Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) vs Fortinet FortiAuthenticator comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Sep 6, 2022

We performed a comparison between Azure Active Directory and Fortinet FortiAuthenticator based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Users of both solutions say that deployment is simple and easy.
  • Features: Users say both products have good stability, scalability, and security.

    Azure Active Directory users like the solution’s ease of use, single sign on, identity-based authentication, and its privileged access management. Users say the conditional access rules are a little limiting and that provisioning is not intuitive.

    Fortinet FortiAuthenticator users say the solution has an intuitive user interface, is easy to use, and has good integration with other Fortinet products. Reviewers mention that they want to see more integration capabilities with other products, and feel that it could offer more automation.
  • Pricing: Azure Active Directory users mention that the solution has various levels of licenses, with a free basic tier. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator users share mixed reviews on the pricing.
  • Service and Support: Most users of both solutions are satisfied with the level of support they receive.
  • ROI: Azure Active Directory users report a positive ROI. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator users do not mention ROI.

Comparison Results: Based on the parameters we compared, users favor Azure Active Directory over Fortinet FortiAuthenticator because it has a free option and users also report an ROI.

To learn more, read our detailed Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Report (Updated: January 2023).
672,411 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"We're using the whole suite: device management, user credentials, everything that's possible.""If you want to replicate a website at the frontend in Azure, it's very easy to do it globally.""With Azure Active Directory we were able to manage with different options the access for different users.""Azure Active Directory provides access to resources in a very secure manner. We can detect which user is logging in to access resources on the cloud. It gives us a comprehensive audit trace in terms of from where a user signed in and whether a sign-in is a risky sign-in or a normal sign-in. So, there is a lot of security around the access to resources, which helps us in realizing that a particular sign-in is not a normal sign-in. If a sign-in is not normal, Azure Active Directory automatically blocks it for us and sends us an email, and unless we allow that user, he or she won't be able to log in. So, the User Identity Protection feature is the most liked feature for me in Azure Active Directory.""The technical support is pretty good.""The most valuable features in Active Directory are the password writeback product and the MDM technology.""It enhanced our end user experience quite a bit. Instead of the days of having to contact the service desk with challenges for choosing their password, users can go in and do it themselves locally, regardless of where they are in the world. This has certainly made it a better experience accessing their applications. Previously, a lot of times, they had to remember multiple usernames and passwords for different systems. This solution brings it all together, using a single sign-on experience.""Microsoft Azure AD is easy to install and is a stable solution."

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"I prefer the passing tool that sent an active directory console to a Fortinet FortiAuthenticator, then Fortinet FortiAuthenticator does not pass the locks.""I work a lot with Fortinet products and I call the support often. They are very quick to respond and the support is very good.""We have not had issues with Fortinet FortiAuthenticator. It is stable.""The two-step authentication provides a higher level of security.""Simple to deploy, simple to use, and user-friendly.""The most valuable feature is the flexibility in using the SMS messages.""It reduces the need for network administrator intervention by allowing the user to perform their own registration and resolve their own password problems and issues.""The product is stable and reliable."

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Cons
"When it comes to identity governance, the governance features in Azure AD are very focused on Microsoft products. I would like to see those governance and life cycle management features offered for non-Microsoft products connected to Azure AD.""Though the installation was seamless, it took longer than expected to be completed.""For example, there were some authentication features that, for security purposes, had certain limitations. Those limitations still exist, but the portal now has options so that the customers can make custom features to manage their identity.""The solution was difficult to scale because the group's configuration was complex. I would rate the scalability level of Azure Active Directory a five out of ten.""Azure Active Directory could improve by having an authentication service for laptops or desktop computers running Mac and Linux operating systems. They currently have authentication capabilities for Microsoft Windows. Having this capability would benefit people because in today's world everybody is working from the home environment.""The main issue is that because Active Directory is in the cloud, it will inevitably be dependent on internet connectivity.""Technical support could be better.""The solution has not saved costs. While we’ve eliminated some tools, there are some other features that we are dependent on as admin, which are not yet integrated with Azure AD."

More Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) Cons →

"FortiAuthenticator's interface could be better.""We had issues trying to integrate the keys properly during the initial setup.""There are some protocols, such as SHA and SHA-2, that are not supported.""The only way the solution could be improved is if it were cheaper.""I would like to see more security features in reference to identity login or identity identification.""The price of the solution could improve, it is expensive.""I would like to see more support from Fortinet with tech support people who have as much expertise on the authenticator as they do on their firewalls.""The speed of deployment on the cloud could be improved. It took a few days when it should have been just two days"

More Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "We got a good deal. If you get rid of all the products providing features that Azure Suite can provide, then it makes sense cost-wise."
  • "Microsoft has a free version of Azure AD. So, if you don't do a lot of advanced features, then you can use the free version, which is no cost at all because it is underpinning Office 365. Because Microsoft gives it to you as a SaaS, so there are no infrastructure costs whatsoever that you need to incur. If you use the free version, then it is free. If you use the advanced features (that we use), it is a license fee per user."
  • "Make sure that you get the most out of your Office 365 licenses for Azure AD. If you have additional concerns for users who don't have an Office 365 license, consider Azure AD Premium P1 and P2. Be aware that you have to evaluate your license usage beforehand."
  • "If you have a different IDP today, I would take a close look at what your licensing looks like, then reevaluate the licensing that you have with Microsoft 365, and see if you're covered for some of this other stuff. Folks sometimes don't realize that, "Oh, I'm licensed for that service in Azure." This becomes one of those situations where you have the "aha" moment, "Oh, I didn't know we can do that. Alright, let's go down this road." Then, they start to have conversations with Microsoft to see what they can gain. I would recommend that they work closely with their TAM, just to make sure that they are getting the right level of service. They may just not be aware of what is available to them."
  • "If you are dealing with one supplier with an out-of-the-box solution, which provides you end-to-end capabilities, then it is naturally cheaper and less of a headache to manage and operate."
  • "Be sure: You know your userbase, e.g., how many users you have. You choose the right license and model that suit your business requirements."
  • "For the Czech people, the solution is not cheap, as we are not a rich country. However, for most countries, the product pricing is acceptable."
  • "Everything needs to be considered for the requirements and if it is within the budget, then you can come up with a solution, whether it is SaaS, PaaS, or IaaS."
  • More Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "FAC is an affordable solution for Middle Range (200E/400E) and also needs a package of mobility agents (2,000) perpetual."
  • "The cost of the license could be less expensive. The license is paid on a yearly basis."
  • "We pay for licensing on a yearly basis."
  • "The pricing is fair."
  • "I rate the price of Fortinet FortiAuthenticator a three out of five."
  • "Between paying them to help with the configuration, the box itself, and the support, it came to like $12,500, including a three-year service agreement."
  • "When we buy the Fortinet FortiAuthenticator device there is a comparison between price and security."
  • More Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:Azure Active Directory's single sign-on feature has been helpful because users don't need to authenticate again and again each time they access it. Users only need to sign in the first time, and Azure… more »
    Top Answer:Active Directory is bundled with a package of Microsoft services, so it doesn't cost much. I don't know about the individual license of Active Directory.
    Top Answer:Microsoft services and most familiar third-party applications are currently supported, but we can't find many other platforms that integrate with Office 365 or Azure Active Directory. Microsoft should… more »
    Top Answer:Hi, The NAC can operate without the 802.1x mechanism on the switch side. Also, I think you are making a very wrong comparison on the basis of the class it belongs to(FortiNac vs FortiAuthenticator).… more »
    Top Answer:The licensing costs are reasonable. It's not overly expensive. We pay either by the number of users or for a certain number of users that fall under a specific licensing tier.
    Ranking
    1st
    Views
    30,320
    Comparisons
    22,546
    Reviews
    98
    Average Words per Review
    959
    Rating
    8.9
    2nd
    Views
    14,872
    Comparisons
    10,379
    Reviews
    14
    Average Words per Review
    487
    Rating
    7.4
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Azure Active Directory
    FortiAuthenticator
    Learn More
    Overview


    Azure Active Directory (Azure AD), part of Microsoft Entra, is an enterprise identity service that provides single sign-on, multifactor authentication, and conditional access to guard against 99.9 percent of cybersecurity attacks.

    Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) is a cloud-based identity and access management service. This service helps your employees access external resources, such as Microsoft 365, the Azure portal, and thousands of other SaaS applications. Azure Active Directory also helps them access internal resources like apps on your corporate intranet network, along with any cloud apps developed for your own organization.

    Azure AD is intended for:

    • IT admins: As an IT admin, use Azure AD to control access to your apps and your app resources, based on your business requirements. For example, you can use Azure AD to require multi-factor authentication when accessing important organizational resources. You can also use Azure AD to automate user provisioning between your existing Windows Server AD and your cloud apps, including Microsoft 365. Finally, Azure AD gives you powerful tools to automatically help protect user identities and credentials and to meet your access governance requirements.
    • App developers: As an app developer, you can use Azure AD as a standards-based approach for adding single sign-on (SSO) to your app, allowing it to work with a user's pre-existing credentials. Azure AD also provides APIs that can help you build personalized app experiences using existing organizational data. 
    • Microsoft 365, Office 365, Azure, or Dynamics CRM Online subscribers: As a subscriber, you're already using Azure AD. Each Microsoft 365, Office 365, Azure, and Dynamics CRM Online tenant is automatically an Azure AD tenant. You can immediately start to manage access to your integrated cloud apps.

    Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is the primary secure point of approved access into the Fortinet network, authorizing users, reviewing access permissions, and relaying the information to all Fortigate devices for comparison with identity-based protocols. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is a top-ranked authorization and SSO solution.

    Appropriate secure access is fundamental to every role in an enterprise ecosystem. It is an integral function of every organization to ensure that every access and privilege is secure and to mitigate any possible risk to an organization. Approved users should only have access to the necessary information when they need it, from the appropriate location(s) to safeguard an organization's security at all times.

    Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is available as an appliance, virtual machine, or in the cloud.

    Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Methods

    • FSSO: FortiAuthenticator Single sign-on user will easily identify users and assign role or group access based on preset identity-based protocols. FortiAuthenticator integrates well with third-party LDAP or active directories, is very flexible, and combines these methods to provide effective security.

    • Active Directory Polling: Active directory access is securely identified by consistent polling of domain controllers. As users log in, username, IP address, and other details are logged into the database and can be shared across devices as directed by FortiAuthenticator protocols.

    • FortiAuthenticator Portal and Widgets: If a user system does not support AP polling, or for other reasons it is not feasible, FortiAuthenticator offers a unique secure authentication portal. Users can be manually authenticated and, to diminish the effect of numerous logins, an intuitive set of widgets is available to integrate into an organization's ecosystem that will automatically grant access to users when they access the organization's intranet homepage.

    • RADIUS Accounting Login: For organizations that use RADIUS authentication, RADIUS Accounting is available for user identification. This process will prompt user access information (IP and group, etc.) and eliminate the need for multiple levels of authentication.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Ernesto C., Presales Engineer at a comms service provider, shares,

    ”Key Features and Benefits

    1. Two-factor/OTP Authentication with FortiToken: Enforce user-based policies. Fortitoken is available in soft and hard versions for flexible usage. Most Valuable in Mobile Phones App for OTP.
    2. Integration with LDAP and AD: This solution integrates with existing enterprise systems and technologies from diverse vendors of user information management systems.
    3. LPAD/AD/RADIUS/SYSLOG/KERBEROS/REST API/FSSO and Web Portals: There is flexible integration with these services.
    4. It is usable in network, WAN, wireless, and VPN Scenarios.
    5. The domain and guest-users support are good.”

    Ibrahim M., Senior Network & Security Engineer at a tech services company, relates, "The initial setup is a valuable point on Fortinet products. Most of the time, putting the theory into practice on the devices is quite friendly and straightforward. As long as you can read English you can find your way around the solution and make it work. This is a high value point on Fortinet - the way everything is laid out in the web UI is user-friendly and quite straightforward. The UI is quite simple."




    Offer
    Learn more about Azure Active Directory (Azure AD)
    Learn more about Fortinet FortiAuthenticator
    Sample Customers
    Azure Active Directory is trusted by companies of all sizes and industries including Walmart, Zscaler, Uniper, Amtrak, monday.com, and more.
    Black Gold Regional Schools, Amadeus Hospitality, Jefferson County, Chunghwa Telecom, City of Boroondara, Dimension Data
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm15%
    Computer Software Company13%
    Manufacturing Company10%
    Energy/Utilities Company6%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Comms Service Provider9%
    Government7%
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Healthcare Company14%
    Transportation Company7%
    Marketing Services Firm7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Government9%
    Manufacturing Company4%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business32%
    Midsize Enterprise14%
    Large Enterprise54%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise66%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business51%
    Midsize Enterprise31%
    Large Enterprise17%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business32%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise50%
    Buyer's Guide
    Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator
    January 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator and other solutions. Updated: January 2023.
    672,411 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) is ranked 1st in Single Sign-On (SSO) with 101 reviews while Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is ranked 2nd in Single Sign-On (SSO) with 14 reviews. Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) is rated 8.8, while Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is rated 7.4. The top reviewer of Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) writes "With multi-factor authentication, we've seen a marked decrease in the number of threats we've seen come through". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Fortinet FortiAuthenticator writes "A reasonably priced solution that can be scaled toward different functionalities and offers flexible SMS messaging". Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) is most compared with Google Cloud Identity, Auth0, CyberArk Privileged Access Manager, PingFederate and SailPoint IdentityIQ, whereas Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is most compared with Fortinet FortiToken, Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine), Duo Security, Microsoft Authenticator and CyberArk Privileged Access Manager. See our Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator report.

    See our list of best Single Sign-On (SSO) vendors.

    We monitor all Single Sign-On (SSO) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.