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50 Examples of Technology Ethics

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Technology ethics are principles of right and wrong that can be used to govern technology including factors such as technology risks and individual rights. The following are common examples of technology ethics.
Collection and use of personal data.
The use of personal data for employment, housing and other decisions that impact a person’s life.
The use of surveillance technologies.
Fairness and bias in algorithms.
Fairness and bias in AI.
The use of AI to make critical decisions.
The use of AI to make a medical diagnosis.
Ethical implications of the development and use of robots.
The use of robotic systems in surgery.
Ethics of self-driving cars and their decisions.
Informed consent for medical research.
Bioethics and the use of biotechnology.
Ethical concerns related to genetic testing, gene editing and genetic privacy.
The use of genetic information in insurance and employment decisions.
Ethical issues related to cloning.
Ethics related to implantable medical devices such as pacemakers.
The obligation to protect systems and data from cybersecurity threats.
Accountability and liability for cybersecurity incidents.
Transparency about cybersecurity incidents.
The ethics of hacking for security testing purposes.
The energy use of technology such as cryptocurrency.
The environmental impact of technology.
Transparency regarding the energy consumption and environmental impact of technology services.
The protection of whistleblowers who disclose unethical use of technology.
Internet of things and the embedding of networked devices into everyday things.
The impact of social media on society.
The impact of algorithms that suggest content on society.
Internet censorship and its impact on freedom of speech and society in general.
The digital divide and providing equal access to technology and technology education.
Energy production and its environmental and social impact.
Greenwashing and the inaccurate promotion of technologies as environmentally friendly.
Risks related to nuclear power and weapons.
3D printing and intellectual property infringement.
The use of copyrighted material by machine learning.
Risks related to nanotechnology.
The impact of drones on quality of life.
The use of drones for surveillance.
Risk and ethics of autonomous military technology.
Cyborgs and direct brain-computer communication.
Disposal and recycling of electronic waste.
Risks and pollution related to space junk.
Environmental impact of rocket launches.
Misinformation and the creation and dissemination of deepfake content.
Social problems created by technology such as technology addiction.
Ethics of enhancing human abilities using technology.
Privacy, freedom and smart city technology.
The use of AI in education.
Screen time and its impact on children.
Social credit systems and their impact on society and quality of life.
Ethics of using AI to make decisions where no human understands how the decision was made.
More about technology ethics:

Access Rights

Access to empowering technology as a right or freedom.


The rules of accountability for decisions made by technology.

Digital Rights

Protection of intellectual property rights, privacy and personality rights.


How to govern technologies that have potential to damage shared resources.

Existential Risk

Technologies that represent a threat to global quality of life or extinction of advanced life on earth.


Technology provides tools that can be used to monitor and control societies raising broad questions related to freedom.

Health & Safety

Health and safety risks posed by technologies.

Human Enhancement

Human genetic engineering and human-machine integration.

Human Judgement

When do decisions require human judgement and when can they be automated?


When does automation decrease quality of life?

Permanent Records

Retention of personally identifiable information.

Precautionary Principle

Who decides that a new technology is safe?


Protection of privacy rights.


What due diligence is required to ensure information security?

Self Modifying Technology

The unpredictable nature of certain types of artificial intelligence such as recursive self-improvement.

Self Replicating Technology

Are self replicating systems likely to become grey goo?

Technology Predictability

Questions around algorithms and artificial intelligence that humans may view as largely unpredictable and cryptic. For example, is it a violation of due diligence for an organization to implement technologies that it doesn't understand?

Technology Proliferation

Ethics, governance and risk management tend to lag the spread of a new technology.

Technology Transparency

Transparency is the practice of clearly explaining how a technology works and what data it collects.

Terms Of Service

Ethics related to legal agreements such as terms of service.
Next: Technology Risk
More about technology ethics:
Cultural Lag
Culture Lag
Dark Patterns
Digital Divide
Embrace, Extend ...
Net Neutrality
Precautionary Principle
More ...
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