Q

Most valuable security certifications

In the field of computer security, there are new certifications popping up all over the place. It used to be that there were two certifications CISSP and CISA. Now SANS, Truesecure, and a host of other companies have started their own - and in some case multiple certifications. If you read the marketing claims of each vendor/organization, their certification is the best and most important. Can you help us understand which certifications carry the most weight in the industry and which specialized certifications might be most appropriate?
The CISSP is still the security certification most often requested by name in job postings and classified ads. That said, the SANS program is coming on strong and gaining lots of mind- and marketshare; it's still a little too soon to tell how well or widely the Trusecure/ICSA programs are going to be accepted, but I expect great things from them because of their name recognition and savvy appreciation of the mass market (of all the certs mentioned so far in my e-mail, they're the only ones who offer cert testing through a major testing outlet--Prometric Testing in this case). The CISSP is still the security certification most often requested by name in job postings and classified ads. That said, the SANS program is coming on strong and gaining lots of mind- and marketshare; it's still a little too soon to tell how well or widely the Trusecure/ICSA programs are going to be accepted, but I expect great things from them because of their name recognition and savvy appreciation of the mass market (of all the certs mentioned so far in my e-mail, they're the only ones who offer cert testing through a major testing outlet--Prometric Testing in this case).
As for specialized certifications, you should let your interest in specific vendors and your sense of where the best job opportunities are guide your selections. If in doubt, talk to some headhunters; at least, they'll be able to tell you where demand for specialties is hottest right now, if not two or 3 years from now. As for specialized certifications, you should let your interest in specific vendors and your sense of where the best job opportunities are guide your selections. If in doubt, talk to some headhunters; at least, they'll be able to tell you where demand for specialties is hottest right now, if not two or 3 years from now.
This was first published in February 2002

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