Business & Technology

The World's #1 Network Firewall Also Delivers Powerful Networking Solutions

By Nirav Shah | June 14, 2022

Fortinet has been the driving force in the evolution of cybersecurity for over 20 years. Central to that is FortiGate, the industry's most-deployed, patented, and validated firewall. With over 8.4 million cumulative units shipped, representing over one-third of all firewall shipments, and performance numbers that average 15x better than competitive offerings, it's no secret that FortiGate is the #1 firewall in the world.

Less well-known is that FortiGate also serves as a central part of the only true converged networking and security platform available today.

FortiGate delivers one of the top Secure SD-WAN solutions on the market

In addition to the suite of market-leading security solutions built into FortiGate, it also delivers one of the market's top-rated Secure SD-WAN solutions at no extra cost. Fortinet Secure SD-WAN is the only solution to ensure optimal user experience with maximum threat protection at any scale. That's due to the FortiGate patented security processing unit (SPU) architecture, which extends across the entire product line. It ensures the highest price-performance in the industry, enabling superior security and inspection services for advanced traffic management.

And because it was built using the same operating system, FortiOS, as Fortinet's portfolio of market-leading security solutions, IT teams can seamlessly connect and route branch networks while simultaneously applying a full stack of integrated security, eliminating the expensive and time-consuming need to add overlay security. The FortiOS operating system spans all WAN and security functions, simplifying management, increasing visibility, and ensuring consistent policy deployment and enforcement. Its unique ability to orchestrate consistent networking and security policies enables IT teams to implement end-to-end automation that's easy to set up and manage, combined with deep analytics and self-healing WAN links to optimize operational efficiency.

These advantages allow Fortinet Secure SD-WAN to deliver on three critical issues every IT team must address: 1) delivering application SLAs no matter where an application resides, 2) delivering WAN resiliency to ensure continuous operations and business uptime, and 3) delivering end-to-end visibility, orchestration, and customized reporting to ensure efficient operations.

FortiGate can also provide centralized configuration and management for wireless WAN using FortiExtender LTE/5G cellular gateways. Whether you need to add cellular WAN links as backup, enable out-of-band management (OOB), or leverage LTE/5G for primary edge connectivity at a branch location, FortiGate makes it easy to add wireless WAN as another simple and secure link.

FortiGate includes a powerful LAN edge controller

In addition to its advanced WAN capabilities, FortiGate includes a fully functional set of LAN controls. For example, FortiGate can act as the wireless controller for FortiAP Wi-Fi access points, with all the features you'd expect from a wireless controller. Onboard maps allow for easy correlation of events to locations within the site, with detailed spectrum analysis for in-depth RF analysis when needed. Fortinet's Ethernet switches (FortiSwitch) can also be controlled by the FortiGate, with onboard switch control down to the port and configuration of MC-LAG (multi-chassis link aggregation group) topologies. And following through on our vision of Security-Driven Networking, all firewall security features integrate natively with the LAN layer, allowing you to set consistent security policies to the LAN using the same screen you use to manage firewall ports.

FortiGate enables the industry's only universal ZTNA enforcement

FortiGate is the only firewall product to natively integrate zero- trust network access (ZTNA) policy enforcement points. Because it can be deployed anywhere in the network (on-premises and in the cloud), FortiGate can establish universal application access enforcement protected by encrypted tunnels for a consistent user experience, which is now critical for securing today's hybrid workforce. FortiOS can automatically trigger user verification and device risk assessment for each application session, providing the foundation for building a Zero Trust Edge strategy that enables a hybrid workforce to connect to applications while maintaining consistent security wherever users and applications reside.

Converging NOC & SOC starts with FortiGate

One of the biggest challenges facing NOC and SOC systems is addressing the convergence of networking and security. The Fortinet Security Fabric is the first platform designed specifically to enable this convergence. And its unique design, where all systems are built on the same FortiOS operating system with FortiGate as the foundation, enables centralized management, removing the traditional complexity of managing each architecture individually, especially at scale across a dispersed network.

Fortinet’s single pane of glass approach with FortiManager allows both NOC and SOC teams to manage the entire Fortinet estate through a single console. This enables security and network policy integration, ensures consistent security policy distribution and enforcement, and reduces risks due to misconfigurations. In addition, its advanced zero-touch provisioning capabilities simplify solution distribution to remote locations, so organizations can quickly build out a unified security architecture across their distributed ecosystem. FortiOS includes a wide range of open APIs and common standards to enable NOC and SOC teams to automate workflows and increase operational efficiency through FortiManager with solutions from Fortinet's open ecosystem tech alliance partners.

FortiGate can also be augmented with advanced services from FortiGuard Labs, such as IoC (Indicators of Compromise)-as-a-Service and FortiGuard security ratings. These and other services provide increased visibility into security posture, deeper insight into network traffic anomalies, and enhance the ability of NOC and SOC teams to gather and act on threat intelligence.

The Fortinet Difference

The power behind FortiGate starts with FortiOS everywhere, the common operating system for all FortiGate advanced network and security functions spanning on-premises and cloud environments. And because every solution running on the FortiGate platform runs on FortiOS, they are not simply integrated. They are the same product.

This common codebase enables true convergence across all solutions and form factors (appliance, virtual machine, container, and cloud). And Fortinet's unique ASIC acceleration, designed for both physical and virtual devices, is the only custom-built performance-enhancement technology in the industry, delivering an average of 15x more performance than competitively priced solutions. This technology convergence also enables broad automation across the distributed network, enabling advanced services, powered by Fortinet's patented AI and ML technology from FortiGuard Labs, to coordinate the detection and prevention of threats across on-premises and multi-cloud deployments at scale.

While it's a significant achievement to be recognized as the world's most-shipped network firewall, that's just the beginning. We invite you to explore the edge networking capabilities in your FortiGate that move it beyond simply a core security platform to one that can be deployed everywhere your network touches. Its unique capabilities provide secure networking, zero-trust access, cloud security, and integrated network and security operations to ensure consistent visibility and control, enabling your organization to confidently amplify your digital acceleration efforts.

Learn more about converging modern networking technologies with AI-powered security across all edges with secure networking solutions from Fortinet.