Cisco (CSCO) appears to have two main goals with the Sourcefire (FIRE) acquisition: 1) To grow...


Cisco (CSCO) appears to have two main goals with the Sourcefire (FIRE) acquisition: 1) To grow its exposure to the intrusion prevention system (IPS) space, which is growing rapidly as reports of major hacking incidents put governments and enterprises on edge. Sourcefire, the IPS market's leader, has been expected to grow 25% in 2013. Cisco's security sales fell 4% Y/Y last quarter. 2) To develop end-to-end security platforms that combine traditional firewall tools with more software-centric offerings providing application/service-level security and a deeper understanding of user activity. Palo Alto Networks (PANW - next-gen firewall leader) and Fortinet (FTNT - UTM hardware leader) are each addressing this trend in their own ways. (PR) (John Chambers' security "blank check")

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