Discuss the importance of confidentiality in professional life. What are the reasons that confidentiality is violated too often?

Confidentiality in professional life is not only a good and necessary practice, it is also mandatory in some cases. Some professionals like lawyers, psychologists, therapist etc have a privileged relationship with their clients. Their clients trust them with sensitive information, and they are legally mandated and ethically motivated to not disclose such information to third parties bar certain extenuating circumstances. Other than this, right to privacy is an universally acknowledged right and is guaranteed by the Indian constitution too. Honest persons with integrity tend to be protect confidential information and privacy of persons even when not legally required to do so.
Issue with confidentiality arises when one person discloses information to another in circumstances where it is reasonable to expect that the information will be held in confidence. Confidence can be breached either in a personal capacity or organizational/professional capacity for or without personal gain.  The reasons for such breach may be:-

  • Careless or feckless attitude
  • Aspiration for financial gain
  • Conflict between personal and professional values
  • Lack of feeling of belongingness to the organization
  • Lack of/disregard towards ethical and moral values
  • Possession of partial knowledge or ignorance
  • Accidental or unintentional revelation of confidential information
  • Required to share confidential information by law (209 words)
Question for UPSC Mains:
Discuss the importance of confidentiality in professional life. What are the reasons that confidentiality is violated too often? (200 words)

Published: January 8, 2017 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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