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Trend Micro To Buy Encryption Firm Mobile Armor

Acquisition of hardware and software endpoint encryption company is latest in a busy year of purchases involving major security vendors.

Trend Micro on Monday announced its plans to acquire Mobile Armor, which sells data encryption software for hardware and operating systems. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"This acquisition will expand our endpoint security market reach and will provide our customers with proven technology for encrypting data on laptops, tablet PCs, and smartphones," said Eva Chen, Trend Micro CEO, in a statement.

"For customers, we see Mobile Armor complementing Trend Micro's data protection strategy and contributing to Trend Micro's mobile and cloud security initiatives," said Michael Menegay, CEO of Mobile Armor, in a statement.

According to IDC, McAfee is the world's third-largest content and threat management vendor and controlled 9.3% of the market in 2009. That puts it behind Symantec (25.8%) and McAfee (12.2%) but ahead of Check Point Software Technologies (6.9%), Microsoft (4.6%), Kaspersky Lab (3.6%), Websense (2.9%), and Sophos (2.4%).

Trend Micro's purchase of Mobile Armor continues what's been a non-stop year of acquisitions involving every major security vendor. In August, for example, McAfee was acquired by Intel.

Meanwhile in April, Trend Micro's largest rival, Symantec, spent a total of $370 million in cash to purchase data encryption vendors PGP and GuardianEdge.

As that implies, endpoint data encryption technology is in demand. Based on figures from IDC, the endpoint encryption market will grow by 14% per year through 2014. Some of that uptake is being driven by continuing CIO fears over employees who use their own mobile devices to connect to the corporate network and store sensitive data.

But regulations are also leading organizations to take better care of mobile data. "State and national governments are enacting more stringent regulations such as the U.S. HITECH Act, the U.K. Data Protection Act, and the German Federal Data Protection Act," said Trend Micro. "Together with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), such regulations are driving the need to encrypt sensitive information and protect privacy."

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