What Are Internet Ethics

Internet ethics

Internet Ethics: While using the Internet for various purposes, it is essential that we use our good judgment to avoid any form of activity that may cause harm to ourselves or to others. Internet ethics are defined as the good values and practices that you should follow while working on the Internet. The Internet Architecture Board has issued Request For Comments (RFC document no. 1087) which defines unethical activities on the Internet as the following:

  • Gaining unauthorized access to others’ passwords of email accounts or websites.
  • Spreading viruses and other harmful programs to disturb the proper working of the Internet.
  • Wasting the efforts of other people.
  • Putting data of the computer in danger.
  • Compromising the privacy of the user.

The concept of Internet ethics can be better understood with the following cases:

  1. In order to attract customers, a new company uses the logo of a famous company such as McDonald’s, Disney, etc.
  2. Putin has written a book on how to work in MS Excel 2010. Vokkhochi copies the text of this book and writes a new book using his own name instead.
  3. John buys a music CD from the market. He copies the music files onto his computer and makes copies of these files on CDs for distribution to his friends.
  4. Smith walked away from his computer without logging off. Mishi Mayo sits down and reads his personal messages. she also sends mischievous emails to some of Smith’s friends.
  5. David sends emails to many persons with a file attachment that is a virus program.
  6. Joya sends emails to people informing them that they have won a prize. In order to collect the prize, they need to deposit some cash in his bank account.

All these cases are examples of unethical practices. The action is different in all the cases. However, the individual doing the action knows that he is doing wrong.

The first case is a misuse of intellectual property. The second case is the unauthorized use of copyright material. The third case is that of piracy. The fourth case is defamation and intrusion in privacy. The fifth case is of cyber-attack and the last case is of phishing or online fraud. All these terms are explained in the following sections.