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CISSP - Cybersecurity Certification: Comprehensive Guide

Published on Fri 5, 2021
CISSP - Cybersecurity Certification: Comprehensive Guide


This blog covers the following questions related to CISSP accredited by (ISC)²:

  1. What is CISSP?
  2. Why is Cybersecurity critical?
  3. Who should do CISSP?
  4. What are the requirements of CISSP Certification?
  5. How to get CISSP Certification?
  6. What is the cost of the CISSP exam?
  7. What are the job opportunities for CISSP in 2021?
  8. What are the skills developed after getting CISSP Certified?
  9. What are the benefits of getting CISSP Certified?
  10. What is the average annual salary of professionals with CISSP Certification?

What is CISSP?

Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) is an esteemed certification in Information Security accredited by the prestigious  International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium (ISC)². The globally recognized CISSP certification validates the knowledge in designing, implementing, and managing the best practice of cybersecurity and hands-on experience in highly secure business environments.

According to (ISC)², as of a recent update, i.e., Jan-1-2021, there are 147,591 CISSP certification holders worldwide. The United States holds the highest number of 92,938 CISSP certification holders. Cybersecurity professionals are in high demand due to the never-ending cyber-attacks and skill gap. Many organizations demand a qualified and skilled professional to avoid data breaches in their organization.

Why is Cybersecurity critical?

The global pandemic has spared none! Though the emergence of remote working has helped the organizations to maintain continuity, there was a considerable increase in cyber-attacks and data breaching. As a result, Cybersecurity is of utmost importance to avoid significant cyber-attacks. To validate the above point, let us consider a few data published during the 2020 global pandemic.

  • According to Gartner, 52% of legal and compliance leaders are concerned about third-party cyber risks due to remote work since COVID-19.
  • According to IMC Groupo, The FBI’s IC3 and Google report a significant jump in the number of reported cybercrimes. FBI Reports a 300% Increase, and Google is now blocking an average of over 18 million daily malware — along with 240 million daily spam messages.
  • According to Fintech news, 27% of COVID-19 cyberattacks targeted banks and healthcare organizations, and COVID-19 is credited for a 238% rise in cyberattacks on banks in 2020.
  • The data breaches increased to 58% in the healthcare industry during 2020.

Considering the above statistics, there is a considerable demand for the cybersecurity industry and cybersecurity professionals. With the rise in cloud services, smartphones, and the Internet of Things, and emerging technology trends, cyber threats have increased.

The cybersecurity involves protection of:

  • Personally identifiable information (PII)
  • Protected health information (PHI)
  • Personal information
  • Intellectual-property data
  • Governmental and industry information

Who should do CISSP?

The CISSP is suitable for security practitioners, data security managers, and professionals working in the field of cybersecurity as following professionals:

  • Chief Information Security Officer
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Director of Security
  • IT Director/Manager
  • Security Systems Engineer
  • Security Analyst
  • Security Manager
  • Security Auditor
  • Security Architect
  • Security Consultant
  • Network Architect

What are the requirements of CISSP Certification?

As mentioned in (ISC)², CISSP is an advanced level certification and has many prerequisites:

  • Candidate must have a minimum of 5 years of work experience in two or more domains mentioned below:
    • Domain 1. Security and Risk Management
    • Domain 2. Asset Security
    • Domain 3. Security Architecture and Engineering
    • Domain 4. Communication and Network Security
    • Domain 5. Identity and Access Management (IAM)
    • Domain 6. Security Assessment and Testing
    • Domain 7. Security Operations
    • Domain 8. Software Development Security
  • Four-Year College Degree or Regional Equivalent
  • Work experience can be reduced to 4 years if the candidate holds a four-year college degree or regional equivalent or an advanced degree in information security from the U.S. National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education (CAE/IAE).
  • The candidate can also reduce one-year work experience if the candidate holds at least one approved credential on (ISC)² approved list of primary level and the managerial level certifications like,
    • Certified Information Security Manager (CISM)
    • Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)
    • Certified Authorization Professional (CAP)
    • Certified Business Continuity Professional
    • Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP)
    • Certified Computer Examiner (CCE)
    • Certified Cyber Forensics Professional (CCFP)
    • Certified Ethical Hacker v8 or higher
    • Certified Forensic Computer Examiner (CFCE)
    • Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) etc.
  • A candidate can also attempt the CISSP exam even without experience. In that case, they obtain Associate of (ISC)2 certification and can get the CISSP tag once they gain the experience. The Associate of (ISC)2 will then have six years to earn the five years required experience.

