McAfee Buys Out Data Loss Prevention Specialist Reconnex

McAfee snaps up Reconnex to add deeper data loss prevention capabilities. The move, which follows several acquisitions in the DLP space by Symantec, EMC and others in 2007, is part of a broader data protection strategy for McAfee.

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McAfee is making a play in the data loss prevention space with its July 31 buyout of Reconnex.

The $46 million deal is expected to close in the third quarter of 2008. McAfee's move comes after a number of prominent acquisitions in the DLP space in 2007. These include Symantec's purchase of Vontu, Trend Micro's acquisition of Provilla and EMC's acquisition of Tablus, to name a few.

The Reconnex acquisition is intended to round out a data protection strategy that includes integrating the encryption technology acquired from SafeBoot and the central management capabilities of ePolicy Orchestrator.

"Data protection is the No. 1 concern of chief information security officers. But today's DLP solutions take too long to deploy and obtain results," Dave DeWalt, CEO of McAfee, said in a statement. DeWalt continued:

"With the pending acquisition of Reconnex, McAfee expects to redefine the entire data protection market by bringing together a leader in the hottest segment with our comprehensive portfolio of data protection technologies. We expect that this will enable us to leapfrog other data protection vendors and to reinforce our position as the largest dedicated security company."

In purchasing Reconnex, McAfee is getting its hands on Reconnex's learning technology, which uses a combination of analytics and data and text mining to help organizations determine what information should be considered confidential and who should have access to it. The technology works by identifying where key information is going and who is sending out information, and looking for any commonalities between data transactions.

Reconnex CEO John Peters said he expects the acquisition to help McAfee solve the problems that make DLP deployments difficult.

"Our technology helps businesses answer the two fundamental questions of what to protect and from whom," he said in a statement. "McAfee will be better equipped to help organizations address the complexity and time involved in the deployment and management of data protection."

After the deal has closed, Reconnex's technology will be incorporated into McAfee's Data Protection business unit.