Security and Ethics


Welcome to class! 

In today’s class, we will be talking about security and ethics. Enjoy the class!

Security and Ethics

Security and Ethics

Computer ethics 

Computer Ethics can be defined as a set of moral principle that requires the use of the computer. It deals with how computer professional should decide on professionals and social conduct.

Computer ethics are rules that govern the use of a computer system. Ethics deals with placing a “value” on acts according to whether they are “good” or “bad”. Every society has its rules about whether certain acts are ethical or not. These rules have been established as a result of consensus in society and are often written into laws. Computer ethics are increasingly becoming important because of the rising number of cybercrime issues, including software piracy, unauthorized access, pornography, spamming, and target marketing, and hacking.

The widespread popularity and use of the Internet have given rise to many cybercrime issues and concerns about user privacy. Various computing applications are tampered with to invade into other’s privacy. Malware, spyware, freeware, and browser cookie exploits are some of the notorious computing applications that have spurred the debate on the importance of ethical behaviour in technology.

Some of the rules you should follow while using a computer are:

Basic rules
  1. Check your email regularly
  2. Avoid liquid and moist from dropping into the computer system
  3. Protect the system from power fluctuation
  4. Unplug the system when not in use
  5. Respond to email promptly and politely
  6. Use dust cover or proof to cover the system after use
General rules
  1. Any restricted files stardom the computer should not be accessed
  2. You should not give your user name and password to anyone
  3. You should not alter any information on the system except your own
  4. Be polite to others on the net
  5. Be careful not to use rude or bad language online
  6. Do not break any laws
  7. Be patients with newcomers
  8. Your message should be simple on the point.

Security breaches

  1. Unintentional intrusions
  2.  Intentional attacks
  3. Denial of services attacks
  4. Making services not available (e.g. over the Internet)
  5.  Browsing
  6.  Directory or data in memory
  7. Disk from previous process file
  8. Wiretapping
  9.  Listening  and collecting information (e.g. passwords for later access) bypassing authentication
  10.  Repeated trials (guessing authentic passwords)
  11.  Trap doors (including backdoor passwords)
  12.  Unspecified and undocumented entry points to systems
  13. Trash collection/dumpster diving
Virus – security breach
  •  a small program that alters the way a computer operates without the permission or knowledge of the user
  • Self-executing – often placing its own code in the path of another
  •  Self-replicating – accomplished by copying itself from an infected file to a clean file
  • Targeting certain OS exploiting a known vulnerability in the system software – hence important to correctly update the OS with patches Security and Viruses and worms
 Types of virus
  1. File infector Normally resident in memory and infect executive files in the OS
  2. Boot sector Infect the boot sector (disks and hard drives) when the computer is booted up (powered on)
  3. Master boot record Infect the boot record of a disk saving a legitimate copy of the master boot record in a different location on the volume
  4. Multipartite Infect both boot record and program files making especially difficult to repair
  5. Macro Infect data files such as word processing and spreadsheet Security and Viruses and worms
Trojan horses (Security breach)
  1. A virus disguised as a legitimate/harmless program
  2. Sometimes carries within itself the means to allow the program creator to secretly access the user system
  3.  Replaces the standard login with an identical fake login to capture the keystrokes
  4.  The user sees a login prompt and types in user ID
  5. The user sees a password prompt and type in the password.
  6. The rogue program records user ID and password and send a typical login failure message to the user, and returns to legitimate program
  7.  Now the user sees the legitimate login and types in user ID
  8. The user then sees the legitimate password prompt and types in the password.
  9.  Finally, the user gains access, unaware that the ID and password were stored by the rogue program
Bombs (Security breach)
  1.  A logic bomb is a destructive program with a fuse – triggering event (e.g. keystroke or Internet connection).
  2.  A logic bomb often spreads unnoticed throughout a network until a predetermined event when it goes off and does the damage.
  3.  A time bomb is triggered by a specific time such as a day of the year. Example – Michaelangelo discovered in 1991 was designed to execute on the birthday of Michaelangelo (6 March 1475) when a computer is booted up. It overwrote the first 17 sectors on heads 0-3 of the first 256 tracks of the disk making subsequent boot difficult.

Antivirus software is capable of repairing files infected with a virus but it is generally unable to repair worms.

  1. What are computer ethics? (a) An honest, moral code that should be followed when on the computer (b) A computer program about honesty (c) A computer that fits on or under a desk (d) A list of commandments in the Bible
  2. Which of the following would be considered as a way that a computer virus can enter a computer system? (a) E-mail and file attachments. (b) Downloaded copies of games (c) Downloaded copies of shareware (d) All of the above.
  3. The unauthorized use of private and confidential personal information has seriously damaged the privacy of individuals. Accessing individuals’ private e-mail conversations and computer records, and collecting and sharing information about individuals gained from their visits to Internet websites and newsgroups is an example of which type of privacy violation?
    (a) Personal (b) Computer monitoring (c) Computer (d) None of the above
  4. Computer monitoring has been praised as robbing workers of the dignity of their work because workers are forced to work at a hectic pace under poor working conditions. (a) True (b) False
  5. Hacking is defined as the authorized access and use of networked computer systems. (a) True (b) False


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