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GCFA Certification

GCFA Certification Program: What Skills You Will Learn

Mar 25, 20235 mins readAmit Masih
GCFA Certification Program: What Skills You Will Learn

Today, with the number of cyberattacks and malicious hackers increasing, organizations are looking for professionals who can protect their sensitive data from such threats. 

If you're interested in digital security, consider earning the GIAC GCFA certification to build a strong foundation when hunting for jobs. With the GCFA certification, you will gain skills and knowledge in digital forensics, incident response, malware analysis, network forensics, and cyber threat intelligence.

However, what exactly will you learn from the GIAC GCFA certification program? In this blog post, we'll take a look at the top skills that you'll gain during the GCFA certification program.

What is the GIAC Certified Forensic Analyst (GCFA) certification?

The GIAC Certified Forensic Analyst (GCFA), offered by GIAC, is a vendor-neutral certification validating an individual's knowledge and skills in digital forensics and incident response. It demonstrates the ability to conduct forensic investigations, analyze digital evidence, and develop and implement effective incident response strategies. 

To earn the GIAC GCFA certification, candidates must pass a proctored exam covering digital forensics and incident response, evidence acquisition and analysis, file system forensics, memory forensics, and network forensics. 

The GIAC GCFA certification exam consists of 82 multiple-choice questions. The exam duration is three hours long. To earn the GCFA certification, you must score at least 71% or higher. The GCFA certification is ideal for incident response team members, threat hunters, SOC analysts, experienced digital forensic analysts, information security professionals, penetration testers, and exploit developers. 

Here are the areas covered in the GCFA certification exam:

  • Advanced Incident Response and Digital Forensics
  • Memory Forensics, Timeline Analysis, and Anti-Forensics Detection

Who can take the GIAC GCFA certification exam?

  • Incident Response Team Members
  • Threat Hunters
  • SOC Analysts
  • Experienced Digital Forensic Analysts
  • Information Security Professionals
  • Federal Agents and Law Enforcement Professionals
  • Red Team Members, Penetration Testers, and Exploit Developers
  • GCFE and GCIH Cert Holders

Learning Objectives:

The topic areas for each exam part are the following:

  • Analyzing Volatile Malicious Event Artifacts
  • Analyzing Volatile Windows Event Artifacts
  • Enterprise Environment Incident Response
  • Enterprise Environment Incident Response
  • File System Timeline Artifact Analysis
  • Identification of Malicious System and User Activity
  • Identification of Normal System and User Activity
  • Introduction to File System Timeline Forensics
  • Introduction to Memory Forensics
  • NTFS Artifact Analysis
  • Windows Artifact Analysis

Top skills you'll learn with GCFA certification

Threat hunting and incident response: Learn and master the tools, techniques, and procedures necessary to effectively hunt, detect, and contain a variety of adversaries and to remediate incidents. 

Malware analysis and detection: Detect and hunt unknown live, dormant, and custom malware in memory across multiple Windows systems in an enterprise environment. 

PowerShell and F-response enterprise: Hunt through and perform incident response across hundreds of unique systems simultaneously using PowerShell or F-Response Enterprise and the SIFT Workstation. 

Memory forensics and network analysis: Identify and track malware beaconing outbound to its command and control (C2) channel via memory forensics, registry analysis, and network connection residue. 

Root cause analysis: Determine how the breach occurred by identifying the root cause, the beachhead systems, and initial attack mechanisms. 

Anti-forensics techniques: Identify living off-the-land techniques, including malicious use of PowerShell and WMI. 

Advanced adversary techniques: Target advanced anti-forensics techniques like hidden and time-stamped malware and living off-the-land techniques used to move in the network and maintain an attacker's presence. 

Memory analysis and threat hunting: Use memory analysis, incident response, and threat-hunting tools in the SIFT Workstation to detect hidden processes, malware, attacker command lines, rootkits, network connections, and more. 

Timeline and super-timeline analysis: Track user and attacker activity second-by-second on the system you are analyzing through in-depth timeline and super-timeline analysis. 

Data recovery and lateral movement analysis: Recover data cleared using anti-forensics techniques via Volume Shadow Copy and Restore Point analysis. Identify lateral movement and pivots within your enterprise across your endpoints, showing how attackers transition from system to system without detection. 

Privilege escalation and credential theft: Understand how the attacker can acquire legitimate credentials - including domain administrator rights - even in a locked-down environment.

Data exfiltration detection and remediation: Track data movement as attackers collect critical data and shift it to exfiltration collection points.

The final say

When you complete the GIAC GCFA certification program, you'll learn important skills to help you succeed in the digital security industry and show employers that you're committed to professional growth and protecting organizations from cyberattacks. 

The demand for skilled digital security professionals is high in demand. So, having the GIAC GCFA certification under your belt can be a real boost for your career. 

If you want to take the GIAC GCFA certification, CBT Proxy can help you pass the exam on your first attempt. To learn more about the exam, click the chat button, and one of our consultants will get in touch with you and guide you accordingly. 

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