Unfortunately, the current crisis may have fomented exactly the conditions that could lead to employees breaching digital ethics in the workplace.
For example, many staff members face a financial crisis that has them concerned about job security and their ability to support their families. More than two-thirds of Americans are not "financially healthy," and millions face "extreme financial hardship," according to an October 2020 report by the Financial Health Network.
At the same time, remote working mandates are making more employees feel lonely and anxious, which could have a negative psychological impact driving them to engage in unethical acts. Additionally, remote work can detach the individual from the consequences of their actions and could chip away at loyalty to one's employer. By working remotely, employees may find it easier to circumvent enterprise controls on data flows and the scrutiny of their managers.
And there are multiple avenues for unethical employees to seek financial gain—from using insider information to gain an advantage on the stock market, to leaking or selling confidential data to rivals.