Ethics and IT: security professionals will be our next generation of superheroes

In the IT field, the notion of ethics is often associated with artificial intelligence, which is positive but somewhat restrictive. However, it should become a real topic for the entire IT industry. In which areas of IT ethical behavior is best illustrated and at what level can we identify avenues for improvement?

R&D, a real starting point

Two areas should integrate the concept of ethics. The first concerns the development of products where malicious actors and fear are the main obstacles to ethical models. The second is linked to the culture of the computer industry, where complacency and greed can often prevent “doing what is right”.

When the topic of ethics in IT is broached, artificial intelligence is at the heart of the discussions because this technology is poorly understood and often seen as frightening.. However, ethics should not apply only to AI but to the entire IT product development chain. From the R&D phase, simply defining the functionalities to which a technology is supposed to meet is insufficient and it is essential to question the positive potential that it represents or not, beyond the set objective.

Intel, for example, has developed its chip-based processors taking into account IT innovation and considering them as levers of operational efficiency to generate income. Unfortunately, that was without counting on the Meltdown and Specter vulnerabilities discovered a few years later in processors. This example shows that, in any technology, there are features that may not be taken into account or recognized during the development phase.

While technologies like robots, drones, or supercomputers were originally created with the best intentions – like boosting efficiency or encouraging deep learning – their power and potential can drive behaviors and results. unforeseen or even unwanted. It’s easy to fall in love with technology so attractive and brilliant, that the business and societal benefits outweigh the associated risks. Moreover, a quote from the film Jurassic Park illustrates this notion perfectly: The true concern of scientists is success. All they care about is whether they can do something and they never take the time to wonder if they should do it.

There is no denying that we need to keep this element in mind, especially in the IT industry. Evaluating both the good and the possible bad uses of a technology, integrating security from the design stage and developing ethical standards will help to preserve the future. Manufacturers, developers and marketers should also take responsibility for their technology and companies should establish an open and collaborative culture that allows us to speak out against failures and learn from them.

An ethical anchoring in the IT culture is essential

This then brings us to the question of the culture of the IT industry. The fundamental goal of technology is to optimize productivity, security and user experience. However, it is often admitted that salespeople are too obsessed with their objectives, thus entering into contradiction with these principles. This perception can prevent organizations from establishing constructive partnerships and therefore hamper improvements in efficiency, cyber-resilience and experience.. This is precisely where ethics come in. Sales teams who want to be a game-changer and help their business should put bullying techniques aside. It’s easy to appropriate scare-mongering rhetoric and hope that by spreading fear, uncertainty and doubt, it will lead to a sale. In reality, constructive, collaborative and hopeful discussions about innovation will be the ones that make a real difference and allow sellers to build trusting relationships and lasting partnerships.

Along with the good reputation that comes naturally from product quality, there are a number of things that managers need to consider if they are to develop a positive reputation and showcase the goodwill of their business.

As a first step, any IT company should take a close look at each team recruited and ensure that they are bringing in talent that fits the corporate culture well and really wants to make a difference. There will always be sales targets and financial motivators to ensure the continued success of the business.. But employees also need to be encouraged and supported to build authentic relationships and show that they care about what they’re doing.

Then, IT players must ensure that CSR initiatives are not reduced to a simple to-do list, but that they contribute to the continuous improvement of the sector by focusing, for example, on the next generation of professionals. of IT and supporting it. The idea is to look to the future instead of just taking advantage of the current market.

In the end, we must not forget that money is not the only priority, especially in times of crisis. As battles increasingly take place online, security professionals need to be seen as our next superheroes – it’s time to realize that.

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