Analysis: RSA Deal Good For Shareholders, Bad For Industry - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
News

Analysis: RSA Deal Good For Shareholders, Bad For Industry

As EMC prepares to swallow RSA, the security industry will be watching with concern.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — They may be dancing in the streets at Certicom Corp. and other competitors of RSA Security, but the security industry can't help but respond with trepidation to EMC Inc.'s $2.1 billion offer to buy RSA.

EMC President Joe Tucci isn't even pretending to continue RSA's independent sales and marketing channels for crypto cards, firewall software and other public-key products. Instead, they'll be "integrated" with EMC's storage products.

The price may have been right for RSA, but where does that leave the company known for its chutzpah since it first commercialized the Rivest-Shamir-Adleman algorithms for public-key cryptography? RSA's annual conference was famous for bringing together the manufacturers of crypto chips, secure token cards and intrusion detection systems. Long before criticism of the National Security Agency was popular, RSA was famous in the mid-1990s for hiring cartoonist Tom Tomorrow to design posters lampooning the spy agency.

The "bad boy" image started to fade when RSA merged with Security Dynamics in 1996. By 2001, the annual conference had become a predictable polyglot. Key RSA executives left for startups like Reactivity Inc.

Ultimately, RSA's role in promoting public-key encryption cannot be duplicated by any other player.

Is security a key element of storage-area networks and storage subsystems? Undoubtedly. Do storage companies know how to sell security products? Saying "the jury is still out" would be an understatement.

RSA's public-key competitors don't need our advice to help with their ambulance-chasing, but they should still be at the forefront in working on common standards and promoting the security industry in an era of deep insecurity and troubling consolidation.

It's doubtful an EMC-owned RSA will be playing much of a role in either dimension.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
Commentary
Enterprise Guide to Edge Computing
Cathleen Gagne, Managing Editor, InformationWeek,  10/15/2019
News
Rethinking IT: Tech Investments that Drive Business Growth
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  10/3/2019
Slideshows
IT Careers: 12 Job Skills in Demand for 2020
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  10/1/2019
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Getting Started With Emerging Technologies
Looking to help your enterprise IT team ease the stress of putting new/emerging technologies such as AI, machine learning and IoT to work for their organizations? There are a few ways to get off on the right foot. In this report we share some expert advice on how to approach some of these seemingly daunting tech challenges.
White Papers
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll