Fortinet vs. WatchGuard: Firewall Comparison

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There is a great upsurge in cyberattacks, making it more crucial for your business to have a strong and efficient firewall in place. To proactively stop unauthorized connections to the business network, firewall solutions are created. Firewall solutions operate as the first line of defense for business network security, acting as a wall across both legitimate and doubtful external networks. Because of this, companies need to be very cautious when choosing their corporate firewall to provide high-quality cybersecurity.

Having said that, businesses of all sizes can provide comprehensive network security solutions using the sturdy firewalls provided by Fortinet and WatchGuard networks. Fortinet and WatchGuard are the most popular network firewalls in use today, providing unparalleled AI-powered security performance, threat intelligence, full visibility, and protected networking convergence.

Fortinet: Best for businesses looking for multi-layered advanced security with reduced complexity

WatchGuard: Best for businesses looking for cost-effective firewall solutions

To decide which will best meet the specific demands of your organization, we compare Fortinet and WatchGuard platforms’ prices, features, and performance.

Learn about the top 5 firewall software solutions in 2023.

Fortinet vs WatchGuard at a Glance

Fortinet WatchGuard
Best for Pricing Starting from $250 Starting from $100-$200 per year
Best for Core Features Innovative Security Engine Technology, Implicit Proxy Feature, centralized automated control console Convenient traffic panelling dashboard, AI-powered malware protection, and enhanced network visibility
Best for Easy of Use Effortless initial setup Easy setup with powerful client interface
Best for Accuracy, Reliability & Scalability Real-time information monitoring,  and uniform, appropriate, coordinated responses to threats across networks Network configuration for multiple clients, runs with minimal oversite
Best for Support Dedicated 24×7 global support Unlimited 24×7 support with live call assistance

Fortinet vs WatchGuard: Portfolio

Fortinet’s FortiGate Network Firewalls deliver enterprise security at any size and with an edge. By inhibiting hostile activity and some other intrusions with segmentation, total transparency, and coordinated defense, you can shield your company from breaches and system failures with FortiGate Next-Generation Firewalls. Fortinet supports business consolidation and scaling by catching up with organizational growth, reducing costs by getting rid of point products, and offering protection at scale.

By fostering precise user efficiency and operational efficiency across all sites with coordinated, managed, and standardized security, Fortinet makes it possible to work from anywhere. FortiGate NGFW is available in various models to meet your needs, right from entry-level hardware platforms to high-end appliances that can manage the strictest threat protection performance standards.

WatchGuard has almost one million integrated, multi-purpose threat management appliances installed globally. Their recognizable red boxes are designed to be the sharpest, speediest, and meanest security tools available, with each scanning engine operating at full capacity.

With appliances spanning from tabletops to 1U rack-mounted units, and essential security services like URL filtering, standard IPS, Gateway AV, application control, and antispam to services for fending off advanced threats like DNS filtering, file sandboxing, and more, WatchGuard presents the broadest selection of network security solutions available.

There is a wide variety of extendable solutions included in WatchGuard Endpoint Security to thwart hacks, information theft, and breaches. Their cloud-based platform combines technology, analytics, and knowledge to give sophisticated prevention, identification, isolation, and response capabilities through a single agent.

Fortinet WatchGuard

Fortinet vs WatchGuard: Partners

There is a diverse group of businesses that Fortinet has collaborated with. The Fortinet Fabric-Ready Technology Alliance Partner Program brings together a community of global technology partners with specialized expertise and makes tools and resources easily accessible to facilitate integration. The following companies collaborate with Fortinet to offer comprehensive and all-encompassing security solutions that make use of the market-leading Fortinet Security Fabric.

To name a few, some of Fortinet’s top industry partners are ADVANTECH, AisleLabs, Alcide, Alibaba Cloud, AWS, Centrify, CISCO, Cloudify, DELVE, Equinix, Google Cloud, IBM, Microsoft, McAfee, Oracle, VMware, Zentera, along with a long list.

On the other hand, WatchGuard makes its partner a priority with its program WatchGuardONE. This helps them to prioritize you, as a partner, and provide you with the appropriate tools to employ and leverage your business. Moreover, their personalized approach aims to help businesses grow more and earn profit like no other program existing in the industry.

