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New Contributor II

IPsec ESP_Error : Invalid ESP packet detected (replayed packet)

Hi, I'm having some problems with a site to site vpn connection to Branch . The error number says "Invalid ESP packet detected (replayed packet)".


Trying to find out what can cause these errors. Anyone encounter this error before that can point me in the right direct


Hi Karaked,


Anti-replay is a local setting for IPsec phase2.  It is not negotiated between IPsec peers, meaning it does not impact the establishment of tunnels.


Enable or disable Anti-Replay as follows in in IPsec phase2 configuration:
# config vpn ipsec phase2-interface
edit <phase2-name>
set replay <enable | disable>
However, anti-replay can affect the traffic through the tunnel, which can lead to ESP packets being dropped.  It is recommended to have the same anti-replay setting on both the local and peer IPsec.
The anti-replay mechanism uses sequence numbers to mark the ESP packets. The sequence number is in clear-text, meaning it should only be trusted if authentication is enabled. If anti-replay is enabled for the inbound IPsec SA or phase2, the sequence number is checked by the recipient.
The sender increases the sequence number by one for each sent ESP packet. The receiver compares the received sequence number and adjusts the sliding anti-replay window. If any encrypted packet arrives out of order and not in the window range, the FortiGate unit discards it. The receiver can reject old or duplicate packets to protect itself against replay attacks, preventing unauthorized parties from intercepting and replaying a series of IPsec packets.
The receiving FortiGate will log the discarded packets with the following message in the Event Log: 'Invalid ESP packet detected (replayed packet)'.
As the anti-replay is not negotiated, FortiGate will act according to its local anti-replay settings.
During failover in a High Availability FortiGate cluster, sequence numbers are not synchronized between the master and the slave units (depending on the FortiOS versions as well as on NP interfaces and settings). This can cause the peer FortiGate to drop ESP packets.
If anti-replay is disabled on the local IPsec unit but enabled on the peer, the sequence number from the local FortiGate should not enter the replay windows of the IPsec peer, which will discard it. In this situation, the IPsec tunnels are up on both IPsec units. The Tx ESP packet counter is increasing for phase2, but there are most likely no new Rx packets.
New Contributor II

Hi Roshan,

   Thank you so much for the advice. I'll try to slove the problem.



New Contributor II

I am curious did you upgrade your firewall to 7.4.3 ? I started getting this error with the latest version. 


Edit: found out it's a bug in 7.4.2 and 7.4.3 (CVE fixes)

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