The government of United States and all the medium and large scale American corporate houses have been on high alert for the last couple of years. There is a severe scarcity of qualified and skilled security professionals, thereby leading to a number of security breaches and unfixable loopholes in the system. The exact numbers are not yet confirmed, but rough estimates state that the shortfall is around 200K to 250K security professionals, with the global shortfall reaching up to 1.5 million or even more. Experts are of the opinion that these shortfall figures are surely going to increase within a few years, if, in case, nothing is done to fix the situation.

An IT professional with CISSP Certification & Training, or Certified Information Systems Security Professional certification, is someone with an ample amount of seasoning and experience necessary for working as a consultant or employee. The job role most suitable for someone with such a certification is CISO or Chief Information Security Officer, security analyst or security manager. But to be eligible for the said job roles, a candidate needs to have been working for 5 years or more in the IT security field and must have an ample amount of knowledge pertaining to the art of detecting and solving IT threats. A CISSP certified IT professional will also be responsible for creating various policies that will act as the base structure for software based security as well as risk management. Let us now take a look at what it takes to become CISSP certified. Read on to find out more.

Becoming CISSP certified – a guide

  • Have a total work experience of 5 years – For gaining the CISSP certification, a candidate must prove that he has worked for 5 years as full time network or system security professional, dealing with security operations, risk and security management, security engineering, access and identity management, etc. This job experience is of the utmost importance when it comes to the certification process as well as the application phase.
  • Qualify in the examination – A candidate must score a total of 700 or more out of 1000 to successfully qualify in the examination. The test duration is exactly 6 hours or 360 minutes, and is mainly MCQ-based. The examination fee that every candidate needs to pay is around USD 600. The candidate can download the Study App from the (ISC)2 website to benefit from a detailed exam outline and study material.
  • Get yourself endorsed – After qualifying in the above mentioned examination, you need to subscribe to the Code of Ethics associated with (ISC)2 and submit the endorsement form if you want to get yourself CISSP certified. You must also remember to have the endorsement form signed and endorsed by another CISSP certified IT professional or a member of (ISC)2, who is eligible and qualified enough to verify and attest the validity of your work experience. The endorsement form with the proper signatures should be submitted within 9 months after you have passed the examination. This is vital if you want your CISSP certification.

After all these steps have been followed, you must remember that your certification needs revalidation every three years. A total maintenance fee of USD 255 must be paid for a period of three years by every CISSP certified IT professional. The CPE credit score counter should be at 120 for these three years without any failure or mistake.

Certifications other than CISSP

If you do not have any work experience but still feel that CISSP is the ideal career choice for you, you can always try to become an official and endorsed (ISC)2 Associate. This Associate program is perfect for students who are planning on working as credible IT security professionals. The applicants are allowed access to peer networking, forums and educational opportunities offered by (ISC)2 authorities. You can also try to gain Security+, Network+ and Entry-level A+ certifications from CompTIA to improve your chances of becoming an (ISC)2 Associate. All in all, it can be said that ways and means are always there to allow you to work in the IT security field without having to wait for gaining 5 years of work experience. Just keep your eyes and ears open and do the needful.