RealTime IT News

New GeoTrust Back in VeriSign Craw

When you buy your competitor, they're supposed to stop being your competitor, right?

Security vendor GeoTrust was acquired by VeriSign earlier this year for $125 million in cash.

But apparently, VeriSign didn't get all of GeoTrust, as the former GeoTrust CEO, Neal Creighton spun out a former GeoTrust subsidiary to create a company that will compete against VeriSign.

The new company is called ChosenSecurity and is funded by some of the same investors that helped fund GeoTrust. It also has a very similar product offering position to what GeoTrust had been providing.

ChosenSecurity has its roots in Germany based TC TrustCenter, which GeoTrust acquired earlier this year prior to the VeriSign acquisition.

Creighton spun out TC TrustCenter into ChosenSecurity when VeriSign acquired GeoTrust.

So it's just GeoTrust all over again but with a different name? Not quite.

ChosenSecurity isn't in the SSL certificate space, which is one of the key reasons VeriSign acquired GeoTrust in the first place.

GeoTrust and VeriSign had been engaged in a long-running boasting contest about who was the leader in the SSL space.

ChosenSecurity is instead focused on Two-Factor Authentication and will compete against VeriSign's Managed PKI service, which is allowed under the terms of the VeriSign/GeoTrust acquisition deal.

"Yes, we compete directly with VeriSign," Steve Pace, senior vice president of worldwide operations at ChosenSecurity, told internetnews.com.

"We are free to compete with VeriSign in the areas where Chosen Security, Inc. provides our solutions. However, we can not comment on the specific details of the VeriSign merger agreement."

VeriSign Security Services Senior Manager, Corporate Communications Monisha Khanna told internetnews.com that VeriSign is not associated in any way with ChosenSecurity.

ChosenSecurity's Pace noted that the technology that his company offers represents a tremendous opportunity to capture a market that is beginning to get a lot of attention and focus.

"We offer the most flexible, cost-effective PKI solution in the world," Pace said. "And we have many successful deployments with marquee name customers around the world."

That's not to say that there aren't barriers to adoption for ChosenSecurity's solutions. Pace admitted that integration of PKI into solution sets is a barrier that his firm is working to overcome.

The plan moving forward is now for ChosenSecurity to expand its reach in North America.

Pace also noted that they plan to announce new partnerships in the coming weeks and that they are on the lookout to acquire companies and technologies as well.