One of the most critical aspects of business ethics training is confidentiality. The legal and ethical handling of customer, patient or employee information along with insider trading are too of the most crucial aspects of confidentiality in the workplace.
Confidential Customer, Patient or Employee Information
Viewing or sharing confidential customer, patient or employee information without authorization or approval is not acceptable in any workplace.
The best rule of thumb for working with customer, patient or employee data is to assume that the information is confidential.
1. Unless you have specific permission to access and work with the information, then do not view it!
2. Unless you have specific permission to share information, then do not share it!
3. Make sure that you know exactly how to legally store, secure and access information you do have permission to work with and view.
Insider Trading is using confidential information not available to the public to make a decision on whether to buy or sell securities or to advise others to buy or sell securities. For example, if you find out about a pending merger that you know will increase the value of the stock of your organization; you cannot purchase stock in your organization or advise others to purchase stock in your organization.
1. Insider trading is a very serious legal violation and confidential information such as the status of a pending merger or patent should be kept even from close family and friends.
2. Even if you did not tell your family member or friend to purchase stock, you could still be held liable if you released confidential information to them.
3. Employees of third party organizations such as banks, cleaning companies, consultants or Government agencies that discovered non-public information as part of their dealings with the organization can also be charged with insider trading.
4. Jail terms for insider trading can run into multiple years!