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10 Security Certifications To Boost Your Career
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User Rank: Apprentice
10/6/2015 | 2:15:06 AM
So who can actually afford them?
Most orginizations won't pay for the certifications if you don't already have them, especially if they don't fit into your current job description. And the prices of most of this is a full two weeks paycheck for most.

They keep saying there isn't enough "qaulified" security professionals. What constitutes qaulified? Those that sold their house to get certified, those that can find the ways to study but don't have certifications due to lack of funds?

IF they count only those with certifications as qaulified, they need to find ways so that those of us that really want to get into the field, help in the field can get those without selling our first unborn and grandparents.


User Rank: Apprentice
10/6/2015 | 9:17:19 AM
Re: So who can actually afford them?

Hit the nail on the head.  Also, if you aren't in a technical role it becomes even more difficult to get approval from your employer.  I know a lot of good, decent sales people out there that would like to expand their skill set and get the "big picture" when it comes to their clients, and the cost of these certifications forces them into learning through their customers.  This can be fine depending on the situation, but usually it just makes them look incompetent. 
User Rank: Apprentice
10/6/2015 | 10:49:49 AM
Be creative
If you really want training in infosec you will find a way to get it. Don't wait for an employer to hand it to you. Look for scholarship opportunities and work study programs. SANS has big discounts for people willing to work for their training. If you wait for someone else to make your future for you, you are going to be waiting a long time. 
User Rank: Apprentice
10/6/2015 | 10:56:17 PM
In regards to the CompTia (SY0-401) Security+ Certification:
The following statement: 

"Candidates must have a minimum of two years of experience in IT administration with a focus on security."


is incorrect (or misleading at the very least). Prerequisite impies that something is required beforehand. It is not a requirement to have a minimum of two years of experience in IT admininstration with a focus on security - or any experience at all for that matter. Unlike most other security-related certifications, it is only recommended that the individual have said experience. They also recommend taking and passing the A+ and Network+ exams first as a prerequisite as well. Personally, I just purchased the voucher, took the exam, and passed as a 1st-time "go". I took it less than a month after earning my B.S. in Cybersecurity; without attempting neither the A+ nor Network+ exam(s) beforehand. Also, keep in mind that this is definitely an entry-level certification. It has provided little to no benefit for me in gaining an entry-level job in the InfoSec field (even working the most basic "InfoSec Help Desks"), and thats in addition to me having a Bachelor's of Science degree in Cybersecurity from an NSA/DHS approved institution of academic excellence in teaching information assurance. 

User Rank: Strategist
10/7/2015 | 10:56:49 AM
Alternative sources for education
There's some discussion here on where to get your learn-on from. I think a lot of people are confusing a "boot camp" with actual education. A boot camp that is a week or so long really should be seen as a review for a test. I took one for my CISSP and it helped as it jogged my memory and made me aware of where I was a little weak. However, I don't think you'd pass without background/experience unless you went to a test-question boot camp, good luck on that one. I also don't think an employer would pay for someone to get a MS in an IT related field since that would be the closest thing to getting any real information about a particular subject versus hands-on/industry experience.

That being said, there are plenty of places to get your learn-on from: YouTube, Udemy, SecureNinja, to name a few. YouTube is free and Udemy also has courses for free, a lot of good courses for $10 and if you hunt them down, coupon codes for other excellent courses. With Udemy I have CCNA, CCNP, PMP, some cloud stuff... and I can usually d/l it so I can listen to it during the morning commute or I'll stream it.

There are also places like ISSA and ISACA. I joined ISACA and will be going for CISM review shortly. There are also community colleges that have a lot of IT courses for continuing education as well.
User Rank: Apprentice
10/11/2015 | 5:18:42 PM
CEH!?! Really?
I am not sure if the Author has completed the CEH vs other Penetration Testing certifications, however it does not hold a candle to either GIAC GPEN or Offensive Securities OSCP. I have completed them so believe that I am in a pretty good position to judge. Pen Testing / Offensive type security must be learnt by doing, it's alot like coding, CEH is 100% theoretical and because of this, you forget most of it right after the exam.

If any of your readers are serious about Pen Testing or learning the capabilities of a hacker in order to defend against the techniques then I would highly recommend:



3. CEH (if you want to do an organised course, otherwise self training and research is your best bet)
User Rank: Apprentice
10/13/2015 | 10:19:37 AM
Re: CEH!?! Really?
Unlike all the other certs, the OSCP requires actual demonstration of penetration skills on a test network; there is no 'multiple guess' test here. This makes this certification stand out above all others, especially over the "management" oriented certs (CISSP) which can be passed with a minimum of studying and luck on the exam.
User Rank: Apprentice
10/30/2015 | 11:12:44 AM
Re: So who can actually afford them?
The CISM is a money pit of cash and travel though they do force you to stay up to speed if you take it seriously.

I had to volunteer to be the mascot of the security team for over a year before I now get to play in their sandbox.

I also volunteered for the veracode side of the house with the Devs to get more experience while still doing my day job of Incident / Problem mgmt.
User Rank: Apprentice
10/30/2015 | 3:11:31 PM
I think that certifications that actually help to ensure an efficient process of constant monitoring and incident response must be included on your list. Talking about security operations are increasing his demand and it helps to identify hugh improvement opportunities.
User Rank: Strategist
11/3/2015 | 8:07:10 AM
Re: CEH!?! Really?

I agree with your take on the certs.  CISSP is the Ph.D. of management security certs, but not necessarily the practical side.  The SSCP makes great strides to bridge that gap, but does fall short.  The GIAC certs, of which I've attempted one, are good, but totally impractical due to cost.  I don't know how they stay in business with what they charge.  If companies are willing to fork over those funds, oh well.  For most individuals paying on their own - ain't happenin'.  Thanks again for your note.
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