Intel buys McAfee for $8.5 billion

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Future based on "hardware-enhanced security".

Intel has agreed to buy security software maker McAfee for about $US7.68 billion ($8.54 billion) as it placed security "on par" with energy efficiency and connectivity in its future development strategy.

The chipmaking giant said the deal, if approved, would see McAfee become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Intel, reporting into its software and services group run by Renee James.

"Both boards of directors have unanimously approved the deal, which is expected to close after McAfee shareholder approval, regulatory clearances and other customary conditions specified in the agreement," Intel said in a statement.

Intel was already "offering hardware encryption embedded in its Westmere chips" that McAfee was taking advantage of in its security software.

"We are working together to bring superior solutions to our customers," McAfee said on its website.

More fruits from that partnership were to be introduced to market next year, Intel said.

They included joint exploration of "future product concepts to strengthen security in the cloud", the companies said.

“In the past, energy-efficient performance and connectivity have defined computing requirements," Intel chief executive officer Paul Otellini said.

"Looking forward, security will join those as a third pillar of what people demand from all computing experiences."

McAfee had about 6100 employees.

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