CA to buy data-leak prevention vendor

Orchestria acquisition would mark CA's third security deal in three months

CA Monday announced an agreement to acquire for an undisclosed sum data-leak prevention vendor Orchestria, boosting the software maker's security, privacy and compliance technologies.

The acquisition, expected to close by month's end, will be the third security buy for CA in as many months and company executives say Orchestria's DLP technology will enhance CA's identity and access management products with capabilities to control access and set policies based on a user's identity and role.

"CA is traditionally strong on the identity management side, but we haven't gone down to the data elements before. This acquisition is a great opportunity for CA to tie security all the way back to identity and better determine who has access to what and ultimately drive different access rights to different systems," says Dave Hansen, corporate senior vice president and general manager of CA's Security Management business unit.

(View a slideshow on the hottest tech M&A deals of 2008.)

CA plans to integrate Orchestria's technology and 84 employees -- based in the United Kingdom. and New York -- into CA's security business and offer the DLP technology stand-alone and integrated into CA's broader suite. Hansen says he will share more details around product integrations and perform demonstrations at the RSA Conference 2009 in April.

"This segment of the market is growing fast and the reality is that to solve compliance-driven problems we have to get better at extending security to the data elements," Hansen says. "Orchestria has a holistic solution that goes from the gateway to the desktop and laptop that will really enable CA to broaden its security reach into this market."

The concept of tying identities and data more closely together to secure environments as well as content falls under the realm of role-based access management or broader entitlement management technologies. Entitlement management products can, for instance, pull identity management data from LDAP, Active Directory or human resource directories and integrate with identity and access management tools from CA, IBM, Oracle and others to help customers build entitlement policies. Once built, the technologies monitor access across a company to determine if actions taken are in line with pre-set policies.

While CA says its primary competitors in the identity and access management market -- IBM and Oracle -- don't have such DLP capabilities, Symantec does. The company acquired Vontu in 2007 and announced plans to integrate the DLP capabilities into its own desktop, network and storage products. Vontu's technology includes the ability to crawl through data resources across the network to seek out sensitive data. That's a capability that Symantec intends to put to use to make its products more content-aware.

"We were not competing in this space, and our two main competitors don't have data-leak prevention," Hansen says.

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