How to get CISSP Certification?

The steps involved in getting CISSP certification is:

  • Once you meet the requirements mentioned above, understand the format of the CISSP exam. There are two separate tests for the English language and other languages.
  • CISSP CAT (Computerized Adaptive Testing)- English
  • CISSP Linear Examination - French, German, Brazilian Portuguese, Spanish-Modern, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Korean

CISSP CAT Examination Format:

Duration: 3 hours

Number of questions: 100-150

Question format: Multiple choice and advanced innovative items

Passing Grade: 700 out of 1000 points

Testing center: (ISC)2 Authorized PPC and PVTC Select Pearson VUE Testing Centers.

CISSP Linear Examination Format:

Duration: 6 hours

Number of questions: 250

Question format: Multiple choice and advanced innovative items

Passing Grade: 700 out of 1000 points

Testing center: ((ISC)2 Authorized PPC and PVTC Select Pearson VUE Testing Centers

  • After understanding the examination format, get the training from a reputed training organization to get the proper guidance to clear the exam on the first attempt.
  • Create Pearson VUE account for testing locations, policies, accommodation, etc.   
  • Register with  (ISC)2 by  completing the examination agreement
  • Pay the examination fee.
  • Take the exam
  • Take Your (ISC)² Code of Ethics Subscription to avail of the certification.
  • Get endorsed by asking active (ISC)2 credential holders to attest to your industry experience to complete an endorsement form for you.
  • Be prepared for Audit.

What is the cost of the CISSP exam?

The cost of CISSP standard registration in the different regions are mentioned below:



United States


United Kingdom

GBP 560


EUR 650

Middle East

The U.S. $699


The U.S. $699


  1. Exam: U.S. $50/35£/40€
  2. Exam: U.S. $100/70£/80€

What are the benefits of getting CISSP Certified?

There are many benefits as CISSP is one of the highest-paid and most sought certifications for professionals working in the field of Information Security. To name a few,

  • Global recognition
  • Validates your technical knowledge and skills to develop best practices in information security.
  • Adds credibility as a security expert
  • Wider job opportunities
  • Higher pay
  • Enhanced productivity
  • Hands-on cybersecurity experience
  • Join the global network with a membership of (ISC)²

What are the job opportunities for CISSP in 2021?

The role of cybersecurity professionals is to prevent cyberattacks and understand the cause of the attack. The leading causes of cyberattacks and data breaching are:

  • Weak and Stolen Credentials
  • Back Doors, Application Vulnerabilities
  • Malware
  • Social Engineering
  • Too Many Permissions
  • Insider Threats
  • Improper Configuration and User Error

There is a huge demand for cybersecurity professionals, as mentioned earlier. Many researchers stated about the job opportunities as discussed below:

According to the CSO Online,

The cybersecurity unemployment rate is 0% and is projected to remain there through 2021.

There is an ocean of opportunity for cybersecurity professionals in the U.S, as per the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Information Security Analysts job positions in the US are expected to grow 31% from 2019–29

Cybersecurity engineers are some of the highest-paid positions, starting at $140K annually on average, and there was a 350 percent growth in open cybersecurity positions from 2013 to 2021.

61% of companies think their cybersecurity applicants aren’t qualified

With all the statistics mentioned above, there is a huge demand for cybersecurity professionals.

What are the skills developed after getting CISSP Certified?

CISSP is an advanced level certification for cybersecurity professionals. Most of the skill is developed with different topics as mentioned below:

  • Access controls system and methodology.
  • Systems and application security development
  • Cryptography
  • Disaster recovery and business continuity plans
  • Investigation laws and ethics
  • Security models and architectures
  • Physical security
  • Best management practices
  • Networking and telecommunications security
  • Operations security

What is the average annual salary of professionals with CISSP Certification?

According to, the average annual salary of cybersecurity professionals with CISSP certifications are:


CISSP certification is the most sought-after certification in the field of cybersecurity. With immense importance and opportunities, there is a considerable demand for CISSP professionals. Get CISSP certification training from Certification Planner to get the best training from professional trainers.

Reach out to us at or +1 8553221201 if you want to discover more about your training options. Happy Learning!

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