With the evolving of new media such as Facebook and Twitters, people starts to use smartphone to get information and interact with people in order to be trendy. However, someone misuse the technology to achieve their goal. In 4 July 2011, there is news report of News of The World hacked the phone of the victim, Milly Dowler’s family by Guardian News (Davies and Hill, 2011). It said that News of the World hacked the voicemail of the victim’s family in order to get the information that they want. According to Chandrasekhar, Wardrop and Trotman (2011), the case of Milly Dowler is not the only news that News of The World hacked people’s phone in order to get information. There also other victims being hacked by the News of The World such as the families of London who died in July 7 and terrorist bombing of London in 2005 and family of the murder victims (Poeter, 2011).
Under the Data Protection Act 1998, it stated that “Personal data shall be obtained only for one or more specified and lawful purposes, and shall not be further processed in any manner incompatible with that purpose or those purposes” (Your Rights, 2009). According to the Data Protection Act 1998, News of The World had violated the law because they hacked people’s phone in order to get information that they want. This news had brings us to the ethical issue in journalism. The ethical issue in journalism in this case is the way that the journalist gathers the information. The journalist of News of The World cannot hacked people’s phone in order to get the information of the news that they report. The journalist is considers unethical. According to Society of Professional Journalists (2011), it stated that according to code of ethics in Society of Professional Journalists, the journalist should other secret methods such as undercover to gather information.
Davies N, & Hill A, 2011, Missing Milly Dowler’s voicemail was hacked by News of the World, viewed on 14 November 2011, http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/jul/04/milly-dowler-voicemail-hacked-news-of-world
Chandrasekhar I, Wardrop M, Trotman A, 2011, Phone hacking: timeline of the Scandal, viewed on 14 November 2011, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/phone-hacking/8634176/Phone-hacking-timeline-of-a-scandal.html
Poeter D, 2011, How Did News of the World Hack Victims’ Cell Phone?, viewed on 14 November 2011, http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2388157,00.asp#fbid=jsKJVKwXyy-
Your Rights, 2009, Data Protection, viewed on 14 November 2011, http://www.yourrights.org.uk/yourrights/privacy/data-protection/
Society of Professional Jornalists, 2011, SPJ Code of Ethics, viewed on 14 November 2011, http://www.spj.org/ethicscode.asp