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Data collection is the business use of digital channels to assemble information about consumers. The key ethical issue in data collection concerns consumer privacy. Business ethics has long covered topics such as fraud, consumer privacy, and employee rights. However, there is a general gap in knowledge with regard to the emerging field of business practice of large-scale data collection. The collection of data affects multiple stakeholders and creates risks to consumers and businesses, such as financial institutions and social networking companies.

In the past two decades, the Internet has gone from a technology utilized by the more tech-savvy consumer to being regularly accessed by 40% of the global population. In 2003, social networking began gaining popularity with the creation of Myspace. Within a decade, Myspace ...

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