written by: Steve Mallard•edited by: Bill Bunter•updated: 7/6/2011
Current information technology professionals should as a minimum be required to study and pass CompTIA's Security+ certification. CompTIA's Security+ certification is one of today's most valuable certifications in information technology.
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The Demand for Certification
Many businesses and organizations today require their employees to continue their education in their job field in order to keep up with technological changes. Information security changes on a daily basis and it is of the utmost importance for information technology professionals to keep up with security technology.
Businesses today often require CompTIA's Security+ certification as a way of showing the IT professional is trained and has the knowledge and skills that meet information security needs. These skills include not only the computer's security but should include the entire network security.
Security positions are now considered a critical and integral part of the information technology team.
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The Department of Defense and Security+
With the Department of Defense Directive 8570.1 requiring more than 100,000 information assurance professionals to be certified within the next five years, this certification is recognized as one of the certifications that meet the aforesaid standard. The Department of Defense alone will certify more than 400,000 information assurance professionals. This certification for the DoD alone covers those personnel in military and contract positions in these positions.
Many compaines today are requiring this certification to meet internal audits and compliance standards. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) has been in effect for several years and this certification helps employers maintain standards that keep patient information safe. The banking industry and ecommerce sites using credit cards fall under the PCI Data Security Standards. These are just a few industries that require security standards.
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CompTIA Security+ Certification
CompTIA's Security+ is one of the premiere certifications offered by CompTIA. This vendor neutral certification recommends the information technology security professional have two years experience in network administration and maintenance. This exam is an internationally recognized security certification.
This exam helps to measure an individuals knowledge of network infrastructure, access control, audits, organizational security, computer systems security and many more areas where security is essential and necessary in today's world.
CompTIA offers security videos and information on the Security+ exam including the objectives needed to meet the exam's standard. The Security+ exam consist of 100 questions. CompTIA requires a minimum score of 764 (scale 100 -900) and gives candidates an hour and a half to take the exam.
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Conclusion and Value of the Certification
As an information technology professional with over 25 years experience in information technology, the certification has value if the individual gaining the certification has the hands on experience and has truly studied for the exam. Individuals holding the certification who have studied and again truly earned this valuable certification is valuable to organizations. These individuals require less training and are more familiar with the terminology used in information security. Microsoft recognizes this certification. This certification can be applied towards a Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator. Because of the number of vulnerabilities found in ALL software and across networks, individuals currently employed as part of your information technology or systems team should earn this valuable certification and require security training on a scheduled basis.