Information Security & Ethical Hacking

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10 Best Cyber Security Certifications To Boost Your Career

Posted in Information Security & Ethical Hacking

Cyber Security Certification is a must to become a cybersecurity specialist.

There is an unprecedented amount of data that is being generated, stored, and processed all the time by the scientific, corporate, government, military, financial, and medical organizations, a significant of which is very sensitive and requires continuous protection. Cybersecurity concerns with the technologies and practices implemented to protect this virtual world. It is the practice of securing systems, networks, and programs from digital threats, damage, and unauthorized access. It also refers to the protection of information technology. For adequate protection against cyber-attacks, every organization needs to account for each of the following elements:

  • Application Security
  • Business Continuity
  • Cloud Security
  • Data Security
  • Database and Infrastructure Security
  • Disaster Recovery
  • End-User Education
  • End Point Security
  • Identity Management
  • Mobile Security
  • Network Security

Cyber Security Job Profile

The main job of a cybersecurity professional is the protection of data. The job responsibilities of cybersecurity professionals are very complicated and span across all organizations. Before you look for cybersecurity certification, you need to look into the different career options. These are but not limited to:

  • Security Specialist
  • Security Administrator
  • Security Architect
  • Security Analyst
  • Security Auditor
  • Security Director
  • Security Consultant
  • Security Engineer
  • Cryptographer
  • Chief Information Security Officer
  • Vulnerability Assessor
  • Incident Responder
  • Forensic Expert
  • Penetration Tester
  • Source Code Auditor
  • Security Manager
  • Cryptanalyst
  • Best Cyber Security Certification

Most of the Cyber Security jobs require a four year Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology. It generally covers a foundation in Programming, Database, and Statistics with an insight into Artificial Intelligence, Cryptography, and Ethical Hacking.

A Master’s Degree takes an additional one to two years after the Bachelor’s Degree. It provides advanced instruction in protecting computer networks and infrastructures from threats. You learn about ethics, policies, and procedures of cybersecurity and how to carry out security measures and defense techniques. It prepares students to be sophisticated practitioners and enables them to investigate critical technologies such as digital forensics, biometry, and cryptography.

Best Cyber Security Certifications

There are many numbers of online and traditional on-campus programs for cyber security certifications. Most of them focus on network and data protection at different levels. Each certification prepares an aspirant for a specific purpose. Such courses explore cryptographic techniques, computer security, digital forensics, and designs for network perimeter defenses. Let us look into the different cyber security certifications worth considering. Before choosing a cyber security certification, it is essential to make sure that the course is accredited and aligns with the targeted career goal.

1. CEH: Certified Ethical Hacker

CEH: Certified Ethical Hacker

This certification teaches you how to think and act like a hacker. Topics in this certification cover hacking technologies, the latest vulnerabilities, information security laws, and standards. Students are put through real-time scenarios, exposed to hacking techniques, and finally taught how to scan hack and protect their system from the same. This course benefits security professionals, site administrators, and anyone concerned with network security. This certification gives you an edge towards penetration testing jobs.

You can signup here

2. CISM (Certified Information Security Manager)

CISM (Certified Information Security Manager)

It is a top credential for IT professionals in enterprise-level applications for developing the best organizational security practices. An aspirant here needs five years of proven cybersecurity experience. However, a combination of education and experience may also be substituted for this requirement. The CISM is valid for three years, and credential holders need to pay an annual maintenance fee. Credential holders of this certification possess advanced skills in

  • Security Risk Management
  • Program Development and Management
  • Governance
  • Incident Management and Response.

You can signup here.

3. CompTIA Security+

CompTIA Security+ Certification

It is a general level certification for those who are new to cyber technology. It requires two years to complete it. It covers the following IT concepts:

  • Network threats and defense techniques
  • Effective security policies
  • Network and Host-based security practices
  • Disaster Recovery
  • Encryption Standards and Products

You can signup here.

4. CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional)

CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional)

Many IT organizations consider this certification as an essential requirement for network security. It is a vendor-independent certification and can be applied to a wide variety of set-ups. This certification requires prior experience of 3 – 5 years, and once completed, it is one of the best knowledge assets you can have. This course covers the following domains:

  • Access Control
  • Cryptography
  • Telecommunications
  • Networking

You can signup here.

