IBM’s new security systems unit swells with latest purchase

Big Blue acquires Q1 Labs, a provider of security intelligence software

IBM Corp. continues to strengthen its new Security Systems division with the acquisition of Q1 Labs, a provider of security intelligence software. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The move seeks to accelerate IBM's efforts to help clients more intelligently secure their enterprises by applying analytics to correlate information from key security domains and creating security dashboards for their organizations, according to an Oct. 4 IBM announcement.

Q1 Labs' advanced analytics and correlation capabilities can automatically detect and flag actions across an enterprise that deviate from prescribed policies and typical behavior to help prevent breaches, such as an employee accessing unauthorized information.

Q1 Labs has more than 1,800 clients globally, including health care providers, energy firms, retail organizations, utility companies, financial institutions, government agencies, educational institutions, and wireless service providers.

Following the close of the acquisition, the Waltham, Mass., company will join the newly formed IBM Security Systems division, one of the world's most comprehensive security portfolios.

Q1 Labs will join the more than 10 strategic security acquisitions IBM has made in the past decade and the more than 25 analytics-related purchases, including the recently announced acquisition of security analytics software firm, i2.

The new division will be led by Brendan Hannigan, CEO of Q1 Labs, after the deal closes, the announcement said.

The new division will target a $94 billion opportunity in security software and services, which has a nearly 12 percent compound annual growth rate, according to IBM estimates. Q1 Labs' employees are also located in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada, and will become part of the IBM Software Group.

The acquisition is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2011 subject to regulatory review and customary closing conditions.

IBM Corp., of Armonk, N.Y., ranks No. 21 on Washington Technology’s 2011 Top 100 list of the largest federal government contractors.

About the Author

David Hubler is the former print managing editor for GCN and senior editor for Washington Technology. He is freelance writer living in Annandale, Va.

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