Information Technology - Issues and effects of changes to information
systems: social effects arising from invasion of privacy
Invasion of privacy
Read these case studies and answer/discuss the questions provided in order
to analyse the issues surrounding information systems and invasion of
Case study one
Maree had worked at Silvers Shoes for twelve months as a data entry operator. Each morning after arriving at work she would spend up to thirty minutes responding to emails that had arrived overnight. Much of the email contained jokes and personal messages from friends.
One morning, Marees supervisor called her into his office and informed her that her email had been monitored (in other words, read on a regular basis!) by the network administrator. Due to the fact that she spent so much company time on personal email, she was told that she had lost her job.
1. Did a breach of privacy occur in this situation?
2. Was the company justified in its use of the information about Marees email use?
3. Maree claims that she was unfairly dismissed. What arguments might she use to support her case?
Case study two
Bill, a government Medicare worker, is approached by a reporter from a popular current affairs programme. The reporter wants any details Bill can give him about recent medical claims made by prominent politicians. The reporter argues that it is in the publics interest to know if politicians are physically or mentally fit enough to do their jobs.The reporter offers Bill a large sum of money in exchange for any information he can provide.
Do YOU believe what Bill is being asked to do is an invasion of privacy or in the public interest? Justify your answer.
2. Which laws would relate to Bills actions if he sold the information requested by the reporter?
3 Bill is a government employee. How are non-government organisations regulated in terms of the confidential information they can share with others?
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