Digital Ethics: How Digital Transformation Changes Business Ethics
Digital Ethics: How Digital Transformation Changes Business Ethics
Sammy Kristamuljana 1
Complying with business ethics is irrelevant. Because, new business ethics are being formed. In addition to new business ethics, the structure of the parties must abide by, the process of running and the expected results of running the business with ethics were also born.
Era That Forces to Change
Ongoing digital transformation does not only force all parties to adopt new technology. Stakeholders are now even required to change their perspective on business ethics practices. The need for change is one of them seen through the incident Tuesday, November 1, 2017. In a hearing with representatives from Facebook, Twitter and Google in Washington D.C., politicians in the US Senate showed their frustration. Because, their hard rebuke is like: "You who should first act, or we will act against you", turned out to be only mediocre by the most influential company officials in this century.
Mark Zuckerberg himself, instead of coming to show the seriousness of the top leaders of Facebook that the Russians have used the company's service platform to influence the public in the US Election on November 8, 2016, only sent representatives to the meeting. He remained at the Facebook headquarters in Silicon Valley, California for a press conference announcing that profits at the end of the third quarter of 2017 had reached 80% of the target, sales had increased by almost 50% and the company's share price reached a record high. Like Facebook, two other US digital technology giants also felt sufficient to respond to the phenomenon of the US presidential election then by just revealing who, what news was being disseminated, the frequency and intensity of the spread, and how infiltration was done by the Russians in spreading the news. including digital media that is used to harm one presidential candidate and benefit the other. That's all, point.
"The powerlessness of regulators and the public demands that the ethical attitude of digital service providers is not limited to events surrounding the US election"
From the beginning of 2017 until the November 1 hearing the US public was haunted by two incidents which were very massive in terms of size. First, the more revealed the overall number of Yahoo user accounts hacked in 2013, the number turned out to be not one but three billion accounts. Secondly, population data and 143 million people hacked credit cards from Equifax - a consumer credit reporting service company - which allegedly occurred in late July 2017 are feared that they will soon start being offered on the black market. Who and how to be responsible? In addition to business ethics, those who must adhere to new business ethics that are being formed are undergoing change. While this change on the part is understandable considering that when the public is asked: "Who must obey business ethics?" Then the stereotypical answer is: "Company!" Corporate compliance responsibilities in carrying out business ethics only come to the disclosure of those customers who use their service platforms for unethical and illegal purposes. The rest of the responsibility for compliance is transferred to the users of the information disseminated, and also the government, especially regulators, the practice of using digital-based information technology.
"All parties realize that in the current state of digital transformation, existing laws and their development are far behind compared to the technological advances adopted by the company"
In facing the "bargaining position" of stronger companies, regulators, customers, and users of information that are distributed temporarily can only be reactive. Only when the customer and the public at large feel too aggrieved they will "shout" asking the regulator to act. However, like the example of hacking in the US, the regulator cannot do further than asking the company's willingness to disclose what actually happened, including how much damage suffered by the customer and / or the public.
The hope that regulators also act ethically for some has been demonstrated through the issuance of the Public Service Announcement by the US Federal Investigation Agency (FBI) on July 17, 2017. The contents are to be careful with children's toys connected to the internet because of the potential used to violate private rights and the right to be willing or unwilling to be contacted, which is in the child.
The announcement also comes with a brief explanation of the risks that can arise, why those risks can affect the child, and the steps that parents should take to minimize that risk. The question then is that whether this ethical action is sufficient. Because, observations in the field showed that very few parents were aware of the announcement, while if they had already bought it, they did not think long enough to supply all the data requested by the toy manufacturer via the internet in order to immediately operate the toy for the child.
New Compliance Demands
Examples of company willingness and regulators involved in the user's problem basically reflect ethical actions. This is a form of compliance with running a "business" ethically or commonly abbreviated as business ethics.
Pay attention to the following picture.
Figure 1 quadrant I shows the condition that ethical actions are mutually reinforcing, with adherence to applicable legal provisions and vice versa. Conditions in quadrant II are most expected to occur in the current digital transformation, where those who are expected to act ethically then dare to act in compliance with business ethics even if there is no law. Quadrant III is also a condition in the current era of digital transformation, because there is not (yet) a law, so those who do not act ethically will be many. Quadrant IV is a condition where the law already exists but the tendency to act unethically remains high, for example the hacking party is a violator of the law and at the same time behaves unethically.
If conditions in quadrant II are expected to occur then in the future at least three parties - namely business people, regulators and customers of digital service products - are required to improve their integrity to support ethical business practices. As identified in the examples of events discussed earlier, customers are the weakest party because of their "ignorance" about the risk of using or consuming digital goods and / or services.
"With the development of digital technology capabilities that enable companies to offer products" contextually "- that is, according to the place, time, condition of cognition, emotions and desires of prospective buyers who are targeted - education of customers must take top priority"
The priority of education is to enable customers to have levels of vasopressin and oxytocin hormones that are relatively equal to business people and regulators. Both types of hormones, according to research in the field of neuroscience, are regulators of the compensatory system in the human brain that influence the urge to act ethically. *
SourceForum Manajemen Prasetiya Mulya Vol.31. No.5)