How to prepare for CISSP exam?

Certification: ISC CISSP - Certified Information Systems Security Professional


The international Information Systems Security Certification Consortium governs CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional) which is an independent certification for information security. The certification is valid worldwide according to the reports of (ISC)2. The CISSP obtained the ANSI ISO/IEC Standard 17024:2003 accreditation in June 2004. Te certification is also approved by Department of Defense of US, for both of Information Assurance Technical (IAT) and Information Technical Managerial (IAM) categories. It is the baseline certification for the US National Security Agency’s ISSEP program.

An organization cannot be protected by technological solutions only; it has to have security professionals. These professionals will provide the organization a high standard of security to their customers, stake holders, employers and protect the organizational information. The Human Resource department in USA says that the security certification by CISSP is the biggest certification which one has, shows that he/she is qualified and can provide security to the organization competently than other certifications. The US department stating that is correct in its own terms. The certified professionals who have the CISSP certification need to have five year of experience in the IT industry to secure their certification.

What is CISSP?

If an individual who is looking for a job in IT industry mainly in the security systems, you should get CISSP certified. The course may sound expensive to some people, because it self funding course, but it will benefit you in your coming future. The people who are looking for security certification should go for CISSP. CISSP certification is considered as higher certification in comparison to other certifications.

The individual looking for getting CISSP certified should have five years of IT experience or four years of experience and a degree, in addition to this you have to score 70 percent in the test having 250 multiple choice questions. The question paper of CISSP consists of 250 questions with allotted time of 6 hours. The test shows that whosoever clears it learnt about the broad knowledge of security and earned a passing score in lengthy, intense and expensive paper.

Unlike many other certifications, CISSP focuses not only on security knowledge but keeps it updated about the other relevant topics. Because of this only CISSP is updated constantly to be relevant. If you wish to have this certification you need to be committed to study for it until and unless you want to waste away your hard earned money. The test is being taken by a lot of people, though being difficult, it can be achieved by hard work and dedication.

How to prepare

The learning ability differs from person to person. Some learn faster while some learn at their own pace. There are many learning camps that teach the various domains of CISSP. If you can join the camps you can, but in case you can’t, you can always study on your own. To prepare for the exam you need strong determination, dedication and approach towards the clearance of exam. The preparation of the exam comes with some choices. You have to choose the best for you among the available choices. The choices are

  • Instructor based training
  • Self study
  • Online training
  • Practice test papers

The choice of yours will depend on the experience and knowledge of yours, your financial status, and till when you want your certification.

  1. Instructor based training of CISSP: If you don’t have financial problem, you can go with this option and prepare. This is fast mode of preparation but definitely cost bit. The training will cost around $2000 to $3000 along with the expenses in travelling, if it is required. The training is for a week. This training can fasten your preparation, as the training being given by the industry professionals. So after attending 7 days of training you will gain vast amount of information that is needed for the exam. Some of the classes will teach you how to tackle tricky questions of CISSP.
  2. Self study: If you have ample time, there are enough materials available in the market. This will not cost you more; the material is in the form of books and whitepapers. The cost of the materials will be around $100 to $600. If you go for self study there are two books that are recommended, The CISSP Prep Guide by Ronald L.Krutz and Russell Dean Vines, and All in One CISSP Certification Exam Guide by Shon Harris and Gareth Hancock. Both the books have all that you need for the exam. Apart from these study online books and papers to prepare for the exam.
  3. Web based training: There are certain companies that provide web based training for the preparation of CISSP. These training programs will cost you around $1500 to $2500 and are three to eight weeks long. These training programs have a benefit; you can take these from where you want, according to your choice.
  4. Practice test papers: after you are through with your preparations, you should go for practice test papers. S this will help you check your level of preparation and your weak and strong points. You can also go for practice exam papers which will cost you around $5o to $400. You have to search for places where practice exam are conducted. Many of the books on CISSP have practice question along with them. According to the above options you can choose according to your requirement.

So however the way you prepare, the CISSP is a tough paper that requires extensive labor work and your commitment to attain the certification. Above all, if the paper was that easy, anybody could have achieved it. The certification is worth hard work and time it takes.


Related IT Guides

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  2. CISSP: How to earn CPEs?
  3. Eleventh Hour CISSP: What to do?
  4. How Much Can You Earn with CISSP Certification?
  5. How often CISSP exam format gets updated?
  6. How to become (ISC)2 associate?
  7. Is CISSP certification the Gold standard in the industry?

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