IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced it has acquired Encentuate, a privately held company based in Redwood City, California, and a leading provider of identity and access management software focused on enterprise single sign-on and integration of strong authentication technology.
IBM will integrate Encentuate into IBM Software Group's Tivoli division. Financial terms were not disclosed.
IBM also today announced the forming of the IBM Security Software Laboratory in Singapore. Consistent with the company's globally integrated enterprise strategy that draws on local, highly-skilled specialists to service all clients, the new lab will utilize the expertise of Encentuate's Singapore development team to better serve IBM clients in Asia and around the world.
Identity and access management have emerged as a critical issue for businesses, driven in large part by businesses' efforts to comply with the growing number of worldwide regulatory requirements such as Sarbanes-Oxley, HIPAA, Basel II, Japan's Financial Instruments and Exchange Law and the Payment Card Industry's customer identity protection requirements. According to a February 2008 Forrester Research report, the identity and access management opportunity will grow from $2.6 billion in 2006 to more than $12.3 billion in 2014 (1). In this area, enterprise single sign-on software is a business productivity tool that allows users to simplify secure sign-on to a corporate network once and automatically handles subsequent access to various desktop, e-mail, legacy and hosted applications.
Encentuate's strength lies within its industry-leading ability to track and facilitate identity usage while helping to increase user productivity. It can reduce the burden of remembering different passwords, rules and user IDs while helping to improve security by automatically managing user passwords, sign-ons, sign-offs and enforcing security policies. It allows IT administrators to quickly integrate legacy and new applications to leverage the Encentuate single sign-on technology.
Additionally, by centrally tracking and collating log-in attempts, Encentuate provides companies with audit and reporting capabilities that help them document and report on their efforts to meet governance and compliancnnce requirements. Encentuate provides extensive application and shared workstation support for a range of legacy, Web-based and service oriented architecture applications across industries such as manufacturing, healthcare, finance and government.
According to analyst firm IDC, IBM is the leading provider of identity and access management security software based on worldwide revenue (2), and Encentuate is a key addition to the company's portfolio. Encentuate technology will be offered as part of the IBM Tivoli Access Manager suite and IBM expects to integrate Encentuate with its broad set of security management offerings such as IBM Tivoli Identity Manager, IBM Tivoli Federated Identity Manager, IBM Tivoli Compliance Insight Manager and IBM Tivoli Security Operations Manager.
"IBM has made a strategic decision to acquire Encentuate because customers are increasingly seeking a complete identity and access management solution with IBM quality and support," said Al Zollar, general manager, IBM Tivoli software. "Encentuate technology advances our capabilities in enterprise single sign-on by offering customers an easy to use solution, more flexible integration with strong authentication form factors, dynamic session management and compliance-focused auditing and reporting capabilities."
"We are pleased to join IBM and we believe that this acquisition validates the value that our single sign-on solutions bring to the market as the need for secure identity and access management continues to grow," said Zorawar Biri Singh, President and CEO at Encentuate. "Our customers will significantly benefit from IBM's worldwide customer support and continued investment in integrated security software that leverages our technology."
"With this acquisition and the formation of the IBM Security Software Laboratory in Singapore, we will be able to continue to develop our vision and make an even greater contribution to the industry," added Peng T. Ong, Founder and Chairman of Encentuate. "At the same time, Encentuate will help bolster IBM's ability to provide the industry's broadest security and risk management portfolio."
1) Forrester Research: Identity Management Forecast: 2007 to 2014; February 6, 2008; by Andras Cser and Jonathan Penn
2) IDC: Worldwide Identity and Access Management 2007-2011 Forecast and 2006 Vendor Share (Doc #207609), July 2007, by Sally Hudson and John Crotty.