IBM acquiring i2 for criminal mastermind software

IBM will use i2's Analyst's Notebook and other products in its own criminal data analysis systems

Expanding its portfolio of analytic software for state and local governments, IBM is in the process of acquiring security analytics software provider i2, the companies announced Wednesday. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Law enforcement agencies and corporate security departments use i2's software to pinpoint malfeasant activity within their logs of operational data. The company's Analyst's Notebook digital forensic software can display a visual diagram of people, places, or other entities, showing how different parties are linked.

I2 has more than 4,500 customers across 150 countries. The company said that 12 of the top 20 retail banks use its software. The Boston Police Department and the Criminal Justice System in Orange County, California, share criminal data through i2's Coplink platform. In a $US9.6 million contract, the U.S. Army procured an enterprise license to use Analyst's Notebook in its troubled Distributed Common Ground Systems -- Army (DCGS-A) intelligence sharing system. Defense contractor Northrop Grumman folded i2's Coplink into a system it is providing to the Navy to track criminal information from multiple sources.

IBM plans to fuse i2's products with its own data collection, analysis and warehousing software. It will then offer packages based on this combinations to organizations looking to spot suspicious behavior within vast collections of data.

I2, which currently has 350 employees, is based in Cambridge, England, and has U.S. headquarters in McLean, Virginia. IBM will fold i2 into its software group. The deal is expected to close by the end of 2011.

IBM has been focusing more of its efforts on providing state and local government markets with analytics software and services, an effort it touts under the "Smarter Cities" marketing brand. The company is running a pilot project with Portland, Oregon, to build a system to make usage predictions of municipal resources based off of operational data.

I2 is not related to software supply chain management software provider i2 Technologies, which was acquired by JDA Software group in 2010.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

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