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Juniper acquires access security software

Juniper Networks will pay $122 million in cash for an access security company called Funk Software.

Juniper Networks, a maker of routing and security equipment, said Monday that it plans to pay $122 million in cash for security company Funk Software.

Funk, which is based in Cambridge, Mass., develops software that manages and provides secure access for wireless and remote users. The functionality of the software looks similar to technology that Juniper rival Cisco Systems has already been shipping on its products for more than a year.

Cisco's software is part of a security architecture called Network Admission Control (NAC). NAC enables Cisco switches, routers and other devices to check users' machines to ensure their laptop or handheld device meets policy requirements before they log on to the network.

If the user's devices comply, the person is allowed access to the network. If they don't, the user's connection is funneled to a restricted virtual private LAN (local area network), where the person can make changes, or have changes made automatically, to conform to policy before being redirected back to the main network.

Like the Cisco security agent software, which is a cornerstone of NAC, the Funk software ensures both the user and the device meet an organization's security policies before they are granted access to the network.

The acquisition is expected to close in December 2005.