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The International Information System Security Certification Consortium, or (ISC)2, is a nonprofit organization that focuses on training for cybersecurity professionals. It is described as the "world's largest IT security organization" and is widely known for valuable certification and credential options. It has been around since the mid 1980s, growing and adapting as cybersecurity has shifted in the United States.
There are many benefits to (ISC)2 certification, including:
These benefits and the specific credentials you can gain through (ISC)2 certification can help you be prepared for moving forward in your career.
WGU offers two (ISC)2 certifications, the Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) and the Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP).
Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) is a vendor-neutral certification that is focused on cloud security and has been in use since 2015. This certification is meant to address the challenges and issues that are faced in cloud computing and is generally geared towards candidates who already have IT and cybersecurity experience. Candidates will learn about cloud security, design, operations, access controls, systems security, and orchestration of services. CCSP is a stand-alone certification that builds on your existing knowledge and credentials.
The six areas of focus for CCSP certification are:
Jobs that use or require the CCSP certification include:
The Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP) is an ideal certification for security professionals who have proven technical skills and hands-on knowledge in IT. It has been utilized in the cybersecurity industry since 2001. It demonstrates a candidate's ability to implement, monitor, and administer IT infrastructure in a way that meets policies and procedures. Information security is vital for organizations, and understanding incident response, security technologies, and more, are all important parts of this security certification. Candidates are able to demonstrate skills in seven areas including:
Jobs that typically use or require the SSCP:
In order to qualify for the Certified Cloud Security Professional exam and certification, candidates must meet the following requirements:
After passing the CCSP exam, candidates will need to complete the (ISC)2 endorsement process. Candidates must also recertify every three years, a process that involves continuing professional education credits and an annual maintenance fee.
The CCSP exam costs $599 to take, and candidates may spend additional money on preparation materials. WGU students, however, are able to take the exam and get study materials as part of their tuition for their degree program.
The CCSP exam is 125 questions and takes roughly three hours to complete. Study time varies based on your experience, but most professionals suggest spending 120 days studying for the certification exam.
In order to qualify for Systems Security Certified Practitioner certification, candidates must meet the following requirements:
After passing the SSCP exam, candidates will need to complete the (ISC)2 endorsement process. Candidates must also recertify over a period of three years, a process that involves continuing professional education credits and an annual maintenance fee.
The SSCP exam costs $250 to take, and candidates may spend additional money on preparation materials. WGU students, however, are able to take the exam and get study materials as part of their tuition for their degree program.
The SSCP exam is 125 questions and takes roughly three hours to complete. Study time varies based on your experience, but most professionals suggest spending 120 days studying for the certification exam.
The average salary level for professionals with SSCP certification is over $93,000 per year. IT professionals who earn an SSCP certification can sometimes see up to 15% pay increase, depending on their location and experience in the field. The SSCP certification can help qualify you for additional responsibilities, promotions, and job changes that can drastically increase your salary.
The average salary level for those with the CCSP certification is over $138,000 per year. IT professionals with the CCSP certification can sometimes see a 20% salary increase for obtaining their certification. Location, experience, and additional credentials will also impact your salary increase potential.
(ISC)2 offers many certifications that can be beneficial for cybersecurity professionals, but the CCSP and SSCP are two of the most popular for IT pros. These certifications focus on security and cloud structures that are increasingly valuable in the IT realm.
Both the SSCP and CCSP certifications enhance your body of knowledge and are valuable credentials for your résumé in the IT world. These certifications demonstrate advanced understanding in security and cloud systems.