Information security is an increasingly critical field, and the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification is a globally recognized standard for professionals in the industry. Holding a CISSP demonstrates deep knowledge across multiple domains of information security, as well as skills and expertise in building, implementing, and managing effective security programs within organizations. Due to the increasing demand for qualified cyber-security professionals, obtaining a CISSP certification is an excellent investment for anyone looking to advance their career prospects.
In this article, we’ll explore the costs associated with earning your CISSP credential so that you can make informed decisions about your professional development goals.
What is the CISSP training Cost?
The first step to becoming CISSP certified is completing a training program that covers the certification’s eight domains, known as the Common Body of Knowledge (CBK). The cost of CISSP training can vary depending on the training provider, course format, and location. The average cost of CISSP training is $749.
If you’re interested in becoming a certified information systems security professional (CISSP), there are several training formats available to meet your unique learning preferences and schedule. Whether you prefer a traditional classroom-style setting, an online program that allows for self-paced learning, or something in between, there is an option that can work for you. With multiple formats to choose from, you have the flexibility to select the best CISSP certification path that fits your lifestyle and educational goals. These include
- Classroom-based training
- Online instructor-led training
- Online self-paced training
- Private on-site training
Each format has its unique advantages and limitations, with classroom-based and online instructor-led training typically having higher fees due to the involvement of live instructors. Online self-paced training may be more affordable since it consists of pre-recorded content.
Classroom-based CISSP training
Online instructor-led CISSP training
Online self-paced CISSP training
Private on-site CISSP training
CISSP Certification Exam Cost
In addition to the training costs, candidates must also pay the CISSP exam fee, which is approximately USD 749. The exam is administered by (ISC)², the organization responsible for CISSP certification. It is essential to note that the exam fee is separate from the training fee and must be paid directly to (ISC)² when registering for the exam.
Additional CISSP Study Material Costs
To supplement their CISSP certification exam preparation, candidates may choose to invest in additional study materials. These resources can enhance the core training program by providing extra opportunities for practice, filling knowledge gaps, and reinforcing learning. The costs associated with these materials vary depending on the type of resource and its source. However, investing in them will ultimately help ensure that candidates feel fully prepared and confident going into their exams, increasing their chances of success.
Some examples of CISSP study materials cost include:
Before investing in additional study materials, it’s essential to consider your learning preferences, study habits, and budget. Evaluate the resources included in your core CISSP training program, and determine if supplementary materials are necessary for your success. By carefully selecting the right combination of study materials, you can optimize your CISSP exam preparation and increase your chances of achieving certification.
- Textbooks: Comprehensive CISSP exam guides and textbooks provide in-depth coverage of the certification’s eight domains, offering detailed explanations, examples, and real-world scenarios. These books can serve as excellent reference materials and can range in price from USD 50 to USD 100 or more.
- Practice exams: CISSP Practice exams are essential for assessing your knowledge and understanding of the CISSP certification content. They help identify areas that may need further study and familiarize you with the exam format and question types. Practice exams can be purchased from various sources, including (ISC)², textbook publishers, and third-party providers, with prices ranging from USD 30 to USD 150 or more.
- Video lectures and tutorials: Some candidates may find CISSP video lectures and tutorials beneficial for reinforcing CISSP concepts and clarifying complex topics. These resources are often available through online platforms, with prices varying based on the provider, course content, and duration.
- Study apps and flashcards: Study apps and flashcards can help you review and memorize key CISSP concepts, terms, and definitions. These resources are available in both digital and physical formats and can range in price from free to USD 50 or more, depending on the source and content quality.
- Online forums and study groups: Engaging with CISSP online forums and CISSP study groups can be an effective way to exchange knowledge, ask questions, and share study tips with other CISSP candidates. While many of these online communities are free, some may charge a membership fee or offer premium resources at an additional cost.
CISSP Annual Maintenance Cost
Once you have successfully obtained your CISSP certification, there are ongoing costs to maintain it. CISSP certified professionals are required to pay an annual maintenance fee (AMF) to (ISC)². The AMF for CISSP holders is USD 125 per year. This fee supports the ongoing administration of the certification program and helps ensure the CISSP remains a highly respected and valued credential within the information security industry.
In addition to the annual maintenance fee, CISSP professionals must also earn Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits to maintain their certification. A total of 120 CPE credits are required within a three-year certification cycle, with a minimum of 20 CPE credits earned each year. The cost of earning CPE credits can vary, as they can be obtained through various activities such as attending conferences, webinars, training courses, or completing self-study programs. Some of these activities may be free, while others may require payment.
CISSP Certification Retake Fees
In the event a candidate fails the CISSP exam on their first attempt, they will have to pay a retake fee to (ISC)². The retake fee for the CISSP exam is USD 599. Candidates must wait a minimum of 30 days before retaking the exam after their first unsuccessful attempt. After the second unsuccessful attempt, candidates must wait 90 days before retaking the exam. If a candidate fails the exam three times within a calendar year, they must wait 180 days before attempting it again.
Is the CISSP Certification Worth the Cost?
With the various costs associated with obtaining and maintaining the CISSP certification, it is crucial to consider whether the investment is worthwhile. The CISSP certification offers several benefits to professionals in the information security field, including:
- Enhanced Credibility: CISSP certification demonstrates a strong commitment to the information security profession and validates a candidate’s knowledge and expertise in the field.
- Increased Earning Potential: CISSP certified professionals often command higher salaries than their non-certified counterparts, as the certification is widely recognized and respected by employers.
- Expanded Career Opportunities: With the growing demand for skilled information security professionals, CISSP certification can help open up new job opportunities and provide a competitive advantage in the job market.
- Networking Opportunities: CISSP certified professionals become part of a global community of like-minded professionals, providing valuable networking and knowledge-sharing opportunities.
- Commitment to Continuous Learning: The CISSP certification requires ongoing professional development, ensuring certified professionals stay current with the latest trends and best practices in information security.
Considering the benefits of the CISSP certification, many professionals find the costs associated with obtaining and maintaining the certification to be a worthwhile investment. However, it is essential to carefully evaluate your career goals, financial resources, and learning preferences before committing to the certification process.
The CISSP certification is a valuable credential for professionals in the information security field, offering numerous benefits such as enhanced credibility, increased earning potential, and expanded career opportunities. However, obtaining the CISSP certification does come with various costs, including training fees, exam fees, study materials, annual maintenance fees, and CPE requirements. By carefully considering these costs and weighing them against the potential benefits, candidates can make an informed decision on whether pursuing the CISSP certification is the right choice for their career aspirations and personal growth in the information security industry.