Fortinet announces secure SD-WAN appliances for operational technology environments


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Fortinet – a global company in broad, integrated and automated cybersecurity solutions – have recently announced the FortiGate Rugged 60F and FortiGate Rugged 60F with built-in LTE next-generation firewalls. These are the industry’s first secure SD-WAN appliances certified to perform in operational technology (OT) environments.

Built for non-environmentally controlled sites, the new ruggedised versions of the FortiGate platform enable the easy deployment of Fortinet’s Secure SD-WAN solution in locations never before possible for OT organisations in industries such as utilities and energy, manufacturing, and transportation.

“Changing the way many organisations do business”

John Maddison, EVP of Products and CMO at Fortinet, “The convergence of OT and IT is changing the way many organisations do business and is also opening up new security risks. It is essential that OT organisations implement security-driven networking solutions that deliver secure, reliable connectivity even in remote and harsh environments.

“The FortiGate Rugged 60F platform delivers Secure SD-WAN to enable OT system owners to confidently embrace digital innovation while sustaining safe and continuous operations. This news continues Fortinet’s commitment to making Secure SD-WAN available for all network edges and verticals.”

OT networks require specialised solutions

Fundamental shifts are occurring in the way operational environments generate and collect data. In industries like manufacturing, power and utilities, oil and gas and other critical infrastructure, their distributed locations have traditionally relied on expensive leased lines or MPLS circuits to provide secure, reliable communications. SD-WAN has emerged as a modern solution for OT organisations to realise better user experience, simplified management and lower total cost of ownership, but adopting this technology requires a solution that meets the specific needs of OT environments, including space, power, security and environmental requirements.

Fortinet & SD-WAN

To address the unique concerns of OT organisations, Fortinet is releasing the FortiGate Rugged 60F and FortiGate Rugged 60F with built-in LTE. The FortiGate Rugged 60F platform delivers the following features to support OT environments in safely and securely deploying SD-WAN:

Small footprint – the FortiGate Rugged 60F combines SD-WAN, advanced routing and firewall security in a single form factor, enabling it to be deployed in space-sensitive environments – this has the additional benefit of reducing costs and simplifying operations for network analysts.

Flexible mounting and power – the Rugged 60F is designed specifically for deployment in smaller OT sites that require different mounting and power options than found in traditional IT wiring closets.

Built tough – the Rugged 60F is specifically designed to function in harsh environmental conditions, such as extreme temperatures, electromagnetic interference, high moisture, and extreme or constant vibration.

Built-in LTE connectivity – for remote locations, the Rugged 60F comes with an option for built-in LTE to provide an additional WAN connectivity option as well as easier deployment and operation.

Fortinet performance for OT

Powered by Fortinet’s patented SOC4 SD-WAN ASIC, the FortiGate Rugged 60F platform delivers low-latency protection, including SSL decryption, and higher IPsec VPN scale on top of integrated SD-WAN capabilities that are all managed by Fortinet’s intuitive SD-WAN orchestrator – Fortinet’s solution is also backed by industry validation.

Security-driven Networking for operational technology

Fortinet delivers a Security-driven Networking approach to SD-WAN, converging networking and security into a unified Secure SD-WAN solution with centralised orchestration. Combined with the Fortinet Security Fabric, this can provide customers with one solution that covers the entire converged IT-OT network to close OT security gaps, deliver full visibility and provide simplified management.

The FortiGate product line delivers cybersecurity control and visibility into OT networks, with the recent announcement of a ruggedised version extending these capabilities to allow deployments on oil rigs, electrical substations, assembly lines, maritime cargos, and other harsh environmental conditions. 

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