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10 Best Cybersecurity Certifications (2023)

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The demand for cybersecurity professionals has gone drastically up in the last few years. We have seen almost every professional domain shift online, be it online teaching in schools and colleges, online grocery shopping, medicines, finding vaccination centers, having online events like virtual conferences and hackathons, and even online study circles. With the advent of this huge amount of dependence on the Internet, there also comes a great responsibility of securing the data of users, preventing servers from being taken down, fending vandalism of websites, securing users of the application against various attacks, and what not! 

Since people were not allowed to go out during the lockdown unless it was an emergency, almost everyone had to shop online. This eventually means, millions of financial transactions happening worldwide, and therefore, a huge responsibility on security professionals to secure these payments and prevent any data leak. 

Best Cybersecurity Certifications 2023

 

Due to all these factors mentioned above, there has been significant growth in the job openings for cybersecurity experts. To find the best professionals, organizations usually filter the candidates on the basis of the official industry-level certifications as it proves that the candidate has the required working knowledge to carry out the required tasks. If you are planning a career in cybersecurity and hold an interest in security-related domains, you have come to the right place! 

We will be discussing the top cybersecurity certifications that you can go for to prove your skills and eventually land the job of your dreams.

What is a Cybersecurity Certification?

Cybersecurity Certification is a kind of proof that is set by an entity to meet the needs of cybersecurity and data protection benchmarks that are defined by third-party companies. People who are entitled to these kinds of certifications are hired to protect companies’ data from cybercriminals and hacking groups.

Entry-Level Cybersecurity Certifications:

1. EH-Council Certified Ethical Hacker

CEH is one of the most demanded security certifications in the cybersecurity industry and can only be cracked with a great deal of effort. The latest CEHv12 is an advanced version of CEHv11 where there are enhanced attack methodologies and lab techniques, an increasing number of labs, etc. If you clear CEH, you can apply to dozens of jobs like Network Engineer, Cyber Defense Analyst, Warning Analyst, IT Security Administrator, Solution Architect, Cybersecurity Consultant, Information Security Manager, and a lot more! The course outline contains 20 modules with domains that include SQL injection, Cryptography, IoT hacking, Cloud computing, Session hijacking, Sniffing, Malware threats, hacking web servers, Social engineering, Denial-of-Service, etc.

  • Cost of the Exam: Varies between $1,050 to $1,119. Training is excluded.
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ based
  • Number of Questions: 125
  • Time Limit: 4 hours
  • Pass Percentage: 65% – 85% depending on the difficulty.

2. CompTIA Security+

Security+ is a globally recognized cybersecurity certificate that measures and assesses the candidate’s ability to carry out core security operations to be able to pursue an IT security career. The structure of this exam is designed as such so that it aligns with the latest trends and techniques and proves that the professional has required hands-on skills and is prepared to solve a wider variety of complex issues. Skills that can be learned through the Security+ Exam are attacks, threats, and vulnerabilities on embedded devices, newer variants of DDoS attacks, access management, cryptography, threat detection, risk mitigation techniques, governance, risk, and compliance.

  • Cost of the Exam: $392 (approx)
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ and PBQ based
  • Number of Questions: 90
  • Time Limit: 90 minutes
  • Passing Marks: 750 (On a scale of 100-900)

3. GIAC Security Essential Certification (GSEC)

Provided by Global Information Assurance Certification, GSEC is the first level of security authorization for people who are from the background of networking and information systems and networking. This certification helps you to earn skills in security tasks, such as network security, active defense, cryptography, cloud security, and incident response. Any person who is working as an IT professional in a company where security plays a major role may be benefited from this certification. Also, if one wants to get knowledge and experience in information and security then this certification acts as a boon. 

  • Cost of the Exam: $949
  • Exam Pattern: Open Book Exam
  • Number of Questions: 106-180 
  • Time Limit: 4-5 hours
  • Passing Marks: 73%

4. Offensive Security Certified Professional

The OSCP PEN-200 exam is designed uniquely to test and prepare individuals to be successful penetration testers. The course is intended for Infosec professionals transitioning into penetration testing, pen testers seeking an industry-leading certification, security professionals, network administrators, and other technology professionals. The course also requires to have some prerequisites. These include a concrete understanding of TCP/IP networks, knowledge of Python and Bash scripting along with Windows and Linux Administrator experience. The exam covers topics such as command line, practical tools, active and passive information gathering, vulnerability scanning, buffer overflows, client-side attacks, web application attacks, locating and fixing exploits, privilege escalation, password attacks, Metasploit, and tunneling. Overall, it is guaranteed to make you an expert penetration professional.

  • Cost of the Exam: Varies between $999 to $2148
  • Exam Pattern: Practical Based
  • Time Limit: 24 hours
  • Passing Marks: 70 (out of 100)

Mid-Level Cybersecurity Certifications:

5. CompTIA PenTest+

PenTest+ assesses necessary penetration testing, vulnerability detection, and mitigation management skills required to find how resilient the network is against attacks. Skills that are learned via this exam are planning and scoping of compliance-based assessments, information gathering or reconnaissance to prepare for the exploit and then performing vulnerability scans and analyzing results, RF-based vulnerabilities, post-exploitation techniques, using various penetration testing tools, reporting and communicating the best mitigation strategies from the discovered vulnerabilities. Some jobs that use PenTest+ are Penetration tester, Vulnerability tester, Security analyst (II), Vulnerability Assessment Analyst, Network Security Operations, and Application Security Vulnerability. 

