You notice someone doing something that you think may be unethical. You don’t know the person committing the act very well, but you have no relationship whatsoever to the person who will be adversely effected from this act. Muddying the waters, it appears that this act – while unethical – will result in just ends (in the grand scheme of things). The person committing the act is someone you have to interact with on a regular basis, and you’ve enjoyed working with them, but you are afraid that revealing the act could get the individual in some trouble – or worse.
So what do you do?
You could pull the person aside and confront them. That way you may find out if it was intentional deception or just a mistake. You may not find out either way, but things may work out anyway. It turns out the case worked out in spite of our confrontation, in spite of the truth. However, I’m still not sure how much I can trust this individual. At least I can live with myself.