It's been a busy week in the identity and access management (IDAM) space.
Earlier this week, IBM announced its acquisition of Lighthouse Security Group, with an eye towards building out its identity management business. In the deal, IBM got a cloud-based platform that includes a suite of functionality based on IBM's Security Identity and Access Management capabilities, including user provisioning, identity life cycle governance, and single sign-on.
But that was not the only acquisition announced this week dealing with identity and access management in the cloud. Kaseya also announced its purchase of Scorpion Software this week, with the goal of delivering Scorpion's AuthAnvil product through the Kaseya cloud.
"I think it's clear there's a lot more interest these days in delivering identity management as a service because it’s a lot less complex," says Garrett Bekker, senior analyst with 451 Research. "You can hand off a lot of the complexity to the service provider and you don’t have to deal with it."
The exact financial details of both the IBM deal for Lighthouse Security Group and Kaseya's acquisition of Scorpion Software were not disclosed.
According to Bekker, the identity management as a service (IDaaS) space is nascent but growing.
"I think these acquisitions to some extent indicate there's more interest in … managing identity through the cloud," he says. "So I think or we think there's going to be more M&A [merger and acquisition] activity around identity and I think it's fair to say a good portion of that will involve companies who have some way of delivering identity and access management services through a cloud-based model."
Jim Reavis, CEO of the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), says IAM in the cloud has tremendous market potential as cloud consumers look to federate corporate identity stores with hundreds and even thousands of the cloud services they use. This reality increases the need for strong authentication and identity-aware network security services, he adds.
Beyond IBM's purchase of Lighthouse Security Group and Kaseya snapping up Scorpion Software, the IAM space has seen other significant moves of late as well: Technology investment firm Thoma Bravo agreed to invest in SailPoint, which specializes in identity and access management both in the cloud and on-premises. IBM last month also acquired Italy-based CrossIdeas with the stated goal of delivering next-generation identity and access governance capabilities to combat access risks and segregation of duty violations.
"The addition of CrossIdeas extends IBM’s market share leading portfolio of identity and access management capabilities," says Brendan Hannigan, General Manager of IBM Security Systems, in a prepared statement. "IBM can now provide enterprises with enhanced governance capabilities and transparency into risk from the factory floor to the board room, giving leaders the insight they need to protect their brand and customers."