Cisco Duo vs Fortinet FortiAuthenticator comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Jan 23, 2023

We performed a comparison between Duo Security 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: Duo Security users say that the installation is straightforward. Most Fortinet FortiAuthenticator users say that the deployment is straightforward, but some users say that the initial setup can be complex.

  • Features: Users of both products are happy with their scalability and stability.

    Duo Security users like its single pane of glass management and say that it meets their security needs, offers dual-factor authentication, and has good VPN capabilities.

    Fortinet FortiAuthenticator reviewers say that it is high-performing, easy to use, and secure.

Users of both solutions would like more integration options.

  • Pricing: The majority of reviewers of both products feel that their prices are fair.

  • ROI: Users of both solutions report seeing an ROI.

  • Service and Support: Duo Security reviewers report being very satisfied with the level of support they receive. Some FortiAuthenticator users say that sometimes it can be difficult to reach higher levels of support.

Comparison Results: Duo Security is the winner in this comparison. It received high marks for its ease of deployment and support. In contrast, some FortiAuthenticator users say that the initial setup is complex and feel that the support needs to improve.

To learn more, read our detailed Cisco Duo vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Report (Updated: November 2023).
746,635 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:
"It has definitely reduced embedding. We found a lot of problems with attackers being able to compromise accounts. Now, when they try to access accounts, they are not able to do so because there is an added layer of protection. Once we know that a username and password are compromised, we just reset the password to protect the company.""The app has greater stability than rival solutions such as Google Authenticator, and Duo Push authentication is a valuable feature.""Duo Security gives us an additional layer of security that would give us added confidence that our network will be less likely to get hacked, compromised, or otherwise.""Cisco Secure solutions are great for detecting and remediating threats across our infrastructure from end to end. The integration of Talos in SecureX is great. Everything is clear in one dashboard. You have a dashboard there, your dashboard, and now you can have one look in your dashboard and see everything. It's on one pane of glass.""Cisco is the perfect product for our current size, and I don't think we'll have problems with scalability as we grow.""The ability for users to authenticate via phone, from any random phone number, has been very helpful for managing a distributed workforce. Using it across a distributed network for securing access to our applications is big for us.""The solution is easy to use.""It's pretty easy for users to figure it out."

More Cisco Duo Pros →

"The web feature is quite versatile. It serves as the sole server authenticator and is valuable not only with FortiGate products but also within the entire Forti system, making it highly useful for me.""I prefer the passing tool that sent an active directory console to a Fortinet FortiAuthenticator, then Fortinet FortiAuthenticator does not pass the locks.""This is a scalable product.""The most valuable feature is the flexibility in using the SMS messages.""It is very stable. We have never had any issues with this solution.""We have not had issues with Fortinet FortiAuthenticator. It is stable.""The product’s most valuable feature is integration with FortiGate, FortiToken, FortiTalk, and multi-factor authentication.""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."

More Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Pros →

"Duo Security should have more customized use cases. For example, if a client needs to have more customization, it would be better to connect directly with Duo's R&D to try to discuss the issues together in order to add customizations.""We use Yubikey for pushing it to the phones. Yubikeys can get expensive because people tend to lose those for some reason. Fifty dollars a device is pretty high.""Technical support could be improved. I don't think all support should have to go through an agreement.""I'm not a big fan of relicensing products every year or two years, but that's the model at the moment. I prefer to go back to licensing perpetually or permanent licensing.""Duo Security should better organize its tile feature to organize applications better.""I wish that the support would be a little bit more prompt and a little bit more flexible because there are certain things that they will do and certain things they won't do.""The pain point for us at one point was the Duo Authentication Proxy since we're on-premises and not in the cloud. We had to have a proxy machine that's in our DMZ to talk to Duo for us. The configuration of that was a little complicated.""While two-factor authentication with mobile devices provides a high level of security, it's still not foolproof, as someone could potentially steal your phone. It would be beneficial to have information about the authentication location."

