RSA, the security arm of EMC, has announced plans to buy privately held Tablus, a developer of data-loss prevention software.

The acquisition gives RSA a toehold in the emerging market for securing against insider threats, such as thefts of proprietary information. It also continues the company's strategy of buying its way into new security markets.

RSA did not disclose financial details of the deal, but said the purchase will add data discovery, monitoring and classification and data loss prevention solutions to its current data security offerings. RSA said it expects the transaction to close in the fourth quarter.

RSA said it intends to merge Tablus' products with its EMC Infoscape information-management offering. This will create a "common platform" designed to help customers discover, classify and make policy-based decisions on their business data, the company said.

The end product will combine Tablus' expertise in locating and protecting intellectual property, sensitive personal information and security-related content with Infoscape, which helps organizations meet government data-retention and archiving mandates and prepare for litigation support.

"Information security has become an information-anagement problem: Today, many organizations struggle to establish exactly what data they have and where it all is – let alone how sensitive it is," Art Coviello, executive vice president at EMC and president of RSA, said in a prepared statement. "The reality of information security is that you cannot secure what you cannot manage, and you cannot manage what you cannot find. This acquisition will expand our ability to help organizations secure their data.”

Products in this arena are focused on thwarting theft of information by insiders. These types of solutions are designed to overcome the typical enterprise's a lack of internal controls for dealing with insider threats, and could have caught Gary Mims, who was convicted of stealing $400 million worth of in proprietary information from DuPont, when he repeatedly accessed a company database.

Since its own acquisition by EMC, RSA has made several similar niche-product acquisitions. For instance, on Feb. 6, 2007, at its own RSA Conference in San Francisco, RSA announced it had purchased Valyd Software, a Hyderabad, India-based developer of data-encryption software.

On April 24, 2006, it bought its way into a leadership position in the market for risk-based authentication solutions by acquiring PassMark for $45 million. And in May 2005, RSA acquired Cyota, a provider of online anti-fraud products, for $145 million.

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