Hi Ed,

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have an extensive background in electronics, Crypto and networking (22 yrs). I completed the MCSE (NT4) two years back and then assumed a position with Nortel that required networking knowledge but not extensively. I have just recently assumed a position as a contractor for the government, which involves installing and configuring Crypto. I now find myself trying to determine the best path to take in regards to certs. Since I have a S-clearance I was thinking of staying with the MCSE with a security specialty and perhaps concurrently study for the CISSP Cert. Your thoughts?
Given your background and years of experience, your plan to pursue the CISSP is a good one. But given that Microsoft has hinted - if not yet announced outright - that it plans to release one or more security certs next year, you may want to wait to see what happens in mid- to late 2003 to decide what Microsoft direction to follow. OTOH, if you're set on the MCSE, you certainly have the background and skills necessary to pursue one.

Given that you've completed the NT4 MCSE, it's too bad you didn't or weren't able to take advantage of the omnibus 70-240 exam which is now no longer available.

You should also check out the more senior and prestigious CPP program at http://www.asisonline.org/cppg/cpphome.html as well; you have sufficient experience to qualify, and it could also help to boost your career standing.
Good luck!

This was first published in August 2002

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