HP Networking and Fortinet, as part of the HP One alliance, have forged a partnership to launch UTM in a switch under the FortiGate One brand. As part of the alliance, certain specified range of HP switches can be loaded with Forti OS, a version of the software used in Fortinet UTM appliances, extending their capabilities to include the functionality of a UTM.
According to the companies, the security functionalities will include firewall, antispyware, antivirus, SSL VPN, web filtering, application control, DLP, and dynamic routing of IPv4 and IPv6 with software that can be centrally managed. The one drawback that hasn't been addressed as yet is the option of WAN optimization.
Vishak Raman, Regional Director -- SAARC & Saudi Arabia,Fortinet, said, "This is a unique proposition for the market as we look to address the threat of internal security that has taken the spotlight in the last few years. While perimeter security is important, the threat of internal security breaches is on the rise, calling for a need to protect data right at the switching level. This also eliminates the need for a separate UTM and routing appliance."
On the question of whether it will cannibalize its present market by eliminating the need for a UTM appliance, Raman said that it is a new market opportunity and that it will bring more customers in the purview of UTM than before. With Ingram Micro as its sole distributor in India, Fortinet believes that the HP partners will help in expanding its market share. "While we are not reselling each other's products, the bundling of the two gives the partners of either HP or Fortinet an opportunity to expand their horizons," he added.
While the schemes for the partners are still not announced, Fortinet said that any HP partner can sell the proposition without signing up with Fortinet, thus hoping to piggyback on the large HP channel to make inroads in the Indian market.
Since the channel concern is mainly in the direction of services post installation and the training and certifications needed to handle the combined offering, HP clarified that the back end training of HP engineers will enable them to handle level 1 and level 2 cases. The companies clarified that the lifetime warranty for the hardware will continue to stand, but the UTM was a subscription based model that would be dealt with by Ingram Micro at the licensing and renewal level.Presently there are 20 partners that are common to HP and Fortinet and the firms plan to expand the partner count soon to bring in more players.