7 April 2003 Network Associates has announced its second big purchase in a week with the $120 million cash buy of intrusion detection software vendor Entercept Security Technologies.
The acquisition will compliment the technology of IntruVert, which it bought for $100 million on 1 April. Entercept specialises in host-based intrusion detection that deploys a combination of signatures of known attacks and anomaly detection.
IntruVert provides network-based intrusion detection.
Network Associates’ main competitors will be Cisco Systems, which bought start-up Okena in January in order to add intrusion detection and prevention capabilities to its PIX firewall range; as well as Internet Security Systems (ISS) and Symantec, which has also acquired a number of companies in the intrusion detection sector in the last year.
The two purchases represent a u-turn for Network Associates. In the last two years it has been shedding units in markets in which it was not either number one or number two, such as encryption and, ironically, intrusion detection.
That followed a frenetic acquisition spree in the late 1990s when it tried to build a wide portfolio of security products so that it could offer comprehensive security management suites — a mirror image of the system management frameworks that companies such as IBM Tivoli and Computer Associates were pushing at the time.