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The field of cyber security is growing quickly, with no predictions for that growth to wane. The need for qualified professionals is continuous, because of to the distressing rate of cybercrime.
Financial institutions, Internet sellers, even hospitals and all businesses that connect to the Internet are vulnerable to cybercrime. In fact, any person who has an email address or a social media account is at risk.
However, professionals should have relevant credentials to be attractive to employers. One of the best methods of reinforcing your existing skills and experience is to obtain cyber security certifications.
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Some professional certifications can help you secure an entry-level role, but most are designed career advancement. Take advantage of these opportunities to speed up you career in a strategic way.
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Certifications and Certificates – Are They the Same?
Even with their similar names, these are two very distinct types of credentials. If you’re looking around and encounter a certificate course, understand that this involves the completion of a program for a very particular end goal.
Students who want to gain advantage before entering a field can take certificate programs, which are condensed degree or diploma courses offered at community colleges, colleges and universities.
On the other hand, certifications are specialized credentials that professionals earn in a specialized area to show their expertise and skill set, and which often require passing an examination. Certification programs are mostly offered by professional associations and agencies, or by companies.
Certifications are also recognized in other disciplines, but what makes cyber security and other IT certifications different is their vendor specificity. However, as the quality and legitimacy of certification programs can vary, make sure you vet any program you’re seriously considering before you sign up.
So how long does a typical cyber security certification program take to finish? It all depends on the certification. Some need professionals to accumulate years of on-the-job experience to even be eligible for the certification. Others just need them to pass an examination.
Because certifications are organized around focused skills, it is always important to study, practice, and gain confidence with a different discipline prior to taking the final exam. Once eligible is earned, most certifications take a certain number of few months to complete.
Finally, part of the appeal that certifications have is simply that they are cheaper than an additional degree, and yet they make a significant addition to your resume. Cyber security certifications cost from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.
You may also need to pay for study and exam-prep materials. However, IT companies generally shoulder the cost of certifications as they also stand to benefit from their employees’ added knowledge and skills.