Symantec Mum On Vontu Acquisition Plans

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Symantec on Monday declined to comment on industry speculation that it's about to acquire San Francisco-based data leak prevention firm Vontu.

A spokesperson from Vontu also declined to comment on the rumored deal, which is reportedly in the $300 million to $350 million range.

Vontu, which focuses on monitoring data at rest as well as data in motion, believes that the cataloging of all information access is the best way to control who accesses sensitive data and where that data can travel.

The deal would be relatively unsurprising because Vontu has been a Symantec partner since 2005, and already licenses a variety of data, document and content matching technologies to the Cupertino, Calif.-based security giant through an OEM agreement.

In addition, many industry experts expected that Symantec would move quickly to bolster its data leak prevention portfolio after McAfee last week announced plans to acquire privately held data encryption and leak prevention vendor SafeBoot for $350 million. McAfee also bought Israel-based DLP vendor Onigma last October for $20 million.

Vontu, which also has offices in New York and the U.K., has taken a mostly direct route to market, with less than a third of its revenue going through about 20 channel partners in North America.

Data leak prevention is becoming crucial to every industry, agrees David Sockol, president of Emagined Security, a San Carlos, Calif.-based solution provider and Symantec partner.

"Any organization that's adding data leak prevention to their arsenal these days is taking a step in the right direction, and I think Vontu would be a healthy fit for Symantec's portfolio," Sockol said.

Larry Dannemiller, president of BSSI, a Houston-based security integrator and an early adopter of DLP technology, said interest in DLP technology shows no signs of waning anytime soon.

"Much like a jewelry store takes inventory of its jewels, organizations need to know where their sensitive data is stored on their networks," he said.

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