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Fortinet Expands Security Fabric With New Technology Partner Program, SIEM Integrations

As part of a building integrated security strategy, Fortinet is extending its Security Fabric ecosystem with the launch of a new Fabric-Ready Partner Program for third-party vendor integration.

As part of a building integrated security strategy, Fortinet is extending its Security Fabric ecosystem with the launch of a new Fabric-Ready Partner Program for third-party vendor integration, the company said Monday.

The new Partner Program opens up the Security Fabric ecosystem to validated third-party vendors, with peer-to-peer integration and commitments to ongoing interoperability and go to market. The first batch of partners include a cross-section of endpoint, cloud, SIEM, management and vulnerability vendors, including Brocade, Carbon Black, Centrify, Nozomi Networks, Palerra, Pulse Secure, Qualys, Tufin, UBIqube, VeriSign, WhiteHat Security and Ziften.

For integration beyond the selective Fabric-Ready set of partners, Fortinet also said it is extending its FortiSIEM solution, which it acquired in June as AccelOps and has since rebranded, with support for multivendor security solutions.

[Related: Fortinet Channel Chief: Integrated Security Creates 'New Opportunity' For Solution Providers]

Mark Miller, partner at M&S Technologies, a Dallas-based Fortinet partner, said he is ’excited’ about the launch, saying the new open ecosystem will allow him to better pair the Fortinet offerings with his other vendor lines and create enhanced security solutions for customers.

’It will be a more strategic security sale for me, the partner,’ Miller said.

In particular, Miller said opening the Security Fabric ecosystem to more third-party partners will help his company sell more complex solutions with faster deployment rates, which he said he expects will help boost his professional services business.

’I think there’s a lot of opportunity for us. I think it shows the maturity of the company and the maturity of their product line. We’re pretty excited about it,’ Miller said. ’It seems like a great step forward.’

The launch builds on a strategy at Fortinet, which it calls the Security Fabric, to provide an integrated security architecture and internal segmentation capabilities for customers. With this launch, that integrated architecture is extended to whatever third-party vendors the customer has in its environment, or the partner has in its portfolio, John Maddison, senior vice president of products and solutions, said.

’It provides some guidance for partners for when they are proposing the solution or the partners. The goal is to get customers to think longer term about their security solutions, instead of buying point solutions that don’t talk to each other,’ Maddison said.

That integrated approach is key in today’s security landscape, Fortinet's Maddison said, as an expanding attack surface and more sophisticated attackers mean a collection of point solutions simply don't cut it anymore. While other major security vendors are starting to take a similar platform approach, Maddison said Fortinet is differentiating itself by being scalable, offering full visibility across the network, endpoint and cloud, a broad appliance reach, and now with third-party integration.

’I’m hearing clear and loud from customers that they are tired of having point solutions. They spend a lot of money and it’s not working. They need a different approach,’ Maddison said.

While other big security vendors have adopted a platform approach to security, Maddison said many of them have built a platform through acquisitions, which he said don’t integrate as well as organically developed technology. While Fortinet has acquired some of its technology, including AccelOps most recently, Maddison said the majority of its technology is organically developed.

’It’s very hard for those big vendors. They talk a good platform, but if you have acquired someone, unless you redevelop that code completely it’s hard to make it part of a unified architecture going forward,’ Maddison said. ’That’s why we’ve stayed away from big security acquisitions. It will be interesting to see how far everyone gets with this core central strategy and how fast they can develop this architecture. I have a feeling we're ahead in that respect because we’ve built it organically.’

Maddison said Fortinet will be launching joint field marketing activities with partners to get the word out about the Security Fabric and how they can connect in third-party vendors. He said Fortinet will also work to continue selectively adding Fabric-Ready security vendors that make sense.

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