The rapid development of computer technologies calls for developing a complex system of ethical standards and norms. The current state of literature provides abundant information about problems and complexities in computer ethics. Unfortunately, little is known of gender relations in computer-mediated environments. The relationship between gender and computers remains poorly understood. Whether there is gender equality in computer ethics is difficult to define, since the current body of research about gender in computer ethics is increasingly scarce. This, however, is not the only problem in the context of understanding gender and its place in computer ethics.
Adam (2008) writes that empirical research in the field of gender and its relation to computer ethics focuses solely on acts and actions that are readily identifiable. As a result, researchers can make clear judgments and easily identify how ethical these acts and actions are (Adam, 2008). Unfortunately, in this situation, many ethical and unethical acts remain beyond reasonable understanding. The lack of understanding with regard to ethical processes in computer-mediated environments leaves little room for the conceptualising gender agenda in computer ethics. Nevertheless, some information is available and supports a thesis that gender does exert considerable influence on computer ethics.
First, women and men display different ethical behaviours and attitudes toward computers: that the prevailing majority of hackers are men is a well-known fact. However, there is no information that explains these gender variations or helps to understand why some women engage in hacking behaviours (Adam, 2008). Second, women and men follow different decision-making patterns - when it comes to computers, men use a definite set of parameters to assess the situation, whereas women rely solely on situational factors (Adam, 2008). The evidence of gender discrimination is too scarce or absent at all. Simultaneously, gender equality and gender relations in computer ethics are profoundly undertheorised (Adam, 2008). As a result, the future research must focus on the development of sound conceptualisations of gender and computer ethics and its relation to feminist perspectives and research.