Fortinet Ups 10G Ethernet Security Game

Mike Vizard

With more organizations making the transition to 10G Ethernet, most of them instantly realize that their existing firewall platforms are not going to be able to keep up with that kind of network traffic.

As a result, many IT organizations are refreshing their security appliances as they upgrade their networks, which is touching off a flurry of new offerings from security vendors.

The latest security offering capable of keeping pace with 10G Ethernet networks comes from Fortinet, which today upgraded the operating system that drives the company’s next-generation firewall platform.

FortiOS5, running on the Fortigate firewall, gives IT organizations more granular control over what security features are deployed on each firewall instance, while adding news tools to deal with advanced persistent threats (APTs). In addition, the upgraded Fortigate platform includes analytics tools that put any given threat into historical context based on the application, user or device affected.

According to John Maddison, vice president of marketing for Fortinet, the thing that distinguishes the Fortinet security platform is that it leverages custom ASIC processors in a way that allows IT organizations to better handle the increased volume of threats that they will inevitably have to cope with once they increase network bandwidth. After all, not only will there be more traffic, there will also be a corresponding increase in the volume of malware on the network.

The upside of moving to 10G Ethernet, says Maddison, is that platforms such as Fortigate allow organizations to consolidate many of their existing security appliances, which contributes significantly to lowering the total cost of security management. Regardless of where a Fortigate platform is deployed in the data center, at the network perimeter or in the branch office, Maddison says they all share a common management framework.

Obviously, there is no shortage of options for 10G Ethernet security. Maddison says what will ultimately differentiate one security vendor from another will come down to the depth of the security intelligence that a vendor can arm customers with.

After all, it’s not just about how much time and effort the IT organization needs to spend managing those security devices, but what potential security problems never became an issue in the first place.



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