Main image of article Survey: What Would You Do If Your Company Leaked User Data?
Picture this: You’re in a meeting, and your manager offers up a solution or service that just doesn’t fit with what you know to be best practices regarding data security. What do you do? Such a scenario should seem familiar to anyone who's followed the recent data and privacy breaches at some of the world's largest tech companies. As Facebook's CEO submits to interrogation by Congressmen, many in the tech community are wondering why Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie even contributed to code that may have helped skew the 2016 elections. Wylie naturally claims that his moral compass points to true north, and that he ultimately desires to speak truth to power. But where was that thinking in 2016 and earlier? How does someone so appalled by a company’s actions not preemptively strike when its motives become clear – before any harm is done? It’s not unique to Facebook, Cambridge Analytica, or even Wylie. We could ask the same questions about companies safeguarding almost any kind of user data from prying eyes. It’s especially alarming when we find cases like Panera Bread, which was essentially storing sensitive data such as usernames, passwords, and emails in plain view. What should a tech pro do if they discover their company engaged in unsafe data practices? Such a conundrum isn't always limited to developers or engineers. This is especially true for larger projects, where dozens or hundreds of people with all sorts of skill-sets look at both the code and final product. Whether it happens in a meeting, code review, or testing, what actions should you take if you see a problem? It’s never an easy consideration, but we want to hear from you! Below, you’ll find a survey with a few options (here's the direct link, in the remote event it doesn't load). Please select your option, then click 'submit.' If you’ve got something to add to the discussion, please feel free to do so in the comments section below. We’ll be writing an article based on your vote and commentary, so please get involved and let everyone know your position.