Sophos to buy unified threat management specialist

Purchase of Astaro will increase breadth of security vendor's offerings

Security vendor Sophos plans to buy Astaro, a maker of network security software.

The deal, announced on Friday, gives Sophos an array of new products for securing corporate networks from online attacks. Sophos is best known for its antivirus software.

Founded in 2000, Astaro makes the Astaro Security Gateway appliances that work as all-in-one security tools, combining a firewall, virtual private network, and web and email security.

The company, which has 220 employees, had sales of US$56 million in 2010. The terms of the deal, which is expected to close in mid-June, were not disclosed.

A statement from Sophos Australia quotes Sophos Asia-Pacific managing director Rob Forsyth as saying: "The combination of Astaro's comprehensive portfolio of network security solutions alongside our endpoint, mobile, and email and web threat and data protection capabilities will enable us to continue to deliver on our vision of providing complete security without complexity wherever the user and company data resides."

The statement also claims Astaro is the fourth-largest vendor of unified threat management appliances in the world.

Following the acquisition, Sophos plans to sell an integrated "endpoint and network security solution that can apply consistent security, web, and application policy controls regardless of whether a user is in the corporate network or roaming off the network," the company said in a statement.

- Additional reporting by David Watson

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