In a bid to improve the security of its business application software IBM has agreed a take over of DataPower, privately-held provider of products designed help improve security and speed the processing of computer transactions.

Acquiring the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based is designed to provide IBM with technology to help it improve the performance, security and management of so-called Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) business processes built of reusable software components, which operate independently from the applications and computing platforms on which they run.

"With more companies taking a modular approach to running business processes through a Services Oriented Architecture, there's a greater need for technology to deal with the commensurate increases in web services traffic, which can overburden IT systems," said Robert LeBlanc, general manager, WebSphere, IBM Software Group. "DataPower's products address these challenges."

IBM said it plans to introduce a family of SOA appliances based on the acquired DataPower technology.

DataPower's existing portfolio of SOA appliance products are primarily designed to enable integration and help provide security at the web services message level. The firm's currently shipping offerings include the XI50 Integration Device, which streamlines SOA infrastructures; the XA35 XML Accelerator, which offloads XML processing; and the XS40 XML Security Gateway, which helps provide message-level web services security.

DataPower's security features will complement the SOA security management capabilities of IBM's Tivoli software, according to Big Blue.

"XML web services have become the dominant protocol for connecting disparate systems," said Jim Ricotta, CEO, DataPower. "DataPower's specialized technology not only provides connectivity, but also message-level security, routing, integration and acceleration. DataPower products nicely complement IBM's SOA capabilities."

Ricotta will continue to manage DataPower and will undertake additional responsibility within IBM's WebSphere software area.

Under the terms of the agreement DataPower employees will become IBM employees. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

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