AP, LTW

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM) is adding to its network security business with the acquisition of a privately held company called

SunTrust Bank is one of the customers for BigFix, which has more than 700 in all across a variety of sectors, including retail, healthcare and government.

According to IBM, SunTrust uses BigFix across its enterprise network of more than 50,000 PCs, servers and mobile devices for real-time monitoring. Through BigFix, Suntrust has cut patch updates to three days from three weeks.

"BigFix automates some of the most time-intensive IT tasks across the most complex global networks, helping save organizations significant amounts of time, labor, and expense," said Al Zollar, general manager of IBM Tivoli software. "BigFix’s real-time visibility and control for globally distributed computing devices will complement IBM’s existing smarter data center offerings and strengthen our ability to build security into the fabric of the enterprise."

IBM did not say how much it is paying for the company.

BigFix, based in Emeryville, Calif., provides software that monitors company computers to make sure they comply with corporate security policy. It has about 200 employees.

IBM expects to close the acquisition in the third quarter.

"Organizations require tighter control of computing devices and the entire IT infrastructure including applications, storage, servers and networks," said Dave Robbins, chief executive officer and chairman of the board at BigFix. "BigFix is excited about becoming part of the IBM team to deliver greater visibility and control to the computing infrastructure, backed by world-class sales, services, support and alliances organizations."

The company launched in 1997.

BigFix will be incorporated into IBM’s Software Group.

For the acquisition announcement,

IBM employs some 10,000 people at its campus in RTP.

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