Retail chains are among the enterprise IT customers who buy big – when you have dozens of stores, you buy in volume.
That’s why IT security systems maker Fortinet Inc. chose this week’s U.S. Federation of Retailer’s conference to unveil three new unified threat management appliances and three network security switches.
The switches all come with Power-Over-Ethernet (PoE) ports for connecting to devices like video cameras, VoIP phones or point of sale units, while two of the new UTM applinces use the second generation of Fortinet’s system on a chip integrated circuit ASICs.
“When you’re putting these in a lot of places a customer may be buying 2,000 of these devices, and you’ve got to get to a certain price/performance point,” said John Maddison, Fortinet’s vice-president of marketing.
“Using system on a chip technology you can combine what would normally be lots of different chips into one chip at a much lower price-point.”
The SOC technology is found on the new FortiGate 60D Network Security Appliance, which offers 1.5 Gbps firewall throughput and seven GbE ports; and the FortiWiFi-60D, with the same features but includes 802.11 a/b/n connectivity.
Also launched this week are the FortGate 60C-PoE, with power over Ethernet ports, and the FortiGate 60CM with a 3G/4G wireless card for connecting to cellular networks. This can be used for areas where a landline WAN connection isn’t available, or for wireless backup.
The three new PoE managed switches: the FortiSwitch-124B-POE with a total of 26 ports including 24 10/100 ports; the FortiSwitch-224B-POE, with 24 Gigabit Ethernet ports; and the FortiSwitch-324B-POE, a server aggregation switch.
Fortinet says all of these products were developed for retailers that face stringent PCI regulatory compliance, the growing need for uninterrupted network uptime, and support for centralized system management for remote branch offices and outlets with little to no technical resources.
They support Forintet’s distributed enterprise architecture in that they can be managed by the FortiOS 5 operating system, with the UTM appliances linked to Fortinet aggregation switches in the data centre.
Maddison also said Fortinet has a new partnership with Euclid Analytics, an analytics platform maker, whose software is being developed to run on Fortinet access points to capture data for measuring customer traffic, response to promotions and other uses.