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McAfee ties up SafeBoot buy for $350m

Encryption plus anti-malware to counter data loss worries

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McAfee has stumped up $350m to buy data encryption and access control vendor SafeBoot. The deal, announced Monday, allows McAfee to offer a broader range of end-point security products and services to its enterprise clients as well as offering enhanced mobile phone security products to handset manufacturers and telcos.

SafeBoot's Data Protection Suite enables users to encrypt individual files and folders as well as the entire local hard drive on a range of mobile devices, including laptops, smart phones, USB drives and PDAs.

The technology also enables users to encrypt file servers and provides protection so confidential files remain secure as they move throughout an organisation.

In a statement, McAfee said privately owned SafeBoot's technologies compliment its own anti-virus, management, and intrusion prevention product lines. McAfee is looking to use SafeBoot's technologies and marketing muscle to capitalise on the "highly under-penetrated" data protection market.

Both SafeBoot and McAfee are active in the mobile security arena. By combining the two product lines McAfee hopes to create a suite of integrated device protection and data security products.

The acquisition, subject to regulatory review, is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2007.

"With the acquisition of SafeBoot, McAfee becomes a leader in the fast-growing $1bn encryption market and we will be able to offer a complete data protection solution that combines SafeBoot's device, full-disk and content encryption with McAfee's data loss prevention solutions," McAfee chief executive officer and president Dave DeWalt said. "This combination helps advance our Security Risk Management strategy and extend our leadership at the end-point." ®

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