EMC Buys RSA: Customers Upbeat, For Now

By CIOinsight  |  Posted 06-30-2006

If its $2.1 billion bid for RSA Security goes through, EMC officially can't be called a "data storage" vendor anymore. The Hopkinton, Mass., company adds RSA as part of steadily rounding out its offerings, staking out a broad area of information management and security infrastructure.

The companies, which announced the deal late on Thursday afternoon, expect the acquisition to be completed late in the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter of 2006.

EMC has been best known for its massive storage systems. With RSA, which posted $310 million in revenue for 2005, the company acquires a line of encryption and authentication products, including SecurID, hardware devices that provide a second factor in proving the identity of someone logging in to a network remotely.

One RSA customer believes the EMC acquisition can only benefit the smaller company.

"I think it is a good strategic move for RSA," says Victor Leung, director of Web development for Man Financial, a futures and options brokerage based in London. "I am glad RSA is now part of part of a bigger company, and I hope RSA would have access to more resource to focus on what they do best—security."

What about the possibility EMC will divert RSA from a singular focus on security? Leung doesn't believe that will happen, and that any future integration between RSA and EMC products will be a good thing.

"I can't see why the I.T. managers would complain if EMC tells them their products are 100% compatible with the RSA infrastructure that is already in place," he says.

Dave Miller, chief information security officer of Covisint, a Detroit-based provider of data integration services and a division of software provider Compuware, is another RSA customer. He doesn't expect any immediate changes resulting from the deal, but is hopeful that the EMC-RSA tie-up will result in products that closely couple data and security.

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