Cisco Buys WLAN Security Smarts

Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) is buying software security firm Meetinghouse Data Communications Inc. for $43.7 million in a move that reflects the importance of secure network access via WLAN. (See Cisco to Buy Meetinghouse.)

The move marks the return of Cisco's roving acquisition eye to the network security sector after it snapped up three specialist companies in the middle of 2005. (See Cisco Nets NetSift for $30M, Cisco Buys Startup for $1.2M per Employee, and Cisco Chomps FineGround.)

It's also a reminder that fierce rival Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR) has been stepping on Cisco's enterprise toes. Analysts predicted Cisco could make a wireless LAN security acquisition following Juniper's purchase of Funk Software in December 2005. (See Cisco's Funk Breakdown.)

So what is Cisco getting for its cash, apart from 77 new staff?

Get the whole story at Unstrung.

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

materialgirl 12/5/2012 | 3:49:31 AM
re: Cisco Buys WLAN Security Smarts When EKC ponied up $2.1B for RSAS, they were clear on two points. One was that without end-to-end authentication and encryption, you cannot have real security. Second was that without real security, you are at a "severe disadvantage", as customers are "demanding it".

The key management and encryption at RSAS are what led to the bidding war that ended up in a $2.1B price tag. In other words, expect "built in" security, and how to manage it painlessly, to become a bigger and bigger issue. Perhaps CSCO was on the other end of that bigging war and lost. Now, they need to piece together another solution.
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