Many global organizations are now re-examining
business processes and outcomes to accommodate changes with the help of
emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things, Big Data, Artificial
Intelligence, automation, and more.
This digital transformation represents the
response organizations need to give to meet rising customer expectations,
deliver personalized experiences, and respond to fierce competition with a
standout approach. Studies
have shown that 33 percent of customers in the
U.S. would switch brands right after one instance of poor service.
Another study by Hubspot
found that 55 percent
of customers are now less loyal to brands than they ever were. Several factors
have brought this change. One of them being instant value. Customers now look
for immediate value and transact with any brand where they can get it — that,
instead of sticking with their brand of choice.
The era of smartphones and the internet has
made information available to customers, and they are leveraging platforms to
choose between brands for every transaction. If companies have to retain their
customers, they need to step up and leverage technologies to meet customer
demands as they surge.
However, digital technologies are not devoid of
risks. Businesses that leverage IoT, data, and analytics without as much
concern for data security end up getting breached and losing customer trust.
Cybercrimes are increasing to an all-new level. Companies are being forced to
prioritize digital ethics, and data security instead of blindly applying
technologies that could potentially harm sensitive information private.
The Need for Business Ethics When Going Digital
Ethics define the line between the right and
the wrong, concerning how people should act. In times when customers are
looking beyond price tags to build brand loyalty, digital ethics have taken
center stage. Brand reputation and values are as critical today as the quality
of services and products offered.
Ethics at an organizational level, boil down to
individuals. If business leaders fail to impart the right training to their
teams, they might leave room for interpretation and, thus, errors.
The top five digital ethics for any
organization today are:
- Privacy, security, and integrity-focused design - While it seems lucrative for businesses to generate
insights and more revenue from data, the practice has sufficient risks
associated with it. Unethical behavior or simple negligence can lead to a
cyberattack and uncover unethical practices within any organization. The
way data is collected, stored, and managed is an ethical issue before a
legal one. Companies should also focus on the concept of informed consent
when collecting sensitive customer data.
- Promote trust - Data consumers,
whether individuals or organizations, must be able to trust the integrity
of the data. Companies that collect, store, and manage this data must
ensure its integrity is kept intact for organizations to leverage it.
Organizations need to be sure what was put in their database hasn't
- Eliminate bias - When individuals
think and act in a way, presuming stuff, that confirms their view of the
world, they encourage bias. For instance, choosing datasets out of a
complete database to support digital transformation and test services can
be viewed as a form of unethical practice for those expecting these
activities are performed with a high level of integrity and impartiality.
Biased data will make machine learning systems biased, and that would be
unfair to the less popular notions and ideas that some communities,
religions, countries carry.
- Accountability - When we build
artificial intelligence systems and smart algorithms that can access
social media data and feed it to decision engines, we must think about who
is accountable if the system falters. For instance, if a financial
services company uses an ML-based algorithm to make decisions that would
usually be made by qualified and regulated professionals, questions raise
as to where the accountability lies. Thus,l organizations must ensure
digital services are not used as a method to avoid or reduce their
- Ethical culture - Organizations share
values and beliefs within their business and with the people who buy from
them. Values designate what an organization stands for. While those are
conveniently published on the company websites, living and walking them
every day is a different story organization must take care of.
Digital ethics can increase the longevity of
digital transformation efforts- making them reliable and secure. At
MaxMobility, we put maximum focus on ensuring we follow the necessary digital
ethics in delivering high-quality business solutions to our customers.
As cybercrime skyrockets, organizations need to
strengthen the foundation on which they rest their security ethics and
practices. Too many known names had to go through the ordeal of dealing
The result? Lost trust and loyalty.
Governments and organizations are waking up to
address the issue of loosened ethics. This year, the European
Commission acknowledged this critical concept by releasing a series of recommendations
that stress the need for reliable and secure algorithms and data protection
rules to ensure business interests don't precede the public's well-being.
Besides that, the Australian
exploring policies that would ensure that AI applications are developed and
applied responsibly. In turn, this would address concerns such as data
security, accountability, privacy, transparency, and equity.
Data Security and Ethics at the Core of Digital Transformation
Every time businesses build an API or a
service; they will have to address and consider the underlying ethical and
security issues. Accenture suggests that security will be personalized,
and the context of the use of services will define security, not the device or
authentication. Wherever data is required to personalize services and
organizations capture Personally Identifiable Information (PII), companies will
have to deal with high standards of data ethics and security.
Organizations will need to put ethical data
practices high on priority throughout the decision-making processes so that
risks can be identified and dealt with at the right time. At MaxMobility, we
prioritize data security and integrate testing and security into the entire
development process instead of thinking about it toward the end.
According to an Accenture
report, 81 percent of business
executives agree that as the business value of data increases, the risks
businesses face from inappropriate data handling also grow exponentially.
Developing a code of ethics and following security best practices can be an
organization's way of letting its customers know they care for an important.
Security breaches can tarnish a brand's image
for a long time and make customers uneasy transacting with them again. As a
rule of thumb, businesses can have agreed-upon ethical practices and norms that
reflect their values as an organization. While 83 percent of business
executives wouldn't argue on the importance of trust for a digital economy,
there is a lot of scope for activities in advancing their data ethics and
security practices to address the challenges in cybercrime.