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1.7.

1 Ethics
IEEE CS/ACM Code of Ethics and Professional Practice
Software engineers code of ethics
1. PUBLIC

- Software engineers shall act consistently with the public interest.

- Software engineers shall act in a manner that is in the


best interests of their client and employer consistent with the public interest.
2. CLIENT AND EMPLOYER

- Software engineers shall ensure that their products and related


modifications meet the highest professional standards possible.
3. PRODUCT

- Software engineers shall maintain integrity and independence in their


professional judgment.
4. JUDGMENT

- Software engineering managers and leaders shall subscribe to and


promote an ethical approach to the management of software development and
maintenance.

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5. MANAGEMENT

- Software engineers shall advance the integrity and reputation of


the profession consistent with the public interest.

colleagues.

- Software engineers shall be fair to and supportive of their

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7. COLLEAGUES

6. PROFESSION

- Software engineers shall participate in lifelong learning regarding the


practice of their profession and shall promote an ethical approach to the practice of
the profession.

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8. SELF

The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) is the worlds largest educational
and scientific computing society. It has its own Code of Ethics and another set of
ethical principles that were also approved by the IEEE as the standard for teaching
and practicing software engineering.
* Contribute to society and human well-being. Programmers should work to

develop computer systems that can reduce negative consequences to society, such
as threats to safety and health, and that can make everyday activities and work
easier. It is an obligation to develop to high standards
* Avoid harm to others. Computer systems have an indirect impact on third parties.

They can cause loss of information and resources that might result severely harmful
for users, the general public, or employers. Therefore, software developers should
minimize the risk of harming others due to coding errors, or security issues, by
following standards to design and test systems

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* Be honest and trustworthy. This principle encourages programmers to be honest

and aware of their limitations in knowledge and education when writing computer
systems. Also, if a programmer knows there is something wrong with a computer
system, he or she should report it immediately to avoid undesirable consequences.
* Give proper credit for intellectual property. It is mandatory for every software

developer to never use and take credit for someone elses work, even when it has
not been protected by a copyright law, patent, etc. They must recognize and fully
credit other peoples works, and they should use their own ideas to develop
software.
* Respect the privacy of others. Computer systems are wrongly used by some

people to violate the privacy of others. Software developers should write programs
that can protect users private information and that can avoid other undesired
people to have unauthorized access to.

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* Honor confidentiality. Unless required by law or any other ethical guideline, a

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programmer must keep secret any additional information related to his or her
employer that arises from working in a project.

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* Approve software only if they have a well-founded belief it is safe and meets
specifications. Programmers cannot assume that a system is ready to use only
because it performs the tasks needed. They should make sure these systems are
also safe and meet every specification required by the user. If programs are not
safe, users are unprotected from hackers that could steal important information or
money. Therefore, several tests should be performed in order to ensure a systems
security before approving it.

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* Accept full responsibility for their own work. If a program presents errors, the

software developer should accept full responsibility for his or her work, and should
work on revising, correcting, modifying, and testing it.
* Not knowingly use software that is obtained or retained either illegally or
unethically. If a computer system will be used as a base for the creation of another,

then permission to do so should be asked by the programmer. This principle


prohibits using any other software for any purpose if the way it was gotten is not
clear or is known to be illegal or unethical.
* Identify, define, and address ethical, economic, cultural, legal and environmental
issues related to work projects. If a programmer notices and identifies that

working on a project will lead to any kind of problems, then the programmer should
report it to his or her employer before continuing.

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* Ensure that specifications for software on which they work satisfy the users
requirements and they have the appropriate approvals. Software developers

should come to their employers to ask for the correspondent approval to the
system they are creating before continuing working on the next part. If it doesnt
meet the requirements, then a modification to the source code of the system should
be made.
* Ensure adequate testing, debugging and review of software. Programmers

should perform the appropriate tests to the pieces of software they work with, and
should check for errors and system security holes to make sure that the programs
are well implemented.
* Not engage in deceptive financial practices such as bribery, double billing, or
other improper financial practices. Programmers are exposed to be participants on

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illegal activities to get money. They get involved in them due to threats, economical
issues, or simply because they want to obtain easy money taking advantage of their

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knowledge about how computer systems work. This guideline prohibits programmer

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to form part of such unlawful actions.

software. Since technology advances faster year by year, and so does virtual

criminality, the need of well-structured and designed programs is increasing.


should

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Computer systems get old and limited by new ones and new devices. Programmers
knowledge

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specification, design, development, maintenance, and testing software and related

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1.7.2 Ownership
Concept of ownership and copyright of software
What happens when you purchase a specific software application? And if youve
purchased software, what is the license agreement for? Do you now own the
software because you paid for it?

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Simply put, no. Though you may have paid for the software, what you have actually
done is licensed the application, essentially paying for the rights to use the software
according to guidelines determined by the owner. The owner of the software
remains the person or entity that holds the copyright, giving them the sole legal
authority power to sell, distribute, copy and/or change the content of the software.
And unless the person or organization transfers ownership rights, the rights remain
with the owner no matter how many times the owner legally distributes the
software.

