ccsp, isc2, cloud computing, cloud security, new it certification exam

Coming Soon: Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) Cert From (ISC)²

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  • May 6, 2015
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ccsp, isc2, cloud computing, cloud security, new it certification examIf you’re looking for a new glowing certification in cloud computing/ cloud security that would really make a difference to your career – it’s coming! The new credential from (ISC)², the provider of the CISSP (one of the best paid IT certifications in the world) has just announced a new certification: The Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP)! The CCSP exam will be available this summer at PearsonVUE testing centers worldwide!

Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP): What We Know So Far

The Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) certification was announced Tuesday at the RSA Conference in San Francisco by partners (ISC)² and Cloud Security Alliance. (ISC)², a leading industry group, is curator of the widely respected CISSP certification for career information security professionals. The credential would be a perfect fit for Enterprise Architects, Security Administrators, Systems Engineers, Security Architects, Security Consultants, Security Engineers, Security Managers, Systems Architects etc.

The perfect CCSP candidate would have at least 5 years of IT experience, at least 3 of which are in IT security, and at least one – in cloud computing. The new CCSP certification exam will cover the following domains:

  • Architectural Concepts & Design Requirements
  • Cloud Data Security
  • Cloud Platform and Infrastructure Security
  • Cloud Application Security
  • Operations
  • Legal & Compliance

According to the recent press release the CCSP Exam will be 4 hours long and will consist of 125 multiple-choice queries. To pass, candidates need to achieve 70% of correct keys, or 700 out of 1000 points.

The CCSP training courses will also be launched this summer (June-July). At the moment, potential CCSP exam candidates can download the official exam outline from the (ISC)² website. It breaks down the 6 domains listed above, which might be useful for those looking to jump start their preparation.

Maintaining the CCSP

The CCSP credential will be valid for 3 years. During this time, all holders must pay Annual Maintenance Fees (AMFs) of US$100 per year, earn 90 CPEs, with a minimum of 30 each year. Associates of (ISC)² working toward the CCSP must pay US$35 AMFs and earn 15 CPEs each year.

As part of (ISC)²’s and CSA’s collaboration, CCSP and other (ISC)² credential holders can utilize CSA’s education and training, research projects, events, working groups and other programs to stay abreast of cloud security best practices while helping to satisfy their CPE requirements.

How does CCSP compare with CCSK?

Since there is a bunch of other cloud security certifications out there, many people wonder how they compare. It is especially interesting to see how the new CCSP compares with CCSK (CSA’s Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge).

As (ISC)² puts it on its official website, the CCSK examination tests across a broad foundation of cloud security knowledge. The CCSK body of knowledge includes 14 domains and covers some unique and critical areas of knowledge, such as Security as a Service, which are not covered in other credentials. CCSK also covers the CSA Cloud Controls Matrix, the industry standard security controls framework, which is a requirement for the CSA Security, Trust and Assurance Registry (STAR) program of cloud provider certification. CCSK provides an excellent indicator of baseline cloud security knowledge appropriate for almost any IT position. The knowledge reflected by the CCSK certification program helps employers ensure their teams are better equipped to cope with the increasingly pervasive cloud computing issues they now face.

The CCSP credential builds upon many of the areas covered by CCSK in order to provide deeper knowledge derived from hands-on information security and cloud computing experience. It validates practical know-how applicable to those professionals whose day-to-day responsibilities involve cloud security architecture, design, operations, and service orchestration. As an advanced professional credential, CCSP also reflects more than the knowledge needed to pass an exam. It includes: a) exam and testing meeting ANSI requirements; b) legal commitment to code of ethics; c) endorsement from appropriate certified professionals; and d) commitment to continuing professional education – all of which demonstrate that CCSPs are qualified and committed to tackling the cloud security challenges of today and tomorrow.

While there are other cloud-related certifications available, most are vendor-specific and relate to vendor technology and solutions. Those that include information security, do so nominally at a theoretical level. Both CCSP and CCSK are vendor-neutral and reflect overall industry best practices for securing cloud environments.

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