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CIPS Chair Blog: "Dawson College Student Expulsion and the Need for an IT Code of Ethics"

Feb 4 2013 - Many of us were shocked to hear that Dawson College in Montreal expelled a student because he reported a security vulnerability in the school’s computer systems.  As more details have come out the story tells of a conscientious student helping the college ensure security of the student data, but further details exposed a  student far too eager to pursue exposure of the security flaw even after requests to stop.  Unfortunately the student’s eagerness ended up creating potential negative consequences for his professional future.  Hopefully the Omnivox Software provider Skytech better understands quality programming can make or break the reputation of a company. Standards and quality control in software development is necessary to ensure protection of the public.  For all IT professionals on either side of purchasing or creating software applications, adhering to a code of conduct and a code of practice  should be accepted and understood.  Whether you belong to an IT professional organization or not every IT practitioner needs to understand that a high level of moral and ethical intelligence is required for a career in the IT industry.  It’s all about trust between the employer and the employee or contractor.  Without trust the relationship breaks down and it will come to an end.  Unfortunately we hope the best for the student and hope he is able to learn from the experience as should the college with possible better education and communication to students about an IT code of ethics.  For information on the CIPS code of ethics see link http://www.cips.ca/ethics

 

Sincerely,

Brenda Byers, I.S.P., ITCP/IP3P

Chair, CIPS National Board

  

National Post Article: “Pupil expelled from Montreal college after finding ‘sloppy coding’ that compromised security of 250,000 students personal data


 

About CIPS:

CIPS is a professional association of individual IT professionals. Since 1958 CIPS has helped strengthen the Canadian IT industry by establishing standards and sharing best practices for the benefit of individual IT professionals and the sector as a whole. As Canada’s Association of Information Technology Professionalswe represent thousands of members across the country.

CIPS offers Networking opportunities, Certification of IT professionals (I.S.P. and ITCP certifications), Accreditation of IT Post-Secondary programs, a niche IT Job Board, a voice to government, and represents Canadian IT professionals in international forums, encouraging and facilitating on-going professional development and safeguarding the public interest. www.cips.ca, info@cips.ca

 

CIPS Code of Ethics:

The CIPS Code of Ethics is a comprehensive guide to professional conduct. The Code is designed to help IT practitioners maintain the highest level of ethical conduct, standards of practice and integrity with respect to their professional activities. IT practitioners are strongly encouraged to use the Code of Ethics in their professional dealings with colleagues, employers, employees, clients and students. All CIPS members (including students) agree to abide by the Code of Ethics and its ethical principles/imperatives.

http://www.cips.ca/ethics