Online Security

Fortinet VPN with Default Settings Leave 200,000 Businesses Open to Hackers


As the pandemic continues to accelerate the shift towards working from home, a slew of digital threats have capitalized on the health concern to exploit weaknesses in the remote work infrastructure and carry out malicious attacks.

Now according to network security platform provider SAM Seamless Network, over 200,000 businesses that have deployed the Fortigate VPN solution to enable employees to connect remotely are vulnerable to man-in-the-middle (MitM) attacks that could allow an attacker to present a valid SSL certificate and fraudulently take over a connection.

“We quickly found that under default configuration the SSL VPN is not as protected as it should be, and is vulnerable to MITM attacks quite easily,” SAM IoT Security Lab’s Niv Hertz and Lior Tashimov said.

“The Fortigate SSL-VPN client only verifies that the CA was issued by Fortigate (or another trusted CA), therefore an attacker can easily present a certificate issued to a different Fortigate router without raising any flags, and implement a man-in-the-middle attack.”


To achieve this, the researchers set up a compromised IoT device that’s used to trigger a MitM attack soon after the Fortinet VPN client initiates…

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