More Cisco Duo Cons →

"We had issues trying to integrate the keys properly during the initial setup.""The only issue I encounter is that when not using FortiAuthenticator for an extended period, it's typical to encounter some obstacles in the configuration process that you need to address.""For improvement, Fortinet needs to ensure that they provide quick support to users...Fortinet sometimes needs to respond to users facing issues within an hour.""The integration with other products, for example, some SAML authentications, would make it more flexible.""Lacks a simplified two-factor authentication process.""I would like to see more security features in reference to identity login or identity identification.""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
  • "The licensing is very good because it does not cost a lot of money. It's affordable for all-sized customers, including enterprises. There is an additional cost for premium support."
  • "Duo Security is free."
  • "With regard to pricing, for a small business buying a one off, it's pretty expensive. If it's an enterprise that has thousands of employees, however, it's really nothing to protect your data because if your network goes down or it's breached, you're losing millions of dollars every minute. When it comes to a large enterprise, it's priced where it should be because you're talking business to business. You're not talking business to consumer."
  • "Price wise, it's not cheap, but it's not expensive at all either. It's in the middle."
  • "Overall, the pricing is fair. Customers can wrap it into their Enterprise Agreement, making it easier for them to solve their issues."
  • "The pricing is pretty competitive. It's pretty cheap. Anybody can adopt it."
  • "You pay per user when using this solution and the pricing is fair."
  • "It is affordable for what's coming to the table with it, but in this day and age, the cost is looked at under a microscope, and companies need to very finely define what is needed versus what is critical. In some cases, it might not be cost-effective for a company to have it. In a lot of other cases, it is the cost of doing business."
  • More Cisco Duo Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "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."
  • "I price of the solution is expensive."
  • "The customers need to pay for licenses, and some pay on a yearly basis while others pay on a three-yearly or five-yearly basis. Also, it is not an expensive solution."
  • "On a scale of one to ten, where one is a high price and ten is a low price, I rate the pricing a seven."
  • More Fortinet FortiAuthenticator Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:We switched to Duo Security for identity verification. We’d been using a competitor but got the chance to evaluate Duo for 30 days, and we could not be happier Duo Security is easy to configure and… more »
    Top Answer:I lead an IT organization that has a significant amount of technical debt, and we're not in a zero-trust architecture yet. I'm pushing in that direction. Duo helps me considerably with my identity in… more »
    Top Answer:The cost is very comparable to other solutions that I've used. I would in no way see any weaknesses in Duo over the other products, I would say it's a premium product, and it commands a premium price.
    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 product’s most valuable feature is integration with FortiGate, FortiToken, FortiTalk, and multi-factor authentication.
    Top Answer:The product is inexpensive compared to Cisco. I rate its pricing a three to five out of ten.
    Average Words per Review
    Average Words per Review
    Also Known As
    Duo Security
    Learn More

    Duo is a cloud-based security platform that protects access to all applications, for any user and device, from anywhere. It’s designed to be both easy to use and deploy, while providing complete endpoint visibility and control.

    Duo verifies users' identities with strong passwordless authentication and industry-leading multi-factor authentication. Paired with deep insights into your users’ devices, Duo gives you the policies and control you need to limit access based on endpoint or user risk. Users get a consistent login experience with Duo's single sign-on that delivers centralized access to both on-premises and cloud applications.

    With Duo, you can protect against compromised credentials and risky devices, as well as unwanted access to your applications and data. This combination of user and device trust builds a strong foundation for a zero trust security model.

    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."

    Learn more about Cisco Duo
    Learn more about Fortinet FortiAuthenticator
    Sample Customers
    Threadless, Yelp, Etsy, Eventbrite
    Black Gold Regional Schools, Amadeus Hospitality, Jefferson County, Chunghwa Telecom, City of Boroondara, Dimension Data
    Top Industries
    Comms Service Provider13%
    Financial Services Firm10%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Computer Software Company8%
    Computer Software Company23%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider15%
    Healthcare Company10%
    Recreational Facilities/Services Company5%
    Computer Software Company19%
    Comms Service Provider10%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    Company Size
    Small Business32%
    Midsize Enterprise21%
    Large Enterprise47%
    Small Business28%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise57%
    Small Business54%
    Midsize Enterprise29%
    Large Enterprise17%
    Small Business31%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise50%
    Buyer's Guide
    Cisco Duo vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator
    November 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Duo vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator and other solutions. Updated: November 2023.
    746,635 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco Duo is ranked 2nd in Single Sign-On (SSO) with 47 reviews while Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is ranked 5th in Single Sign-On (SSO) with 23 reviews. Cisco Duo is rated 8.8, while Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is rated 8.0. The top reviewer of Cisco Duo writes "Helps reduce the risk of a breach and is easy to deploy and onboard". 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". Cisco Duo is most compared with Microsoft Entra ID, Yubico YubiKey, Fortinet FortiToken, UserLock and Zscaler Private Access, whereas Fortinet FortiAuthenticator is most compared with Fortinet FortiToken, Microsoft Entra ID, Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine), Fortinet FortiNAC and CyberArk Privileged Access Manager. See our Cisco Duo vs. Fortinet FortiAuthenticator report.

    See our list of best Single Sign-On (SSO) vendors, best Authentication Systems vendors, and best MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication) 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.