  • Cost of the Exam: $392
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ and PBQ based
  • Number of Questions: 85
  • Time Limit: 165 minutes
  • Passing Marks: 750 (On a scale of 100-900)

6. Certified Information Systems Security Professional

CISSP by (ISC)² is said to be one of the most renowned professional and advanced-level cybersecurity certifications. This is a highly reputable credential and is the 2nd most requested IT certificate worldwide with the highest number of job openings in cybersecurity asking for a CISSP. It evaluates the expertise of the professional in eight different domains which include Security and Risk Management, Asset Security, Security Architecture and Engineering, Communication and Network Security, Identity and Access Management (IAM), Security Assessment and Testing, Security Operations, and Software Development Security. 

You need to know that the CISSP exam uses Computerized Adaptive Testing (CAT) for all English exams. And for all other languages, CISSP exams are administered as linear, fixed-form exams. Let’s check the exam details for both modes:

CISSP CAT Exam – 

  • Cost of the Exam: Varies between $749 to $800
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ and Advanced Innovative Items
  • Number of Questions: 100-150
  • Exam Language: English
  • Time Limit: 3 hours
  • Passing Marks: 700 (out of 1000)

CISSP Linear Exam –

  • Cost of the Exam: Varies between $749 to $800
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ and Advanced Innovative Items
  • Number of Questions: 250
  • Exam Language: French, German, Brazilian Portuguese, Spanish-Modern, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Korean
  • Time Limit: 6 hours
  • Passing Marks: 700 (out of 1000)

7. Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)

CISA is an authorized IT professional association that helps to show your expertise in evaluating security vulnerabilities, reporting on compliances, implementing and designing controls, etc. This Certified Information System Auditor is one of the best certifications for a person who wants to make his/her career in cybersecurity auditing. This certification is also good for security professionals who want to get certification for being recognized internationally in system auditing and controls. This certification focuses on the major 5 areas including, governance and management of IT, information systems operations and business resilience, information system auditing process, and information system acquisition, development, and implementation. 

  • Cost of the Exam: $575
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ
  • Number of Questions: 150
  • Time Limit: 4 hours
  • Passing Marks: 450 

Advanced Level Cybersecurity Certifications:

8. Certified Information Security Manager (CISM)

CISM or Certified Information Security Manager certification is one of the courses which is recognized all over the world. It is also considered the standard for numerous professionals who want to gain recognization in the work they do. The security manager is responsible for establishing a proper connection between the complete security management team. They also help in managing security, developing programs, managing risks, deploying, and providing comprehensive services. In order to appear for the CISM examination one should’ve got a minimum of 5 years of experience in information security management. 

  • Cost of the Exam: $760
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ
  • Number of Questions: 150
  • Time Limit: 4 hours
  • Passing Marks: 450 (out of 800)

9. CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP+)

This certification has been particularly crafted for cybersecurity professionals who have advanced skills but still want to continue their work in technology. CASP+ is an advanced level certification the people who are interested in the security of any company rather than managers. There are four areas of technical skills that this certification requires, for example, security operations, security engineering and cryptography, security architecture, governance, risk, and compliance. 

  • Cost of the Exam: $494
  • Exam Pattern: MCQ and Performance-based
  • Number of Questions: 90
  • Time Limit: 165 minutes
  • Passing Marks: No scaled score

10. GIAC Certified Incident Handler (GCIH)

Getting knowledge about GCIH helps you to understand offensive operations including the ability to detect the attacks and their techniques, how you respond after seeing them and how you defend your system against those attacks. This certification actually covers hacker exploits, incident handling, computer crime investigation hacker tools, etc. This certification is only valid for 4 years and if you want to continue it further then you will have to again go through the complete process of education and training.

  • Cost of the Exam: $2,499
  • Exam Pattern: Proctored Exam
  • Number of Questions: 106
  • Time Limit: 4 hours
  • Passing Marks: 70%

Conclusion:

These were the top cybersecurity certifications that you can go for if you are looking to work in security-related fields. These certificates will not only ensure that you have good theoretical skills but will also validate your practical skills and that you can respond quickly in an Incidence of Response. These will sharpen your skills, make you think like a hacker, and cover a lot of domains thereby opening a huge pool of opportunities in the network, infrastructure, and security-related domains.

FAQ’s on Cybersecurity Certifications: 

Q1. Is Cybersecurity a good career? 

Ans: Yes, cyber security is a good career and has a lot of benefits. This is a flourishing field and a very vast field with a lot more to explore in each of the domains. 

Q2. What are the best cybersecurity certifications for beginners? 

Ans: These are the best cybersecurity certifications for beginners:

  • EH-Council Certified Ethical Hacker
  • CompTIA Security+
  • GIAC Security Essential Certification (GSEC)
  • Offensive Security Certified Professional

Q3. How long does it take to get certified in cybersecurity?

Ans: The job skills can be built in 6-8 months and then you can step up the ladder level-wise, for example, start with the beginner’s course, then intermediate, and then advance. You can choose the certifications according to your choice and necessity. 



Last Updated : 20 Dec, 2022
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