Ping, IBM acquisitions make for a busy time in the single sign-on sector

* Acquisition news from Ping Identity and IBM/Tivoli

Last issue I promised a further look at Microsoft and its (non-) support of standard protocols such as SAML, SPML and XACML. And I will get back to that. But last week's news of a couple of acquisitions by Ping Identity and IBM/Tivoli in the single sign-on space as well as a launch in the user-centric sector are going to use up all the digital ink I've been allocated for this week. But we will return to the standards issues.

Hard on the heels of last Tuesday’s announcement that Ping Identity had acquired the Sxip Access product line from Sxip Technology came news that IBM’s Tivoli division was acquiring Encentuate. Both relate to the SSO niche of identity management and the announcement of both at this time indicates one more step in the accretion process for identity management suites. Oracle has its Oracle Access Manager, Sun promotes OpenSSO and now IBM felt the need to bring in house something it has offered mostly through its partner Passlogix.

The Encentuate product line offers more than simply SSO, of course, but that appears to be the “jewel in the crown” for IBM/Tivoli. It remains to be seen, though, how long it will take to firmly embed the technology in the Tivoli Identity Manager product mix.

I’ve a feeling that Andre Durand and his merry band at Ping will be quicker off the mark to integrate the (mainly) Web SSO technology they acquired from Sxip. It’ll be interesting to see what Ping does about the name, though, as Sxip Technology will still exist and its Sxipper application for Firefox will continue to be available. With a fair stable of Sxip Access customers, such as Salesforce.com, ping will have to be nimble about moving forward while preserving as much of the existing Sxip Access accoutrements as possible. Should be quite the balancing act!

An interesting side note is that Sxip Technology CEO Dick Hardt had to bow out of a panel (“Context and User-centric Identity”) I’m moderating at next month’s European Identity Conference due to the press of business. But who should step up to take his place? Ping’s Durand! Perhaps there are other announcements forthcoming from Dick, Vancouver’s “Mr. Identity 2.0”!

There was other news last week in the user-centric ID space which we’ll get to in the next issue.

Upcoming Events from the calendar at IdM Journal:

* April 7-11: RSA Conference, San Francisco.2nd European Identity Conference, Munich, Germany.Gartner Identity & Access Management Summit, London, U.K.

* April 22-25:

* June 23:

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