The information age is the age we live in today, and with the .
information age comes an age of ethics. When we deal with the new .
technologies introduced every day, we need to decide what we must .
consider ethical and unethical. We must consider all factors so that .
the use of the information readily available to many persons is not .
abused. "Information technology will be the most fundamental area of .
ethical concern for business in the next decade" (Houston 2). The most .
widely used tool of the information age is the computer, whether it be .
a PC or a network of computer systems. As we enter the information age .
the newness and power of information technologies tests the ethics of .
the average person, not just the criminal and causes thousands of .
computer crimes to be committed daily. The most common computer crime .
committed daily, some aware and many not, is the illegal sharing of .
computer software. Software is any of the programs used in operating a .
digital computer, as input and output programs, as defined by Funk and .
Wagnalls Standard Desk Dictionary. When you purchase computer .
software, you purchase it with the understanding that it will be for .
use on a single computer, once installed on that system, it is not to .
be loaded on any other computer. However many people are not aware of .
this understanding, and many load a program on a couple of computers .
or on a whole network of computer systems not aware that they are .
committing a crime. Even though you probably will not be prosecuted .
for loading a program on a friends computer, this is where your ethics .
come in. Do you consider anything when you share a program with .
others? If not then consider the programmers of the software who are .
denied compensation for their developments every time you distribute a .
piece of software. "Why is it that people who wouldn't think of.
stealing pack of gum will copy a $500 piece of software" (Houston 3)? .