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A Vulnerable SystemThe History of Information Security in the Computer Age$
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Andrew J. Stewart

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781501758942

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501758942.001.0001

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The Dot-Com Boom and the Genesis of a Lucrative Feedback Loop

The Dot-Com Boom and the Genesis of a Lucrative Feedback Loop

Chapter:
(p.55) Chapter 4 The Dot-Com Boom and the Genesis of a Lucrative Feedback Loop
Source:
A Vulnerable System
Author(s):

Andrew J. Stewart

Publisher:
Cornell University Press
DOI:10.7591/cornell/9781501758942.003.0005

This chapter evaluates the dot-com boom, which was a speculative bubble wherein the value of internet stocks rose for an extended period beyond anything that could be justified on economic grounds. Like other speculative bubbles, the dot-com boom was caused by an invention that created inflated hopes of financial profits. The World Wide Web provided people with the ability to consume entertaining content, to communicate in new ways, and to purchase products and services online. Since the web was a recently created set of technologies and protocols, the study of web security was therefore new by definition. Both Microsoft and Netscape struggled with how to secure mobile code. The two popular types of mobile code were Java and ActiveX, and each approached security differently. The chapter then considers the feedback loop that was created between hackers and the commercial security industry, which was a powerful engine that caused the size of the market for information security products to skyrocket.

Keywords:   dot-com boom, internet stocks, World Wide Web, web security, Microsoft, Netscape, mobile code, computer hackers, commercial security industry, information security

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