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IBM Rolls Out Compliance Software

IBM on Monday introduced new enterprise software products based on last month's acquisition of compliance and management specialist BigFix, Inc.

The BigFix Unified Management Software Platform offers modules that identify intelligent devices on a network—from PCs and laptops to point-of-sale and virtualized devices—and flags those that are not in compliance with the end-user company's IT policies concerning areas such as privacy and security.

The tools allow IT and compliance managers to view security configurations on all end-point devices and enforce changes in real time if necessary.

"As organizations become increasingly complex, virtualized and distributed, it's critical for them to take proactive steps to secure and manage their IT environment in a consolidated and automated way," said Amrit Williams, CTO of BigFix technology at IBM, in a statement.

"With BigFix's new virtualization and interface breakthroughs, IT staff can better manage and secure their IT environments," said Williams.

The newest edition of the BigFix platform offers more than 200 enhancements over previous versions, in areas like virtualization management and role-based interfaces. Gartner predicts worldwide sales of security software will top $16.5 billion in 2010, up 11.3% from last year as enterprises look to counter cyberattacks that are increasing in frequency and sophistication.

IBM acquired BigFix in July. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. BigFix, of Emeryville, Calif., was founded in 1997. Its list of about 700 customers includes Kronos, Western Federal Credit Union, Tempurpedic, and SunTrust Banks.

BigFix is the latest in a string of acquisitions by IBM that are meant to enhance the company's portfolio of management, middleware, and analytics software—which IBM has identified as key growth areas.

Earlier this year, IBM agreed to buy out Coremetrics, a privately held developer of business analytics software, for an undisclosed amount. IBM's software group has now acquired roughly 60 companies under the watch of Sam Palmisano, who became CEO in 2003.