IBM to acquire Web application security vendor Watchfire

IBM announced plans to acquire Watchfire, creator of the AppScan application security products.

IBM announced plans Wednesday to acquire privately owned Watchfire for an undisclosed amount.

Watchfire sells the AppScan application security products. Recently the Waltham, Mass.-based company released AppScan Enterprise 5, a vulnerability scanning and reporting tool aimed at finding application security flaws early in the development life cycle.

The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter. Watchfire's operations will become part of IBM's Rational software brand, which lets users conduct performance tests while developing software.

In a statement, IBM said Watchfire's expertise in Web application security would help customers reduce security risks and ensure compliance with industry and government regulations early in the software development process. As a result, customers will now be able to define, test and track the compliance of their applications with security, legal and corporate requirements.

Watchfire technology will also complement existing IBM Tivoli identity, access and compliance management software offerings and ISS by extending security and compliance testing as an integrated element of the application development lifecycle.

"Watchfire is a recognized industry leader in the security and compliance market that will further strengthen our ability to help customers mitigate risk by integrating security, quality testing and compliance testing requirements early in the software development process -- before vulnerabilities are exposed," said Dr. Danny Sabbah, general manager of IBM Rational software.

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