Business Insider has a revealing story today by Julie Bort on business ethics and programmers, here.
There seem to be two problems. One is that programmers sometimes agree to do illegal things (or wrong things) to help less scrupulous marketing people make more money. The other is that more hinges on software than ever before. People can die, in car or airlines crashes, because of software bugs. Major power failures are possible (as in 2003). And all of this skirts the question of malware.
So that brings up the question, should programmers have to be licensed? There already is plenty of voluntary industry certification in many areas. I took some certification tests in the mid 1990s, but maintaining them was a pain. Then I got with Brainbench and had a contract to write a business ethicas certification quiz in early 2003. I have have it around somewhere. It was on an Access database.
The article suggests standards for mandatory business ethics training.