What is Computer Crime, Ethics and Security?



Computers are used now-a-days in almost all fields of life. This age is called the age of computers. Computers are used education, business, manufacturing, design, entertainment, research and development. It one of the greatest inventions of our time. But as some great inventions  are misused by few people to cause harm, similarly computers can also be used to cause harm.


You must be aware of certain ethics related to the use of computers. Ethics are beliefs and rules. These rules state what is right and what is wrong. Ethics are important in our day-to-day life also. The advancement of technology makes it possible for unethical and criminal activities to be carried out in more sophisticated way.
Children should thus be aware of moral and ethical issues, and must develop a good sense of social responsibility. There are always people who are violating the rules of society and ‘money’ or sometimes just for ‘funs’.
Let us discuss some of the major ethical issues in the world of computers now-a-days.

Intellectual Property Rights

Property is something you own. You have right over your property. It is protected by law. Similarly, ideas and thoughts produced by the mind are also protected by law. It is illegal to use them without the permission of the owner or producer. The rights related to literary or artistic work, inventions and discoveries are called Intellectual Property Rights.

Software Piracy

Software Piracy is the illegal reproduction and distribution of the software applications. Software piracy has a significant impact on the economy. It leads to job losses and revenue losses to the software companies.

The different forms of software piracy are:
  • End-User Piracy : All software are licensed. When some copies software without the appropriate license for each copy, it is called the End-User Piracy.
  • Internet piracy : Unauthorised copies download over the internet falls under Internet piracy.
  • Pre-Installed Software Piracy : When a computer manufacturer takes one copy of a particular software and illegally installs it on more than one computer, it performs Pre-Installed Software Piracy.
  • Counterfeiting : People make duplicate CDs of original software and sell them at low price. This activity falls under counterfeiting.
  • Online Auction Piracy : This is selling of software that is never authorised for resale by a third party. Some of the limitations of pirated software are :

  1. no warranty protection 
  2. can contains viruses



Privacy is an important aspect of life. It is unethical to infringe the privacy of other people without the consent of the person. If you are given the permission to access someone else’s computer and allowed to view his or her information, you must not disclose it to other people.


As in the case of other systems and fields, there are also crimes related to computers. Computer crimes result from the deliberate tampering with data and information.

The people who are associated with computer crimes are often called Hackers, Crackers, virus Programmers, Breachers and information Warriors. Whatever name they may have, they are the people who violate computer security.

A hacker is a person who breaks into a computer system to get illegal access to the information stored there. A hacker may not cause any harm to the system or organisation but hacking is still illegal and unethical.

A cracker is a  person who breaks into a computer system just like a hacker, with the intention to steal password, files or programs for unauthoriseduse. They may sell the information to some other people for money.  Crakers cause financial damagesto an organisation.


Computer security includes procedures and techniques that are designed to protect a computer from accidental or internal theft, unauthorised access or manipulation. Computer security  breaches are often viewed as a disaster for the user because they can cause serious damages to  both the individual user and the organisation. Such damages may include loss of revenue, valuable data loss, productivity loss and many more which may even lead to bankruptcy.

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