Almost a year since it secured its first round of venture capital funding, the data security company nCipher Inc. said it has gotten a second round from investors, including Security Dynamics Technologies Inc. and Hambros Advanced Technology Trust.

nCipher develops cryptographic accelerators that speed the highly complex calculations of data encryption algorithms in on-line commerce. Many experts are hoping that acceleration technology will make Internet transactions easier and more palatable for a mass consumer audience.

"nCipher has addressed the need to speed crypto processing with our nFast line of accelerators," said Alex van Someren, chief executive officer, who co-founded the company in 1996 with his brother Nicko, the chief technology officer.

"This latest investment ($2.35 million on top of the earlier $1.65 million) will help us keep our lead in developing products that speed on- line commerce," the CEO said.

The company's approach-processing the crypto keys on a dedicated piece of equipment rather than in server computers-is "an excellent solution" and avoids overloading of merchant servers, said James Bidzos, president of RSA Data Security Inc., a subsidiary of Security Dynamics.

Celtic House Investment Partners of Britain and Newbridge Networks of Canada are also investors in nCipher.

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