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Fortinet Adds New Partner Program

Fortinet's all-in-one approach to security is getting the attention of managed security service providers (MSSPs) and prompting the vendor to develop a program for those partners.

Santa Clara, Calif.-based Fortinet develops network-based security solutions that bundle antivirus, firewall and intrusion-detection functionality in a single device. Those solutions are based on an application-specific integrated chip (ASIC), which performs better than a general-purpose CPU because it's hard-wired for a specific job and doesn't have to fetch and interpret stored instructions.

Guarded Networks, an MSSP that has already signed on with Fortinet, is bolstering its BorderShield managed security service platform by integrating it with Fortinet's FortiGate device. Guarded Networks is aiming the solution at the financial services, health-care and SMB markets, said Eric Lambert, executive vice president and CFO of Guarded Networks, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The MSSP's BorderShield services consist of information security consulting, which includes assessment of policies and procedures, reporting, security solution architecture and deployment, managed security and training.

"This combined solution is a real value-add for our VARs," Lambert said. "They can sell it to their customers, giving them a unique all-in-one security solution, or they can turn [off all services except antivirus] and later add other capabilities. In return, they get a revenue stream for the life of the contract."

Rick Kagan, vice president of marketing at Fortinet, is quick to point out the appeal of FortiGate to small- and midsize-business customers.

"[SMBs] have the same security needs as larger organizations, but they don't have the manpower to manage server devices and solutions, and they can't afford several systems," Kagan said. "We can offer a cost-effective alternative with everything they need in one easy-to-install and easy-to-manage box."

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