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When a user either purchases software or freely downloads software from the
Internet, the user is not buying the ownership rights to the software but a license
to use the software according to the licensing agreement, or EULA (for end user
licensing agreement). The EULA is a legal agreement between the two parties and
is legally actionable if either party violates the terms of the agreement. While no
two EULAs are exactly the same.

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Its a good idea to actually read all the way through the licensing agreements of
software you buy or download. One way that spyware has been able to proliferate
over the Internet is by individuals not paying attention to the licensing agreements
that state that along with the intended software the program will also be installing
spyware on your system.
Legislation to protect ownership, usage and copyright

Computer software is protected by copyright law and international copyright


treaties as well as other intellectual property laws and treaties. Copyright law and
other intellectual property laws in many countries or regions protect the rights of a
software owner by granting to the owner a number of exclusive rights, including the
right to reproduce or "copy" the software. Copying software without the permission
of the owner is "copyright infringement" and the law imposes penalties on
infringers.
You make a "copy" of a software program whenever you:
1) Load the software into your computer's temporary memory by running the
program from a floppy disk, hard disk, CD-ROM, or other storage media;
2) Copy the software onto other media such as a floppy disk or your computer's
hard disk;
3) Run the program on your computer from a network server on which the
software is resident or stored.

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Almost all commercial computer software is licensed directly or indirectly from the
copyright owner (the software publisher) for use by the customer through a type of
contract called an "End User License Agreement" (also known as a EULA). Different
products may have different types of EULAs.
Data Protection Act 1998
The Data Protection Act 1998 controls the way that companies, organizations and
individuals handle personal data.
It states that:

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1. Data may only be used for the specific purposes for which it was collected.
2. Data must not be disclosed to other parties without the consent of the
individual whom it is about, unless there is legislation or other overriding
legitimate reason to share the information (for example, the prevention or
detection of crime). It is an offence for Other Parties to obtain this personal
data without authorization.
3. Individuals have a right of access to the information held about them, subject
to certain exceptions (for example, information held for the prevention or
detection of crime).
4. Personal information may be kept for no longer than is necessary and must
be kept up to date.
5. Personal information may not be sent outside the European Economic Area
unless the individual whom it is about has consented or adequate protection
is in place, for example by the use of a prescribed form of contract to govern
the transmission of the data.
6. Subject to some exceptions for organizations that only do very simple
processing, and for domestic use, all entities that process personal
information must register with the Information Commissioner's Office.
7. The departments of a company that are holding personal information are
required to have adequate security measures in place. Those include
technical measures (such as firewalls) and organizational measures (such as
staff training)
8. Subjects have the right to have factually incorrect information corrected

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Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000

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The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act was passed in 2000, and


introduces the power to intercept communications with the aim of taking into
account the growth of the Internet. It regulates the manner in which certain
public bodies may conduct surveillance and access a person's electronic
communications

enables certain public bodies to demand that an ISP provide access to


a customer's communications in secret;

enables mass surveillance of communications in transit;

enables certain public bodies to demand ISPs fit equipment to facilitate


surveillance;

enables certain public bodies to demand that someone hand over keys
to protected information;

allows certain public bodies to monitor people's internet activities;

Prevents the existence of interception warrants and any data collected


with them from being revealed in court.

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Free software foundation (FSF)

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Free software developers guarantee everyone equal rights to their programs;


any user can study the source code, modify it, and share the program. By
contrast, most software carries fine print that denies users these basic rights,
leaving them susceptible to the whims of its owners and vulnerable to
surveillance.
The FSF provides critical infrastructure and funding for theGNU project,
the foundation of the popular GNU/Linux family of free operating systems
and the keystone of the Internet.
Campaigns Team creates educational materials about free software,
convenes the yearly LibrePlanet conference and goes toe to toe against
powerful interests that threaten computer user rights.
Licensing & Compliance Lab defends freely licensed software from
proprietary hoarding, advises on licensing issues, and certifies devices
that Respect Your Freedom
Open Source Initiative (OSI)
The Open
Source
Initiative (OSI)
promoting open-source software.

is

an

organization

dedicated

to

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Shareware

Most shareware is delivered free of charge for trial basis e.g. 30 days, but the
author usually requests that you pay a small fee if you like the program and use
it regularly. By sending the small fee, you become registered with the producer
so that you can receive service assistance and updates. You can copy shareware
and pass it along to friends and colleagues, but they too are expected to pay a
fee if they use the product.
Shareware is inexpensive because it is usually produced by a
single programmer and is offered directly to customers. Thus, there is practically
no packaging or advertising expenses.
Commercial software
Commercial software, or sometimes payware is a software that is designed for
sale to serve a commercial need. Commercial software is usually proprietary
software, but in some instances it may be public-domain software.

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