IBM, the world's No. 2 computer services company, has created a security services division to enable enterprises to combat cyber-threats, hackers and penetrations.

The move comes as the Armonk, N.Y.-based company said its global network is now monitoring as many as 12 billion security events daily.

This is a new focus for us, Marisa Viveros, IBM VP for Security Services, told IBTimes. Companies have to be more alert than before.

The new emphasis came after IBM acquired security expert Q1 Labs of Waltham, Mass., last month for an undisclosed amount. Given comparable buys for players such as RSA Security, bought by EMC for $2.1 billion and ARCSight, bought by Hewlett-Packard for $1.5 billion, IBM probably did not pay much less.

Adding Q1 Labs, though, adds to several other purchases by IBM in recent years of other software vendors including Canadian giant Cognos in business analytics and Chicago-based SPSS, a pioneer in statistical analysis.

Melding their capabilities, along with other IBM divisions such as Tivoli and IBM research divisions, is intended to meet contemporary challenges, Viveros told IBTimes.

The client needs to get ahead of threats, Viveros said. Besides network penetrations, enterprises must worry about everyday events, such as an employee's loss of a corporate laptop or download of a company PDF file onto a private smartphone.

Indeed, IBM officials said, one of today's biggest potential threats comes from the cloud, places such as Apple's AppStore, which now features more than 500,000 applications.

Merely downloading one of them into an iPhone potentially opens the user to being hacked, tracked or defrauded, especially because confidential data such as a credit card numbers are provided.

The new IBM services are intended to provide a sort of electronic dashboard for enterprises that detail threats. An automated intelligence correlation engine that draws together sequences of activity that need to be checked along and other services.

IBM shares Friday traded around $186.27, down $1.03. They have gained 27 percent in 2011.

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