McAfee has signalled its intention to buy data loss prevention specialist Reconnex in a deal worth $46m.
The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of 2008, and is part of ongoing attempts by leading security vendors to bolster their data protection portfolios.
This latest move by McAfee follows similar acquisitions by rivals including Symantec and EMC in what is seen as one of the hottest areas of the security market.
Reconnex will become McAfee's second data loss prevention acquisition in as many years.
The firm acquired Onigma (renamed DLP Host) in February 2007, allowing the vendor to graft on a server log to its existing offerings to monitor and control data and block sensitive data transfers.
With this latest purchase McAfee is looking to integrate Reconnex's learning technology, which uses a combination of analytics and data and text mining to determine the confidentiality level of information.
"Data protection is the number-one concern of chief information security officers, but today's solutions take too long to deploy and obtain results," said Dave DeWalt, chief executive at McAfee.
"With the pending acquisition of Reconnex, McAfee expects to redefine the entire data protection market."
DeWalt claimed that the purchase would enable McAfee to leapfrog other data protection vendors and reinforce its position as "the largest dedicated security company".
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