5. GSEC: GIAC Security Essentials

Cyber Security Certification: GSEC

This certification requires five years of relevant work experience. It is an entry-level certification designed for professionals who aspire to occupy ‘hands-on’ security roles. GSEC certified professionals possess technical skills in identifying and preventing wireless attacks, access controls, authentication, password management, DNS, cryptography fundamentals, ICMP, IPv6, critical public infrastructure, Linux, Network Mapping, and Network Protocols. This certification needs to be renewed every four years along with a payment of certification maintenance fee, also every four years. It is more of management focused certification, and it covers the following domains:

  • Information Security Program Development and Management
  • Information Security Management
  • Information Security Incident Management
  • Information Risk Management and Compliance

You can signup here.

6. ECSA: EC-Council Certified Security Analyst

EC-Council Certified Security Analyst (ECSA): Penetration Testing

This certification is similar to the CEH certification. This certification gives you an understanding of hacking tools and the latest technologies. This certification is suitable for Network Server Administrator, Information Security Tester, Firewall Administrator, System Administrator, Risk Assessment Professional, and more.

You can signup here.

7. GPEN: GIAC Penetration Tester

Penetration Testing

It is a certification for personnel whose job duties involve assessing target networks and find security vulnerabilities. The topic areas for this certification are:

  • Password Formats and Hashes, Advanced Password Attacks, Attacking Password Hashes
  • Exploitation Fundamentals, Escalation and Exploitation, Domain Escalation and Persistence Attacks
  • Kerberos Attacks, Metasploit, Moving Files with Exploits
  • Penetration Test Planning
  • Penetration Testing with PowerShell and the Windows Command Line
  • Scanning and Host Discovery, Vulnerability Scanning
  • Web Application Injection Attacks
  • Web Application Reconnaissance

You can signup here.

8. SSCP: Systems Security Certified Practitioner

SSCP – The Premier Security Administrator CertificationThis certification ensures that you have acquired the advanced technical skills to implement, monitor, and administer IT infrastructure using best security practices, procedures, and policies established by the cybersecurity experts. This certification is ideal for IT administrators, managers, directors, and network security professionals, including those holding the following job positions:

  • Network Security Engineer
  • Systems Administrator
  • Security Analyst
  • Systems Engineer
  • Security Consultant/Specialist
  • Security Administrator
  • Systems/Network Analyst
  • Database Administrator

You can signup here.

9. CRISC: Certified in Risk and Information System Control

CRISC: Certified in Risk and Information System ControlIt is an enterprise risk management qualification for professionals looking forward to extending their knowledge and experience of IT, Business Risk, identification, and implementation of Business Systems Control. CRISC is one of the first certifications which help to prepare IT professionals for real-world threats. It adds a higher value to employers and clients in risk assessment and management, fosters continuous knowledge, and up to date information. CRISC certification is targeted towards professionals whose job responsibilities include the following roles:

  • IT Professionals
  • Risk Professionals
  • Control Professionals
  • Business Analysts
  • Project Managers
  • Compliance Professionals

You can signup here.

10. CISA: Certified Information Systems Auditor

CISA: Certified Information Systems AuditorThis certification focuses on Information Auditing. CISA certified professionals have good audit experience and can manage vulnerabilities. It, too, requires five years of prior experience. Students gain expertise in the following domains:

  • Information Systems Auditing
  • IT Management and Governance
  • Protection of Information Assets

You can signup here.

Bonus Cybersecurity Certification

11. CCSP: Certified Cloud Security Professional

Traditional IT security protocols do not work in a cloud environment. This certification gives IT professionals a deep understanding of cloud architecture, its design, operations, and services. It needs five years of prior experience. This certification covers the following domains:

  • Concepts of Cloud Architecture and Design
  • Cloud Data and Security
  • Platform and Infrastructure Security
  • Cloud Operations
  • Legal and Compliance

You can signup here.

12. CHFI: Computer Hacking Forensic Investigator

This is an advanced cybersecurity certification for forensic network security investigators. It enables you to gather the necessary evidence and prosecute offenders in a court of law. The hacking forensic investigator is responsible for analyzing attacks, extricating information, report hacking crimes, and conduct audits to prevent future crimes. This certification covers:

  • Incident Response and Forensics
  • Recovering deleted, encrypted or damaged file information
  • Technical Examination & Analysis
  • Reporting of Computer-based evidence.

