IBM is showing off a “patent-pending innovation” that can reassure big companies of the security of data as it moves from one cloud to another. It’s an interesting move. Big Blue could be trying to achieve at least two strategic feats — promoting its cloud service and distracting from a federal inquiry.

In revealing the technology, IBM is suggesting that it’s possible to securely transport data among clouds while also distracting people from that little Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into the way IBM reports cloud computing revenue.

IBM’s software toolkit, named InterCloud Storage, includes a drag-and-drop interface — so customers can check off the easy-to-use box — and sets IBM’s SoftLayer public cloud as “the default storage provider.” That’s only natural, because IBM has to net more deployments on its cloud and because it has such a powerful competitor to contend with in Amazon Web Services.

But IBM also is trying to score points by offering technology that enables companies to store or back up their data on “the cloud(s) of their choice.”

All of this messaging leads one to think IBM’s cloud strategy is complicated, multipronged, and possibly still evolving.

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