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Contributing Writer

Why is Cisco So Tight-Lipped About Acquiring Rohati?

Jan 07, 20102 mins
Cisco SystemsData and Information Security

What happened to Securent? Where does Rohati fit?

Earlier this week, Network World’s Ellen Messmer and other reported that Cisco will acquire Entitlement Management appliance vendor Rohati. It appears that Cisco confirmed this news but hasn’t made any other statements or put out a press release to confirm this. Normally, you can’t get Cisco to tone down its hyperbole so why is Cisco so silent in this case? Beats me. From my perspective, I’d like to know:1. Why is Cisco buying Rohati when it acquired Securent, a company also focused on Entitlement Management, back in November 2007 for roughly $100 million?2. How will Rohati and Securent work together if at all? Where does each company fit? Where does each company report?3. Does the acquisition of Rohati mean that Cisco will push XACML? Does it mean that Cisco will work with other ISVs to bring entitlement management to the network? Will it create professional services to do this?4. Finally, what were the terms of this deal?It’s also curious that Cisco always seems to buy startups founded by ex-Cisco folks but that’s another can of worms.I worked a lot with Rohati and am a firm believer in the technology and the strategy. In my humble opinion, Cisco picked up a winner and I always thought that Rohati would be scooped up. That said, I figured on HP, Juniper Networks or even IBM, not Cisco.I hope Cisco builds upon the Rohati technology and uses its muscle to bring Entitlement Management to the network pushing XACML in the process. The more web applications and Cloud Services created, the more this makes sense. If Cisco takes Rohati and executes, I think it can make these things happen. If Rohati gets caught up in the Cisco management political vortex however, we may not hear much about Rohati in the future either.

Contributing Writer

Jon Oltsik is a distinguished analyst, fellow, and the founder of the ESG’s cybersecurity service. With over 35 years of technology industry experience, Jon is widely recognized as an expert in all aspects of cybersecurity and is often called upon to help customers understand a CISO's perspective and strategies. Jon focuses on areas such as cyber-risk management, security operations, and all things related to CISOs.

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