Industry Trends

Innovation Insights - 300 Patents and Counting...

By Bill McGee | April 26, 2016

It’s been said that the definition of technology innovation is creating significant positive change. This month marks a milestone in Fortinet’s efforts to create an entire culture dedicated to this sort of entrepreneurial innovation, with its 300th patent being issued worldwide - and over 250 additional patent applications pending! This is over five times the number of patented cybersecurity inventions of some of Fortinet’s closest competitors.

Why is this important? Because, frankly, in the security market there are far too many “me too” solutions being sold to consumers as “innovative.” And there is a lot of marketing hype without real substance to back it up. When cloud networking was first emerging, for example, it seemed like every security vendor in the market slapped a “cloud enabled” sticker on their product, and promised to solve all the security challenges cloud networking represented. Now, the new hot button is IoT. Salespeople from scores of vendors are lining up outside the doors of CISOs and IT directors with their new IoT security solutions that slice, dice, and make julienne fries.

So how are organizations supposed to sort through the noise and hype in order to select solutions that will actually make a meaningful difference?

One way is to look at a company’s history of actual innovation. Fortinet didn’t just receive its 300th security patent – a record unmatched by any other security vendor. Each of these patents represents a new and useful invention in cybersecurity which reflects Fortinet’s substantive innovation leadership, technology vision, and dedication to helping customers stay ahead of the ever-evolving threat landscape. Fortinet’s patents cover a wide spectrum of vital security-related issues, including security and network virtualization, sandboxing to detect zero-day threats, DDoS prevention, advanced load balancing, policy enforcement, remediation, network management, optimization, advanced content processing, content filtering, and firewall technologies. And we have successfully defended these innovations against vendors looking for technology shortcuts.

And we don’t stop with patents. We consistently subject these innovative security technologies to independent testing and validation, because when you are confident in the efficacy of your solution, you encourage full transparency. More importantly, some of the largest, most well recognized, and sophisticated enterprises worldwide have tested and compared Fortinet’s innovation to the competition and unequivocally chosen Fortinet.

This isn’t just a list of unrelated patents, either. Years ago, Fortinet’s leadership team anticipated the challenges organizations are now facing, and they put our engineer teams to work to begin solving issues like increased performance and processing demands, the proliferation of endpoint and IoT devices, the need to detect increasingly sophisticated threats, and the need to securely move data between distributed and virtualized environments long before these issues became the challenges of today.

But they also understood that the way to address an increasingly complex challenge is not to keep throwing new devices at the problem. The answer to complexity is, in fact, simplicity. So we developed a single management and reporting solution for increased visibility. A central analysis tool that collects data from all our security solutions. We built a unified operating system that can share threat intelligence and provide coordinated responses to threats. We invented purpose-built security ASICs to offload the heavy security processing that off-the-shelf CPUs were never designed to manage. And we drove innovation in the areas of virtualization and cloud security.

And now, all of this comes together in a number of integrated Fortinet security solutions. For example, Fortinet Advanced Threat Protection brings together a variety of market-leading security technologies in order to detect and respond to advanced threats. It was rated by NSS Labs as over 97% effective at breach detection, and 99.6% effective against sophisticated threats determined during independent ICSA testing, earning ICSA’s first ever certification for Advanced Threat Defense.

The FortiGate Internal Segmentation Firewall is another example of how intelligent innovation can be combined to solve emerging threats and challenges. A tightly integrated set of security technologies extends security into the network core, increasingly visibility while effectively limiting the impact a breach can have. It includes 360° visibility into network activity and topologies, interactive infographics and animated threat displays, a single intuitive operating system, centralized analysis, shared threat intelligence, and single pane of glass centralized management.

And now, Fortinet’s Security Fabric allows organization to deploy a fully integrated security architecture utilizing a wide array of leading Fortinet and third-party security tools across their entire distributed and increasingly mobile enterprise networks. This security fabric collects and shares threat intelligence, tightly coordinates responses to threats, provides centralized policy management and orchestration, and delivers highly adaptive threat protection.

It’s like we planned it this way.

Today’s digital economy requires organizations to connect more users, devices, applications, and data than ever before to drive new business value. To successfully compete, organizations need to implement a security strategy that can see and govern this data across their entire distributed network without compromising agility or performance, or putting business critical data and resources at risk. Fortinet innovation is focused on making this a reality.

And we aren’t resting on our laurels. Fortinet continues to invest in differentiated technologies like the FortiGate enterprise firewall platform, purpose-built ASIC technology, the FortiOS security operating system, and Fortinet’s Security Fabric to deliver dynamically scalable and highly adaptive security for global enterprises, providing end-to-end protections against threats from IoT and remote devices, through the infrastructure core, and into the cloud. It’s why we have another 250 patents currently awaiting approval. Because our goal isn’t to just secure the network. It’s to secure the future of digital business.