Cybersecurity threats from hackers are on the rise and are terrifying for every industry in this digital age. We hear about data breaches all the time, right? Cybersecurity and ethical hacking are among the fastest-growing segments of the information technology industry. A certified ethical hacker can identify cybersecurity gaps and weaknesses in a business’s workplace that might expose sensitive information.
This role will experience an increase in demand with the growing demand for information security professionals. An ethical hacking certification can help you advance in your career if you wish to start your career in this field. Nevertheless, You might wonder what ethical hacking entails and which is the best ethical hacking certification.
Therefore, this article will shed some light on the fundamentals of ethical hacking and highlight some of the top ethical hacking certifications. Let’s dive in.
What is Ethical Hacking?
Ethical hacking means trying to breach a system’s or network’s security with permission to assess its security. As a preventative measure, this procedure ensures that systems are safe from flaws that could lead to an attack. Ethical hacking also goes by the names authorized hacking and penetration testing.
Who is an Ethical Hacker?
The purpose of ethical hackers is not to harm or commit crimes but rather to inspect or evaluate the security of a system or network. They are also referred to as “white hat hackers” because they employ hacking methods ethically and legally. Hackers who use the hacking process negatively, like phishing and scamming, are known as black hat hackers.
The main difference between a hacker and an ethical hacker is one protects the security; the other evades it. Competent, ethical hackers can perform hacking tricks since they know how to protect data and information.
Most skilled, ethical hackers know how malevolent hackers think, act, and use hacking tools. These hackers typically gain access to operating systems through phishing scams or social engineering.
What is the Role of An Ethical Hacker?
The following is a list of some of the responsibilities of an ethical hacker.
- An ethical hacker scans ports for vulnerabilities first.
- Ethical hackers also ensure patch settings are not exploitable due to the possibility of using social engineering techniques for attacks.
- The ethical hacker is responsible for preventing issues like employee fraud and device theft.
- Additionally, ethical hackers can hack wireless encryption and take over web servers and applications.
What Does an Ethical Hacking Certification Entail?
The certification requires one to assess the security of computer systems using penetration testing techniques. Certifications like this one can lead one to become an ethical hacker. The program helps you develop the ability to think like a hacker. The advantages of completing an ethical hacking course and earning certification are numerous.
The following are some of the benefits of having an ethical hacking certification:
In this lesson, you’ll know the tools you need to hack ethically. There will be no more preconceived notions about hacking. Following this certification, you will understand the basic elements of a white hacker’s profession.
You will better understand the daily threats and weaknesses facing companies through certification. Therefore, you can help an organization figure out how to mitigate these threats, helping them improve their cybersecurity.
With this certification, you’ll learn about footprinting, defenses, and vulnerability deduction. Furthermore, you’ll learn about packet sniffing methods and how to prevent them.
Additionally, you will learn that hacking entails more than just gaining access to someone else’s email or Facebook account.
Your knowledge of computer worms, encryption, steganography, concealing tracks, virus analysis, how viruses work, and countermeasures will increase. Furthermore, you will be exposed to systemic hacking and hijacking techniques.
You will gain knowledge about network enumeration and scanning with ethical hacking certification. It will also include information about how to prevent these attacks. An ethical hacker certification will give you a better understanding of Trojan and virus software analysis.
The last step is to learn how cyberattacks develop. You will discover how hackers find vulnerabilities in any system to prevent the system from functioning properly.
Top Ethical Hacking Courses & Certifications
We have listed some renowned ethical hacking certifications below. Let’s explore.
Certified Ethical Hacking Certification (CEH)
The CEH program is one of the earliest and most well-known certification programs available to ethical hackers.
After completing this course and getting a certificate, you can become an ethical hacker. Furthermore, the certified person will be able to analyze target systems for weaknesses and vulnerabilities. Their goal is to assess the security posture of a target system using the same tools and knowledge malicious hackers use legitimately.
The CEH qualification verifies a person’s ability to perform responsibilities associated with ethical hacking from a vendor-neutral point of view. Additionally, it suggests ethical hacking is a niche profession with self-regulation.
This course will teach you how to adopt the mindset of a hacker. By taking this course, you will experience a controlled, practical environment with a systematic approach.
You will be introduced to a unique way to achieve the best possible information security posture. With this ethical hacking certification program, you will learn about the aspects mentioned above hacking.
This course teaches you how to apply ethical hacking techniques to penetration testing and ethical hacking scenarios. Obtaining this globally recognized certification entails gaining current and in-demand ethical hacking skills. Experts who possess this certification can earn up to $92000 per year.
OSCP Penetration Testing Certification
In the field of ethical hacking certification, OSCP has already earned a solid reputation for robustness despite being only a few years old. This program offers advanced pen testing courses and examinations, like web penetration testing, wireless penetration testing, and Windows exploit training. An exam and practical training are included in the program.
The OSCP shows students how to apply penetration testing methodology and life cycle in a practical, accurate, precise, and clear manner. This certification shows the ability to identify vulnerabilities, modify exploit code, exploit hosts, and complete tasks on compromised systems. The earning potential of a professional with this certification is up to $96000 annually.
Numerous countries, including Australia, the UK, Asia, and Europe, recognize this course and ethical hacking certification program. Taking this test will assist in certifying and educating competent pen testers. It’s a non-profit that helps a technical information security market that needs organized and controlled services. The global technical cyber security industry benefits from the high-quality capability, capacity, and consistency that CREST helps to establish.
