Security Experts:

IBM to Acquire SIEM Vendor Q1 Labs, Forms New Security Systems Division

IBM today announced that it would acquire privately held Q1 Labs, a Waltham, Massachusetts-based provider of security intelligence software.

Q1 Labs will join a newly-formed IBM Security Systems division, expected to be led by Brendan Hannigan, CEO of Q1 Labs.

IBM Acquires Q1 LabsQ1 Labs LogoQ1 Labs adds to the more than 10 other security acquisitions IBM has made in the last decade and the more than 25 analytics-related acquisitions, including recently acquired security analytics software firm, i2.

Q1 Labs' solutions help 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.

IBM's new Security Systems division integrates IBM's Tivoli, Rational and Information Management security software, appliances, lab offerings and services. IBM plans to apply Q1 Labs' analytics to beef up its security intelligence capabilities across its security products and services such as identity and access management, database security, application security, enterprise risk management, intrusion prevention, endpoint management and network security.

Q1 Labs technology will create a common security platform for IBM's software, hardware, services and research offerings, IBM said in a statement.

In addition to announcing the acquisition, IBM Managed Security Services today launched a cloud-based offering of Q1 Labs' security information and event management solution.

Many people don’t realize how big IBM is in the security space. Big Blue operates nine security operations centers, nine IBM Research centers, 11 software security development labs and three Institutes for Advanced Security. Just last week it launched the Institute for Advanced Security in Asia Pacific, in order to combat growing security threats in the region.  The company employs thousands of security experts globally and monitors 12 billion security events per day in more than 130 countries. IBM has been in the security business for nearly 50 years and holds 3,000 security patents.

Financial terms of the Q1Labs deal were not disclosed.

Interestingly and Ironically, today also marks the debut of Q1Labs’ CSO Chris Poulin’s bi-weekly column with SecurityWeek. His first column, “Security Intelligence: A Spy Story”, was published shortly before the acquisition announcement this morning.


The news of the acquisition comes on the same day that McAfee announced plans to acquire NitroSecurity, another leading SIEM solutions vendor. These two acquisitions, combined with HP’s $1.5 billion acquisition of ArcSight just over a year ago, make it pretty clear that despite some recent arguments, SIEM isn’t dead.


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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.