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Harboring DataInformation Security, Law, and the Corporation$
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Andrea M. Matwyshyn

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804760089

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804760089.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM STANFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.stanford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Stanford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in SSO for personal use.date: 11 April 2021

Information Security and Patents

Information Security and Patents

Embedding Thickets in Information Security? Cryptography Patenting and Strategic Implications for Information Technology

(p.64) 4 Information Security and Patents
Harboring Data

Greg R. Vetter

Stanford University Press

This chapter discusses the strategic concerns companies face in deciding whether to patent information security methods. It argues that the full promise of cryptography for information security is unrealized. Companies are increasingly patenting security technologies in an effort to expand their portfolios and better protect corporate intangible assets. Cryptographic methods can enable authentication in an electronic environment and help secure information storage, communications, and transactions. Patenting in the field has expanded aggressively, and greater patent density—sometimes described as a “thicket,”—affects both developers and users, and brings with it the potential to chill innovation. This greater patent density suggests the need for countermeasures such as patent pooling, patent-aware standard setting by firms and the government, and portfolio management of patents.

Keywords:   information security, security technologies, cryptography, patent density, patents, patenting

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