You can signup here.

13. CCNA: Cisco Certified Network Associate Security

It is a Cisco Certified associate-level certification that goes a long way in taking forward your career in CISCO Security. This certification enables you to:

  • Recognize threats and vulnerabilities in CISCO network
  • Mitigate Security Threats
  • Develop an effective security infrastructure.

There are more programs or certifications provided by them that may coincide with your career goal.

You can signup here.

In addition to the certifications listed above, do not miss out on reviewing the various IT Security of the Training Providers and the programs offered by them.


Before you dive into this career, understand the very need for this service. What you are protecting and what happens if it is not protected are two very elementary instincts for this job role. There is no one exact entry point for a career in cybersecurity. Professionals can steer themselves into it from a variety of backgrounds such as Software Developers, Data Analysts, Database Administrators, Network Administrators, IT Customer Service, Web Administrators, and more. However, an understanding of technical processes is a must-have to proceed into this career path. Also, instead of starting as a fresher in this career path, you may begin as a regular IT professional and navigate your way into a cyber-security expert.

If you are new to Cyber Security, udemy's course Learn Ethical Hacking From Scratch will surely prove to be a great starting point for you.

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Barnali Chanda

Barnali Chanda

Barnali is a software developer, who eventually transformed into a technical documentation writer with her continuous research and development skills. She is an expert in C, C++, PHP, Python and RDBMS. She makes sure to evolve with technology. Thus, trained in BI, she is a Data Science enthusiast and is on the verge to pursue a career in Data Science. View all posts by the Author

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Daisy Palmer
Daisy Palmer

How can I get into cybersecurity with no experience?

Irvin Martinez
Irvin Martinez

You might think a career in cybersecurity is only possible for people from adjacent fields who already have the technical proficiency needed to make software and applications more secure, but there are opportunities for those who want to transition from a non-technical background as well. Having a non-technical background means you probably won’t have coding and development skills; however, it’s possible certain coding or development skills aren’t even necessary to be hired. Cyber policy analyst and technical writer are examples of non-technical cybersecurity jobs. These are positions you could obtain with skills you might already have.

Lula Robbins
Lula Robbins

Do you need a lot of math for cybersecurity?

Levi Young
Levi Young

Entry level cyber security careers generally only require basic math concepts that are used in binary, cryptography or programming tasks. Higher level math concepts such as calculus are not required in most cyber security positions, but may be a requirement in certain cyber security degree programs or advanced level careers.

Johnnie Massey
Johnnie Massey

Does cybersecurity require coding?

Benjamin Elliott
Benjamin Elliott

The majority of entry-level cybersecurity jobs do not require coding skills. However, being able to write and understand code may be necessary in some mid-level and upper-level cybersecurity positions that you will become qualified for after you’ve built a few years of experience.

Lindsey Alvarez
Lindsey Alvarez

Is cybersecurity a good career?

Felicia Logan
Felicia Logan

As hacks and data breaches continue to dominate headlines, it comes as no surprise that cyber security experts are among the most sought-after professionals. While the job is respectable and pays decently good, work in the information security industry can be demanding, stressful, and routine. At present, the growth in ‘networked’ economy has also fueled massive growth in cyber-crime, making it a cause for concern among most organisations, both public and private.

Caleb Schultz
Caleb Schultz

What certifications should I get for cybersecurity?

Franklin Buchanan
Franklin Buchanan

The demand for cybersecurity professionals has continued to increase over the past couple of years. Therefore, earning a certification in this field is an excellent way to boost your career prospects. CISSP is an advanced-level credential in the field of IT. It is designed for those professionals who are very passionate about pursuing a career in information security. CISM is a high level credential and it is aimed at the professionals in the field of IT who are responsible for developing, overseeing, and managing information security systems in different enterprise level applications. CompTIA Security+ is a vendor neutral security credential. It is globally recognized and well respected in the industry.

Rahul Bhichher
Rahul Bhichher

Why OSCP (offensive Security Certified Professional) is not in the list?

Cole Phillips
Cole Phillips

That's what I was wondering. It's better than every other cert on this list