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Ethics in Computer Science is now finally gaining some well deserved attention. With the advent of Big Data, Cloud Computing, and the Internet of Things, much of our daily life is happening through digital channels. As most of us have learned, developers do not consider security to be an important point, imagine how much they consider the social aspect of their product or code. This is a huge problem, not only because it presents security and privacy risks for the users, but also presents moral dilemmas for hackers and researchers.
Since my PirateBay blocking study, I have become interested in ethics in computer science. In that study I gathered personally identifiable information, to be able to prove that the website blockade was ineffective. These kinds of moral dilemmas are hard to judge, and in computer science we have no history of teaching or awareness about this.
At the University of Amsterdam, we have started an ethical committee for the System and Network Engineering Master. In this talk we describe how and why we started this committee, and also look back at our first results.