CREST aids in the establishment of excellent capability, infrastructure, and consistency for the global technical cyber security industry. Collaborating and exchanging best practices and expertise is crucial to reducing cyber-attack risks.
Furthermore, it’s crucial to put in place progressive initiatives that help industry experts get and keep the knowledge they need to survive and thrive. CREST provides a focal point for best practice and professional improvement through its collaborative research efforts. This certification could earn a professional an annual salary of $80000.
GIAC Penetration Tester (GPEN)
Global Information Assurance Certification (GIAC) offers GIAC Penetration Tester (GPEN) certification. This ethical hacking certification confirms that applicants possess the necessary knowledge and skills to perform penetration testing on network systems.
GPEN tests both ethical hacking techniques and fundamental security concepts. You’ll also find info on reporting your results and handling legal matters. SANS Institute and GAIC partnered to offer ethical hacking certificates for cloud settings and cloud security.
It mostly discusses in-depth technical techniques to verifying from reporting and scoping onward. This course covers the following topics:
- Attacking sophisticated password threats
- Password hashes, exploitation basics
- Initial target scanning
- Security vulnerabilities scanning
- Pen-testing fundamentals
- Transferring files with exploits
- Network monitoring through, etc.
A few objectives of the GPEN course include exploitation of web applications, reconnaissance, and penetration testing using PowerShell and the Windows command line. An IT professional with this certification can earn up to $104,000 a year.
Found-Stone Ultimate Hacking Certification
The practical penetration technique course is in line with the Found-Stone Ultimate Hacking certification. Furthermore, Foundstone offers forensic and incident response training and instructions on how to hack RFID, firmware, Bluetooth, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
By completing this ethical hacking certification, you’ll learn how hackers analyze and create attack vectors aimed at your most valuable assets. Therefore, you can cultivate the policy behind discovering flaws before they become a problem.
Additionally, you’ll discover how to use hacker tools and techniques in a safe and regulated setting. This ethical hacking certification will teach you how to market your security toolkit using resources that have already been tested.
Certified Information System Auditor (CISA)
For this ethical hacking certification, you must have five years of experience working as a system auditor and a solid understanding of security controls. ISACA provides this certification as a part of its program. Candidates for the CISA certification must demonstrate their knowledge and abilities in security and risk management. CISA professionals earn an average salary of approximately $102,856 annually.
Certified Information System Security Professional ( CISSP)
Information security is the focus of the CISSP ethical hacking certification, which is more advanced. The certification program teaches professionals how to create, direct, and oversee security policies, procedures, and standards. IT pros with expertise in at least two of the (ISC)2 appropriate knowledge domains are eligible for this certification. The average annual salary for CISSP certification holders is $119,000.
Certified Penetrating Testing Consultant (CPTC Certification)
The CPTC certification in ethical hacking is essential to become a computer security professional. With this certification, you can learn about security controls like physical and user security and in-depth penetration testing. This certification will provide you with an understanding of the penetration testing industry. The annual salary for a professional with this certification can reach $72000.
Certified Information Security Manager ( CISM)
Candidates for the CISM need to deeply understand topics related to business information security. Management professionals or IT advisors who help with information security programs are the best candidates for this ethical hacking certification.
This ethical hacker certification requires at least three years of experience in information security management. Those who don’t have any academic or work experience in information security management can also attend training programs. In general, CISM certificate holders can expect to earn around $131,209 per year.
Certified Penetration Testing Engineer (CPTE Certification)
CPTE ethical hacking certification shows you’re knowledgeable about and skilled at five essential elements of information security.
- Penetration testing
- Data gathering
- Compilation of reports
Furthermore, the CPTE program teaches you how to hack a system and how to hack ethically. This certification is recognized worldwide as one of the five fundamental qualifications for cyber security. This certification holder earns an average annual salary of $81891.
Can You Be An Ethical Hacker?
For people who have investigative or intrusion experience, security experience, or want to fill these roles. Understanding computer programming and networking is essential to becoming an ethical hacker.
Programming and networking are high-end technical skills that open the door to many career opportunities. Moreover, you can contribute to the community by pursuing an ethical hacking career. The above-mentioned ethical hacking certifications can help you to become a certified ethical hacker.
The Key Factors of Ethical Hacking
Usually, companies hire ethical hackers to find vulnerabilities in their systems. By doing this, the business can figure out what safeguards to adopt. Here are the five stages of ethical hacking:
- Obtaining entrance/access
- Upholding access
- Track coverage
- Wage Earnings of An Ethical Hacker
According to the different categories, here is an estimate of a security expert and a certified ethical hacker’s salary per year. The list includes:
- A CEH (certified ethical hacker)would earn $74,457
- Security analysts can earn $36,817
- An ethical hacker would get $10,80,000
- Security consultants can earn $77,869
- An information security analyst would earn $30,429
It concludes today’s roundup of everything you need to know about ethical hacking and the top ethical hacking certifications. Among the most sought-after skills of today is ethical hacking. The government and private businesses frequently collaborate with ethical hackers to find and fix cybersecurity vulnerabilities.
As a result of the recent wave of cyberattacks worldwide, ethical hacking has become more important in disaster management and crisis management. In the future, you might get a successful and fulfilling career with the right ethical hacking certification.
Hope this article helped you gain some insights into ethical hacking and the top ethical hacking certifications that you need. Moreover, the above certification list will assist you in choosing the best certification for your needs.