Cisco is to acquire Securent, a provider of policy management software for enterprises.

Securent's distributed policy platform lets enterprises administer, enforce, and audit access to data, communications, and applications in heterogeneous IT application environments.

The software will enable Cisco customers to protect application data regardless of vendor, platform, or operating system while still allowing access to content that workers need, said Cisco. Establishing and enforcing entitlement at the network level is consistent with Cisco's Services Oriented Network Architecture (SONA), which lets policy decisions be delivered as a network service across applications, platforms and delivery models.

Securent has 57 employees and development operations in Hyderabad, India. Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay approximately $100 million in cash and assumed options.

After the acquisition closes, the Securent team and technology will become part of Cisco's Collaboration Software Group, led by senior vice president Don Proctor.