What is CompTIA Security+?

Taylor Karl
What is CompTIA Security+? 5200 0

The CompTIA Security+ certification is an industry-wide standard for baseline computer security knowledge for IT professionals. It's a vendor-neutral cert that has earned the status of being accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). So, what exactly is CompTIA Security+, and what does it entail? Keep reading to learn more about this important certification and how it can benefit your IT career.

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What is CompTIA Security+Explained: What is the CompTIA Security+ Certification

The CompTIA Security+ certification tests your basic IT security knowledge. It covers essential skills for core security tasks. This entry-level certification is perfect for IT professionals. It helps them develop key skills for different cybersecurity jobs. Earning this certification shows you can find and fix security issues. It makes you more appealing to employers. It proves you have practical and technical security experience. Getting certified helps you build a strong foundation to handle security challenges. It also helps you advance your IT career.

5 Reasons the CompTIA Security+ Certification is Worth It

Earning the CompTIA Security+ certification shows you have knowledge about security controls and how to implement them. CompTIA's site says, "CompTIA Security+ is a global certification that validates the baseline skills necessary to perform core security functions and pursue an IT security career."

The exam tests your knowledge with best practice and knowledge-based questions. Topics include network security, secure application development, compliance and operational security, threats and vulnerabilities, application, data and host security, access control and identity management, risk management, cryptography and PKI, disaster recovery, and business continuity planning.

The Security+ cert is an industry-recognized cert that shows your proficiency in cybersecurity solutions and practices. It can be a stepping-stone to other certs like CISSP or CASP. After passing the exam, you're eligible for jobs in government agencies, IT security consulting firms, or any company that needs to implement IT security policies.

Below is a list of advantages from earning a CompTIA Security+ Certification:

  1. Access to Diverse and In-Demand Job Roles
  2. Competitive Salary Range
  3. Enhanced Professional Recognition and Career Growth
  4. Extensive Support and Resources from CompTIA
  5. Alignment with Government and Compliance Standards

#1. Access to Diverse and In-Demand Job Roles

The IT cybersecurity job market is strong due to a global shortage. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts about 19,500 job openings per year for information security analysts over the next decade. As data breaches become more common, organizations are seeking certified security professionals. The CompTIA Security+ certification is recognized by private companies and government agencies.

This makes a CompTIA Security+ Certification valuable for roles such as:

  • Junior IT Auditor/Penetration Tester
  • Network Administrator
  • Systems Administrator
  • Security Administrator
  • Security Specialist
  • Security Consultant
  • Security Engineer

#2. Competitive Salary Range

Like with many roles in the technology sector, the salary ranges of CompTIA Security+ holders can vary widely based on factors such as the company's size, the location of the company, and the responsibilities of the position.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, salary ranges fall into the following percentiles:

  • 25th Percentile: $63,020
  • 50th Percentile: $81,100
  • 75th Percentile: $104,460
  • 90th Percentile: $130,200

#3. Enhanced Professional Recognition and Career Growth

The CompTIA Security+ cert is recognized worldwide. It proves your strong foundation in security principles, making you stand out to employers. Earning this cert can open doors to roles like security analyst, network admin, and systems admin. Certified pros often earn higher salaries than their non-certified peers.

#4. Extensive Support and Resources from CompTIA

As a certified professional, you'll have access to many learning resources from CompTIA. These include webinars, study guides, and practice exams. The simple cert renewal process through CompTIA's Continuing Education program helps you stay current with minimal hassle. You'll also join a global community of professionals. This offers networking opportunities and career advice.

#5. Alignment with Government and Compliance Standards

The CompTIA Security+ certification meets U.S. DoD Directive 8570 requirements. This makes it vital for government security roles. It also aligns with ISO 17024 standards.

Who Should Pursue CompTIA Security+

If you're already using IT security controls at work or want to be an IT Security professional, the CompTIA Security+ certification may be perfect for you. It's also great if you want to stand out during a job search. Taking the CompTIA Security+ exam shows employers you have the skills to protect their systems and data.

The cert is approved as a baseline security cert for some government or military jobs. It's also a key first step for those seeking advanced security certs like SSCP and CISSP. The exam provides a great foundation for IT and non-IT security professionals who want to learn more about computer security.

The CompTIA Security+ exam is challenging, but there are no prerequisites. However, CompTIA suggests having at least two years of IT experience with a security focus and the CompTIA Network+ cert or similar networking experience. If you meet this, you have a better chance of passing the exam.

Core Topics on the CompTIA Security+ Certification Exam

The CompTIA Security+ SY0-601 exam incorporates several updates from the previous SY0-501 version, reflecting the latest trends and practices in IT security.

Objectives Description
Network Security Focuses on securing networks and protecting data during transmission.
Threats, Attacks, and Vulnerabilities Includes identifying, mitigating, and managing various threats, including emerging ones.
Risk Management Enhances assessment and management techniques to minimize impacts.
Cryptography Covers securing data with encryption and cryptographic methods.
Identity and Access Management Updates to modern access control solutions and user privilege management.
Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Planning Emphasizes maintaining operations during disruptions.
Compliance Addresses legal and regulatory adherence.
Operational Security Incorporates day-to-day security practices and procedures.
Technologies and Tools Emphasizes the use of modern security tools for assessments and troubleshooting.
Architecture and Design Covers secure network architectures, cloud security, virtualization, and cryptographic methods.

These updated objectives ensure a comprehensive understanding of modern IT security challenges and solutions.

CompTIA Security+ Exam Format

The exam has up to 90 questions in different formats and must be completed in 90 minutes. Time management is crucial for success. Preparation and hands-on practice are key to success. The exam includes:

  • Multiple-choice questions (single and multi-response)
  • Drag-and-drop activities
  • Performance-based items to solve problems in a simulated environment
Feature Details
Number of Questions 90
Passing Score 750
Test Length 90 mins
Prerequisite None
Recommended Experience CompTIA Network+ and 2 years in IT admin and security
Cost $392 (US)
Exam Code SY0-601


CompTIA Security+ is one of the most prominent certifications in IT security and is designed to measure the skills and knowledge required for a career in IT security. This guide covers the basics of CompTIA Security+ and the career options available to those with a Security certification.

If you're ready to start your journey towards this important industry-wide baseline standard, consider enrolling in our comprehensive CompTIA Security+ course. We hope this helps as you begin your journey toward achieving this important industry-wide baseline standard.