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12/16/2003
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Check Point Software Buys Zone Labs for $205 Million

The acquisition will help Check Point strengthen its ability to help customers secure internal desktops as well as their network perimeters.

Internet security software maker Check Point Software Technologies Ltd., which is best known for its network firewall and VPN applications, said Tuesday it will acquire Zone Labs in a deal worth $205 million. Check Point will pay $92 million in stock and $113 million in cash.

Zone Labs is a maker of "end point," or personal, firewalls for PCs. They also make an application called Integrity, which helps companies manage the end-point security of their desktops and notebooks.

Analysts say the acquisition will help Check Point strengthen its ability to help its customers secure internal desktops as well as their network perimeter. "Check Point has a strong management interface," says Eric Ogren, a senior analyst at Yankee Group. By integrating the interface with Zone Labs' firewalls, "it will allow customers to more easily manage their end points as well as their network firewalls." While Zone Labs has had success selling its end-point firewalls, it's difficult for the company to continue to compete with the larger antivirus and endpoint firewall vendors such as Symantec and Network Associates, says Pete Lindstrom, research director at Spire Security. Now that Zone Labs' technology is part of Check Point, Lindstrom says, that challenge now disappears.

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