Earlier this week, Cisco announced some changes to its information security certification lineup. They’ve even put together a landing page entitled “Security Certification Program Redesign,” that features a video from John N. Stewart, Cisco’s CSO and Senior VP, who explains why Cisco is adding to and expanding its security certification, curriculum, and coverage. He talks about upcoming opportunities in the information security area, especially for qualified IT professionals who have worthwhile credentials to demonstrate their security skills and knowledge. The gist of his message is that Cisco is committed to both security products and platforms and to training to make sure that IT professionals understand information security, and how to put relevant products and platforms to work.
Cisco mounts a full-court press on infosec training and certification, along with a revamped CCNP Security and a new Cybersecurity Specialist cert.
You’ll find pointers to all the details on the afore-linked landing page, including:
- A link to the CCNP Security home page, along with another link explaining the exams migration path from the old regime to the new and updated one (this PDF chart provides a succinct visual that explains things pretty clearly, though, so if you’re in that particular boat this should be your first stopping off point). The extremely brief rendition is that various options in the required areas will be retiring on either April 21, 2014 (642-637, 642-627, 642-618, and 642-648) or on December 31, 2014 (641-502/3/4, 642-532/3, 642-522/3/4, and 642-515), with a new slate of exams to replace them (300-208, 300-207, 300-206, and 300-209). There’s even a link to the Cisco Learning Network Store’s CCNP Security Training page, which lists all of the various course offerings (including a coupon code for free access to the first module, and a 10%-off code for a subscription to Cisco’s entire online learning library).
- A link to the new Cybersecurity Specialist home page which takes a CCNA Security or any valid CCIE as a pre-requisite, and requires passing exam 600-199 SCYBER “Securing Cisco Networks with Threat Detection and Analysis.” This credential focuses on topics related to event monitoring, analysis of security events, alarms, and traffic analysis, plus incident response concepts, processes, and best practices.
Cisco is apparently ready, willing and even eager to help companies and organization address a looming shortage of infosec-savvy IT professionals with training and certification offerings. And indeed, most analyst firms and infosec professional organizations foresee the same shortage, and all players are no doubt anticipating an upsurge in activity (and certifications granted) to help meet those needs, Cisco among them.