The GIAC Security Essentials (GSEC) certification is an excellent entry-level certification for those looking to demonstrate their proficiency in systems security administration. By obtaining the GIAC GSEC certification, professionals can showcase their skills and knowledge in information security.
If you're already thinking about pursuing an information security certification, opting for the GSEC can be a wise choice.
What is the GIAC GSEC certification exam?
The GIAC Security Essentials (GSEC) certification is a vendor-neutral credential offered by Global Information Assurance Certification (GIAC), a prominent cybersecurity certification provider. The GIAC GSEC validates your knowledge and skills of information security beyond simple terminology and concepts. To earn the GIAC GSEC certification, you must pass an exam that covers information security, including access control, cryptography, network security, risk management, and security policies and procedures.
The GSEC exam consists of 106-180 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within four to five hours. A 73% or higher passing score is required to earn the GIAC GSEC certification. The GSEC certification is designed for professionals who work in information security and have basic information in systems and networking concepts.
Here are the topics covered in the GSEC certification exam:
- Defense in depth, access control, and password management
- Cryptography: basic concepts, algorithms and deployment, and application
- Cloud: AWS fundamentals, Microsoft cloud
- Defensible network architecture, networking and protocols, and network security
- Incident handling and response, data loss prevention, mobile device security, vulnerability scanning, and penetration testing
- Linux: Fundamentals, hardening and securing
- SIEM, critical controls, and exploit mitigation
- Web communication security, virtualization and cloud security, and endpoint security
- Windows: access controls, automation, auditing, forensics, security infrastructure, and services
Top skills that you will learn with GSEC certification
As a GIAC GSEC certified professional, you will learn practical methods to detect and prevent attacks with actionable techniques. In this course, you will learn tips and tricks to identify and deal with vulnerability threats and cyberattacks within your organization.
As cyberattacks increase, cybersecurity professionals must be prepared to protect organizations' critical data and network security.
- How to build a cybersecurity program incorporating detection, response, and prevention.
- Security tips and tricks that focus on addressing high-priority problems within your organization and implementing effective security solutions.
- Understanding how adversaries adapt tactics and techniques and how to adjust your defense accordingly.
- How to better defend against ransomware.
- An advanced persistent threat-based network architecture (VLANs, NAC, and 802.1x).
- The Identity and Access Management (IAM) methodology includes strong authentication (Multi-Factor Authentication) aspects.
- An overview of Amazon, Microsoft, and Google cloud providers, including the concept of multi-cloud.
- Identifying visible weaknesses in a system using various tools and securing the system once vulnerabilities are discovered. (realistic and practical application of a vulnerability management program).
- With tools like tcpdump and Wireshark, sniff network communication protocols to discover what's happening (including access credentials).
- Learn how to use Windows, Linux, and macOS command line tools to look for high-risk indicators of compromise and basic scripting concepts for automating continuous monitoring.
- The best method to reduce the attack surface is through hardening and configuration management using a network visibility map.
- How do some organizations succeed and fail when it comes to security, and most importantly how to win.
GIAC GSEC certification: tips to ace the exam
- Familiarize yourself with the GSEC certification exam books
- Create an instinctive index with as much detail as possible
- Practice tests and experiments to remember topics
- Treat practice tests as the actual exam to understand the skill level
- Chart out a mind map for a clear understanding of SANS books
- Attend SANS GSEC official training workshops for additional support
- Instructors from SANS are experienced professionals and can answer questions during the learning process
GIAC GSEC certification: career opportunities
If you are from an IT background and have the fundamental knowledge of security information, consider taking the GIAC GSEC exam. Here are the job roles that you can take with the GAIC GSEC certification:
- IT security manager
- Penetration tester
- Computer forensic analyst
- IT auditor
- Software development engineer
- Security administrator
The final words
The GIAC GSEC certification is a job-specific certification for those who want to work in IT security, network security, and administration. If you want to break into the IT security field and don't have much knowledge of cybersecurity, the GIAC GSEC certification is an excellent choice.
Many professionals believe that the GSEC credential covers the same subject areas in much more depth, addressing more modern technology, skills, or methods.
If you want to take the GIAC GSEC certification, we at CBT Proxy can help you pass your exam on your first attempt. To learn more, you can click the chat button below, and one of our guides will get in touch with you.