for many organizations.
Thus, one can argue that private companies and public organizations should pay close attention to the security of their information systems that should be protected from intruders. The same problems are encountered by individuals who have to make sure that their confidential information is properly protected. In many cases, they have to create a system of passwords that prevent unauthorized access to their information. Provided no precautions are taken, a great number of people can be affected.
On the whole, these examples suggest that information systems give rise to a variety of ethical, social, and legal problems relevant to businesses, governmental organizations, and separate individuals. As a rule, they occur in those situations when a person’s confidential information is used by other parties without his/her explicit agreement.
These issues should be addressed by policy-makers, legislators, and the leaders of businesses or public organizations. The most important task is to make sure that the users of information systems should know how their confidential data can be used by third parties. This is the main argument that can be advanced.
Calder, Alan, and S. Watkins. IT Governance: An International Guide to Data Security, New York: Kogan Page Publishers, 2012. Print.
Get your first paper with 15% OFF
Dempsey, John. Introduction to Private Security, New York: Cengage Learning, 2007. Print.
Goodman, Kenneth. “Ethics, information technology, and public health: new challenges for the clinician-patient relationship.” Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 38. 1 (2010): 58-63. Print.
Prakken, Ben. Information, Organization and Information Systems Design: An Integrated Approach to Information Problems, New York: Springer, 2000. Print.
Stair, Ralph, and G. Reynolds. Fundamentals of Information Systems. Boston: Cengage Learning, 2011. Print.