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Purpose of the Assessment:


The purpose of this assignment is to develop skills in research, critical analysis and academic writing of high standard. On completion of this assignment students will:


  • Identifying potential ethical and social issues resultant from business ethics.
  • Preparing written report on ethical and social issues pertaining to business ethics.
  • Interpreting professional codes of practice as developed by industry bodies.
  • Discussing ethical solution in accordance with professional standards and codes of practice.
  • Identifying, describing and discussing situations where ethical and social issues may occur and
  • Explaining ethical solutions so that ethical standards are achieved and maintained and society benefits.


Students must be able to generate ideas at abstract levels and support their strategies with strong reasoning. Students must strengthen critical thinking skills by answering and solving the assignment.


Description of the Assessment:


This assignment is to develop skills in academic and effective writing particularly in ethics, professional communication research, management or leadership.


Consider the following business case study and


  • Identify, set out and discuss relevant issues, principles and cases, as appropriate;
  • Use statutes and cases to support your arguments, as appropriate;
  • Analyse, argue or discuss as required by the task questions; and find, read and use other resources.
  • Answer the set question; use good logic and structure;


You will be assessed on the extent to which you have achieved above and you are required to use good English expression, correct spelling, good punctuation and grammar and have proof read your work.


Case Study/Problem Based Learning: Ethics, Ethical Issues and Ethical Dilemma

Whistle – Blower divides IT security community


As a member of the X-Force, Mike Lynn analysed online security threats for Internet Security Systems (ISS), a company whose clients include businesses and government agencies across the world. In early 2005, Lynn began investigating a flaw in the internet operating systems (ISO) used by Cisco routers. Through reverse engineering, he discovered that it was possible to create a network worm that could propagate itself as it attacked and took control of routers across the Internet. Lynn`s discovery was momentous, and he decided that he had to speak out and let IT security professionals and the public know about the danger.


Lynn had informed ISS and Cisco of his intentions to talk at a Black Hat conference—a popular meeting of computer hackers—and all three parties entered discussions with the conference managers to decide what information Lynn would be allowed to convey. Two days before the presentation, Cisco and ISS pulled the plug. Cisco employees tore out 10 pages from the conference booklet, and ISS asked that Lynn speak on a different topic—Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) security.


In a dramatic move, Lynn resigned from ISS on the morning of the conference and decided to give the presentation as originally planned. Within a few hours of his presentation, Cisco had filed suit against Lynn, claiming that he had stolen information violated Cisco`s intellectual property rights. [1] [2] “I feel I had to do what`s right for the country and the national infrastructure,” Lynn explained [3]


Lynn`s words might have sounded more credible had his presentation not been titled "The Holy Grail: Cisco IOS Shell code and Remote Execution" and had Lynn not chosen a Black Hat annual conference as the venue for his crucial revelation. [4]


Ethics in Information Technology – George W. Reynolds


Discussion Questions


  1. Do you think that Mike Lynn acted in a responsible manner? Why and why not?
  2. Do you think that Cisco and ISS were right to pull the plug on Lynn’s presentation at the Black Hat conference? Why and why not?
  3. Outline more reasonable approach toward communicating the flaws in the Cisco routers that would have led to the problem being promptly addressed without stirring up animosity among the parties involved?



Bibliography [1]

R. McMillan, "Black Hat: ISS Researcher Quits Job to Dtail Cisco Flaws," July 2005.


R. Lemos, "CISCO, ISS file Suit against Rogue Researcher," SecurityFocus 2005.


A. Sulivan, "Hackers Race to Expose Cisco Internet Flaw," newsgroups, 2005.


B. Schneier, "Cisco Harrasses Security Researcher," Schneier on Security (Blog) July 2005.

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