First American Financial Corp., Santa Ana, Calif., is buying Residential Information Services, a servicing software company that is one of the final pieces of Prudential Insurance Corporation of America's mortgage operation.

The technology unit has a tattered history. Prudential bought it from ailing Lomas Financial Corp. in late 1994. Three months later, Prudential put its whole sprawling mortgage operation up for sale, to focus on its core businesses.

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