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IBM To Take On XDR With Buy Of Endpoint Security Firm ReaQta

‘With the planned acquisition of ReaQta, IBM aims to further expand its threat detection and response capabilities by providing native EDR capabilities as an option in the QRadar XDR suite,’ writes QRadar Product Manager Chris Meenan.

IBM has agreed to purchase ReaQta to expand in the extended detection and response (XDR) market by automatically identifying and managing threats on the endpoint.

The Armonk, N.Y.-based technology goliath said Amsterdam, Netherlands-based ReaQta’s behavioral-based platform stops known and unknown threats in real-time and can be deployed on premise, in the cloud, or in air gapped environments. ReaQta’s platform blocks abnormal behavior by defining threat behavior tailored to each business unit via deep learning done natively on the endpoint, IBM said.

“Complexity has created a cloak that attackers are operating under, furthering their ability to circumvent defenders,” IBM Security General Manager Mary O’Brien said in a statement. “With our expanded capabilities via QRadar XDR and the planned addition of ReaQta, IBM is helping clients get ahead of attackers with the first XDR solution that reduces vendor lock-in via the use of open standards.”

[Related: IBM Buys Cloud Security Startup Spanugo To Boost Compliance]

IBM’s stock is up $0.07 (0.06 percent) to $126.35 in trading Tuesday morning. Terms of the acquisition weren’t disclosed, and the deal is expected to close later this year. IBM didn’t immediately respond to a request for additional comment.

ReaQta was founded in 2014, employs 42 people, and has raised more than $2.8 million in three rounds of outside funding, according to LinkedIn and Crunchbase. The company most recently closed a Series A round for an undisclosed amount in May. ReaQta was co-founded and had been led since inception by Alberto Pelliccione, who was previously a senior security engineer for Intelligence Gathering Solutions.

“Our mission at ReaQta has been to better equip the defenders, who are tirelessly striving to stay ahead of cyber threats, with advanced technology to quickly identify and block new attacks,” Pelliccione said in a statement. “Joining forces with IBM will enable us to enhance and scale our unique AI capabilities across all types of environments via a proven platform for threat detection and response.”

ReaQta’s platform helps prevent interference from adversaries by leveraging a unique ‘Nano OS’ that monitors that operating systems from the outside, according to IBM. The company will join the IBM Security business unit upon closing, adding expanded native XDR capabilities aimed at helping clients adopt continuous monitoring and rapid response as part of a zero trust approach, IBM said.

Specifically, the ReaQta acquisition will make it possible for IBM to include an option for endpoint detection and response (XDR) in its XDR suite, meaning customers can either take advantage of native IBM capabilities for all core XDR functions or leverage existing investments and third-party tools across the company’s partner ecosystem, according to QRadar Product Manager Chris Meenan.

“With the planned acquisition of ReaQta, IBM aims to further expand its threat detection and response capabilities by providing native EDR capabilities as an option in the QRadar XDR suite,” Meenan wrote in a blog post. “This move is designed to align with IBM’s strategy to deliver security with an open approach that extends across disparate tools, data and hybrid cloud environments.”

IBM launched QRadar XDR Tuesday to showcase the company’s expansion from Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) into Security Operations, Automation and Response (SOAR) as well as network detection and response. QRadar XDR examines the network, risk, artificial intelligence and user behavior analytics in an open ecosystem to fulfill the demands of security teams and offer integrations.

“QRadar XDR meets SOC teams where they are to enhance, simplify and automate threat detection and response,” Meenan wrote. “As organizations modernize their infrastructure and strengthen their defenses against threats, it’s time to take threat detection and response to the next level with a truly open approach.”

Big Blue also introduced XDR Connect Tuesday to provide a unified, seamless user experience for alert triage, investigation and threat hunting, automation root cause analysis and response, Meenan said. XDR Connect provides access to the latest threat intelligence insights data and centralized management of security incidents with pre-defined detection and response rules, according to Meenan.

The proposed ReaQta acquisition comes 17 months after IBM bought cloud security startup Spanugo to fulfill the compliance and protection needs of clients in highly regulated industries. Spanugo’s platform can efficiently and transparently demonstrate cybersecurity compliance in real time when a business is audited, delivering improvements and adaptation to reduce the likelihood of a successful attack.

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