Baltimore Announces $150M Security Acquisition

Baltimore Technologies (Nasdaq: BALT), a United Kingdom-based provider of e-commerce and enterprise security solutions, announced today that it has acquired U.S.-based e-commerce security provider GTE CyberTrust Solutions in a stock deal valued at $150 million (US$).

The deal, which was announced at the opening of the RSA 2000 Security Conference in San Jose, California, will increase Baltimore’s share of the PKI (public key infrastructure) based e-commerce security marketplace and enhance the company’s U.S. marketplace presence.

According to the terms of the acquisition, Baltimore will receive hosting facilities in the U.S. and Japan, the CyberTrust sales and professional services organization along with its blue-chip customer base, and access to embedded Web browser root keys and associated trust business.

“The CyberTrust business will give us world class hosting facilities, extend our blue-chip client base, and enhance our U.S.-based corporate structure with minimal overlap in products and services,” commented Baltimore CEO Fran Rooney.

Baltimore Technologies develops and markets PKI-based security products and services for companies engaged in online business. Its products include cryptographic toolkits, security applications and hardware cryptographic devices.

RSA Secures smartphone-Commerce

In other news, RSA Security (Nasdaq: RSAS) made several e-commerce security-related moves, including an announced working relationship with Ericsson Mobile Communications to develop security solutions for Ericsson smartphones.

RSA and Ericsson will work to integrate their technologies. The first collaborative product delivery is expected to be the Ericsson smartphone R380, featuring authentication for secure corporate access.

In a joint statement, the companies stated that they “expect mobile phones to be used broadly to access the Internet, to function as a trusted form of authentication and provide a secure platform for digitally signing e-commerce transactions.”

“Together, we intend to provide smartphone users with a new generation of convenient and secure solutions for wireless communications and commerce,” commented Scott Schnell, senior vice president of marketing for RSA Security.

Liberalizing Crypto Control

RSA also recently expressed support for the Clinton administration’s easing of export controls for encryption technologies. The new regulations will open access to the international marketplace for companies like RSA by lifting many of the current export restrictions on products that contain data scrambling technologies.

“This groundbreaking policy improvement puts RSA Security on a level playing field globally,” stated Chuck Stuckey, chairman of RSA Security. “The growth of e-business is eliminating borders around the world and these new regulations recognize that U.S. companies need strong security to deliver competitive products and services in this emerging global market.”

RSA Security, Inc. manufactures several products to assist organizations to build secure foundations for e-commerce, including RSA BSAFE encryption and RSA Keon public key management systems and RSA SecurID two-factor authentication.

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