Numerous firms have expressed their satisfaction and reviews while partnering with WatchGuard. For example, AnswersIT uses WatchGuard’s firebox with each of its clients while CyberPro has found success in collaboration with WatchGuard. The Verus Corporation has discovered dynamic security solutions for all of its remote end users with the help of WatchGuard passport, and organizations like Complete I.T. has been able to adopt a multilayered approach in terms of security.

Fortinet WatchGuard
Global Reach

Fortinet vs WatchGuard: Use Cases

Fortinet and WatchGuard both offer excellent support. When network edges expand exponentially, enterprises need solid security. In this situation, FortiGate enables companies to incorporate security into hybrid data center networks for end-to-end protection across different clouds and the security of every endpoint at any size. Preventing lateral spread is one of its other use cases. Businesses can regulate internal risks, limit lateral spread, and enforce security through segmentation, regardless of whether it’s based on VXLAN, a network, an endpoint, or an application. You can even implement dynamic trust and port-level segmentation by integrating Fortinet Security Fabric.

On the other hand, WatchGuard offers solutions that are widely important to almost all industries dealing with education, finance, healthcare, manufacturing, hospitality and retail, multi dwelling units, and state and local government. Each of these industries require robust network security, data protection, top notch privacy, advanced security measures, protection from cyber attacks, and safeguarding sensitive information to go public. WatchGuard makes sure that each of these industries are provided with the need in the most efficient way.

Moreover, its use cases spread over a vast area. Every business — be it small businesses with no IT dedicated staff, midsize businesses lacking sophisticated cyber security, or distributed enterprises — WatchGuard offers an MSP (managed service provider) that stretches your IT and security resources by offering initial deployment and configuration, consistent monitoring, maintenance, reporting, and more.

Fortinet WatchGuard

Fortinet vs WatchGuard: Overall Security Performance

Both Fortinet and WatchGuard firewalls offer seamless security. The Fortinet NGFWs provide edge security at any size, comprehensive network visibility, and sophisticated threat prevention. Fortinet NGFWs stand out for their comprehensive visibility and protection, AI/ML-powered FortiGuard services, a natively integrated proxy, large corporate security, automation-driven network administration, and integration of security fabrics.

On the contrary, WatchGuard offers incredibly scalable, manageable, and seamless configuration that makes it a perfect feature-rich internal firewall solution.

Fortinet WatchGuard
Use Cases

Check out Enterprise Storage Forum’s Ultimate Storage Area Network (SAN) Security Checklist.

Who Shouldn’t Use Fortinet & WatchGuard Firewall?

Although Fortinet and WatchGuard offer the best firewall solutions, they may not always suit your business. They have some disadvantages too, including separate licenses for some features and needed improvements in key areas.

Who Shouldn’t Use Fortinet Firewall?

In Fortinet Forewall, some features may require a separate license. But, these basic features are already included in the Firewall solutions provided by other companies. Also, there are memory leak issues.

Who Shouldn’t Use WatchGuard Firewall?

Some may find that WatchGuard Forewall has a very weak feature set. Also, the VPN client needs improvement.

Top 3 Fortinet & WatchGuard Alternatives

In addition to Fortinet and WatchGuard, there are other firewall providers that might want to consider based on your organization’s needs, including:

Sophos Firewall: It offers comprehensive next-generation firewall protection and synchronized security. Sophos Firewall provides superior visibility into risky activities to control unknown threats.

pfSense: It can serve the requirements of any growing network. Besides, it is a very stable and secure solution with feature-rich plug-ins.

Zscaler: Zscaler offers secure, adaptive, zero-trust protection for all internet traffic. Purposely built for today’s digital world, it offers exceptional user experience and unmatched security.

Bottom Line: Comparing Fortinet and WatchGuard Firewalls

It’s worthwhile to invest in either Fortinet and WatchGuard. Both offer robust features for most enterprise-level organizations seeking top-notch security. You can, however, evaluate and contrast the different choices before selecting the one that best meets your company’s requirements.

Kashyap Vyas
Kashyap Vyas
Kashyap Vyas is a contributing writer to Enterprise Storage Forum. He covers a range of technical topics, including managed services, cloud computing, security, storage, business management, and product design and development. Kashyap holds a Master's Degree in Engineering and finds joy in traveling, exploring new cultures, and immersing himself in Indian classical and Sufi music. uns a consulting agency.

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