A.S.I.S. CODE OF ETHICS
FOR INFORMATION PROFESSIONALS[ 1]

Proposed Revision by Thomas J. FROEHLICH

Current Draft before Board February, 1992

ASIS recognizes the plurality of uses and users of information technologies, services, systems and products and the diversity of goals or objectives, sometimes conflicting, among vendors, producers, mediators, and users of information systems. ASIS mandates high standards for its members, identifying the following areas of responsibility:

Responsibility to Employers/Clients/System Users

To act faithfully for their employers or clients in professional matters;

To uphold each user's, provider's or employer's rights to privacy and confidentiality and shall respect whatever proprietary rights belong to them:

by minimizing data collected about clients, patrons, or users, and by limiting access to, providing proper security for and ensuring proper disposal of such data insofar as it does not conflict with the proper goals and constraints of their organizations,

by not disclosing information obtained during confidential interviews, except when such disclosure is mandated by law or in accord with proper policies of their employers or the proper rights of their clients.

To treat fairly all persons regardless of race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age or national origin.

Responsibility to the Profession

To truthfully represent themselves and the information systems which they utilize or which they represent:

by not knowingly making false statements or providing erroneous information or fail to inform clients, sponsors, or employers of the limitations, conditions and constraints of the system,

by informing their employers, clients or sponsors of any circumstances that could lead to a conflict of interest,

by not using their position beyond their authorized limits or by not using their credentials to misrepresent themselves.

To be and to remain competent and qualified, and to foster competence and deter incompetence among fellow professionals:

by only undertaking assignments for which they are qualified, and for which there is reasonable expectation of meeting requirements in a timely fashion,

by following and promoting standards of conduct in accord with the best current practices,

by undertaking their research conscientiously: in gathering, tabulating or interpreting data; in proper approval procedures for human subjects; or in producing or disseminating research results,

by seeking, accepting and offering honest criticism of their work and by pursuing ongoing professional development and by encouraging colleagues and professionals to do the same,

by performing services in a manner that enhances or does not discredit the profession,

by adhering to principles of due process and equality of opportunity in peer relationships or personnel actions.

Responsibility to Society

To improve, to the best of their means and abilities, the information systems in which they work or which they represent:

by resisting all forms of censorship, inappropriate selection and acquisitions policies, and biases in information selection, provision and dissemination and by striving to correct errors or remedy biases and inaccuracies in information systems,

by making known any biases, errors and inaccuracies which exist and can not be or have not been remedied,

by providing the most reliable and accurate information and the degree of credibility of the sources as known or unknown.

To promote free and equal access to information, within the scope permitted by their organizations or work, and to resist procedures that promote discriminatory practices in access to and provision of information:

by seeking to extend public appreciation and awareness of information availability and provision and the role of information professionals in providing such information,

by freely reporting, publishing or disseminating information, subject to legal and proprietary restraints of vendors, producers and employers, and the best interests of their employers, or clients.

Information professionals shall engage in principled conduct whether on their own behalf or at the request of employers, colleagues, clients, agencies or the profession: unprincipled conduct shall be challenged or disclosed.


[1] Dedicated to the Memory of Diana WOODWARD (A.S.I.S.: American Society for Information Science).


Edited 94/10/04
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