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Difference between CCNA Security, CCNP Security, and CCIE Security

The CCNA, CCNP, and CCIE are certifications from one of the leading networking solutions providing company, the CISCO SYSTEMS INC. The company has been consistently powering security in Internet-enabled communications through a variety of its products and the most important among them is the certifications that it offers. Cisco categorizes its certificates into 5 basic cadres and they are as follows.

  1. Entry level certificates.
  2. Associate level certificates.
  3. Professional level certificates.
  4. Expert level certificates.
  5. Architect level certificates.

Cisco is not only focusing on the internet or network security but also it has certificates in other fields such as telecommunications equipment, high-technology services, etc. As of now, let us focus on the security related certifications from Cisco i.e. CCNA, CCNP, and CCIE.

These certifications guarantee one to place him or her in a networking security related job and higher your proficiency the higher the chances of a great job! As they are from a trusted and widely established networking solution providing company, the Cisco, these certifications are accepted worldwide in most multi-national companies without a second thought!

Before we go to what these certificates actually are, let us become familiar with what those above-mentioned levels mean. As you have guessed, they are nothing but directly related to the level of knowledge that the person owns with respect to the Internet networking and security.

  • The Entry level certificates just provide an overall knowledge of the networking concepts and are much helpful for those starting their career in networking. You can also go for it if you still do not have an idea of the networking concepts and wishes to know it for an effective internet communication. Some of the entry level certificates from Cisco are CCENT and CCT.
  • The Associate level certifications provide an overall idea of the network setup and the troubleshooting processes. The candidates with this certificate can easily go ahead and frame a design for networking taught on topics such as how to troubleshoot and how to come up with better solutions. Cisco provides a vast number of certifications in this category and some of them are CCDA, CCNA Cloud, CCNA Collaboration, CCNA Data Center, CCNA Industrial, CCNA Routing & Switching, CCNA Security, CCNA Service Provider, and CCNA Wireless.
  • The Professional level certifications are slightly advanced in its arena and it imparts strong subject knowledge to the networking solutions seeking candidates. With the vast coverage of technologies and by providing good knowledge in networking skills, these certificates can earn great jobs apart from a being a professional in your field. Some of the professional level certifications from Cisco are CCDP, CCNP Cloud, CCNP Collaboration, CCNP Data Center, CCNP Routing & Switching, CCNP Security, CCNP Service Provider, and CCNP Wireless.
  • The Expert level certifications are in great demand across the world and can get you high paying jobs as well. These certificates are capable of imparting expert level knowledge in the networking fields and in the related communication processes. Some of the expert level certificates from Cisco are CCDE, CCIE Collaboration, CCIE Data Center, CCIE Routing & Switching, CCIE Security, CCIE Service Provider, and CCIE Wireless.
  • The Architect level certificate is the ultimate level among all the certificates from the Cisco and the individual with such a certificate would be capable of solving the growing global demands of any multinational company. If you earn this certificate, then you potentially translate the business concepts into technical ones that too in an evolutionary manner. CCAr is the only Architect level certificate that Cisco offers at present.

Difference between CCNA Security, CCNP Security, and CCIE Security

CCNA Security:

CCNA stands for Cisco Certified Network Associate and it can be earned in a variety of domains such as Cloud, Collaboration, Data Center, Industrial, Routing & Switching, Security, Service Provider, and Wireless. Among these, the CCNA security certification provides all the security related knowledge such as safeguarding the network, installation process, troubleshooting, etc. As we have seen earlier, it comes under the Associate category of the Cisco certifications. Therefore, the candidate seeking it should have finished a certification from the lower categories. Cisco calls it as a prerequisite and we shall discuss in detail about those certifications in the coming texts.

  • Prerequisite certifications for CCNA Security:

The candidate before taking the CCNA security certification should have earned at least one of the valid below mentioned certifications.

  • CCENT or
  • CCNA Routing & Switching or
  • Any CCIE Certification.
  • What it covers?

This certification covers a variety of security related topics such as SIEM technology, Cloud Systems & Virtual Network Topologies, BYOD (Bring Your own Device), 802.1x Authentication, ISE (Identity Service Engine), Cisco FirePOWER Next Generation IPS (under Domain 6.0), Anti-Malware or Cisco Anti-Malware protection.

  • Which Exam(s) should be taken?

To be a CCNA Security certified individual, you should take and get a pass percentage in the 210-260 IINS (Implementing Cisco Network Security) conducted by the Cisco.

Difference between CCNA Security, CCNP Security, and CCIE Security-1

CCNP Security:

CCNP Security stands for Cisco Certified Network Professional Security and the candidate with the certificate can successfully choose & deploy Firewalls, IDS/IPS solutions, and VPNS. They can also ensure the security in switches, routers, and in other networking devices. Cisco has set up this syllabus in such a manner that it aligns with the requisites of a Network Security Engineer.

  • Prerequisite certifications for CCNP Security:

The candidate before taking the CCNP Security certification must have earned any of the following certifications.

  • CCNA Security or
  • Any CCIE Certification.
  • What it covers?

This certification includes a list of examinations and all of them should be completed for a successful completion of the CCNP Security Certification. Those exams cover secure accesses in different architectures & components, threat mitigation in networks, endpoint controls solutions. It also tests the concepts of BYOD. Few of the exams also check your knowledge on how t strengthen the network perimeter such NAT (Network Address Translation) and Zoned-based Firewalls. SIMOS exam accesses your knowledge in VPN technology and Remote Communication. Few of the VPN technology covered are SSL VPN and site-to-site VPN (FlexVPN, DMVPN). The SITCS exam focuses on Firewalls and checks your knowledge in AMS (Advanced Malware Protection), and in the Web and E-mail Security.

  • Which Exam(s) should be taken?

As a candidate wishing to get this certification done, you can take all of the following exams. 300-208 SISAS, 300-208 SISAS, 300-209 SIMOS, and 300-210 SITCS.

Difference between CCNA Security, CCNP Security, and CCIE Security-2

CCIE Security:

CCIE stands for Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert Security and provides knowledge on the entire suite of Cisco technologies related to security. Being a person with CCIE security, you can architect, engineer, deploy, and troubleshoot the security related issues in any network. It also gives an idea of the modern security threats, risks, vulnerabilities and other requirements.

  • Prerequisite certifications for CCIE Security:

The glad news is that you need not clear any of the Cisco’s certifications before going for CCIE Security Certification. But Cisco advises the candidates to have a minimum work experience of at least 3 to 5 years. Anyhow, it is an optional one and you can always go for it as you wish.

  • What it covers?

It covers a variety of topics such as the functionality of networks and the related security concepts. It also includes the next generation concepts such as Firewalls, Intrusion Prevention, Policy Management, Identity Services, Malware protection, and device hardening.

  • Which Exam(s) should be taken?

This certification requires you to take two exams one is in written form and the other is in the practical form. The 400-251 written exam is allowed for 2 hours whereas the rest of the exams are allowed only for 90 minutes. The other one is the practical exam named CCIE Security Lab Exam, and 8 hours are allowed for completion of this exam.

We have almost covered the important points about each of the exams and let us compare it in a tabular form.

S.No Differences in CCNA Security CCNP Security CCIE Security
1. Abbreviation Cisco Certified Network Associate Security. Cisco Certified Network Professional Security. Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert Security.
2. Under which level of the Cisco’s category of exams does it come? It comes under Associate level. It is a Professional level certification. It is an Expert level certification.
3. Prerequisite certifications CCENT or CCNA Routing & Switching or Any CCIE Certification. CCNA Security or Any CCIE Certification. No prerequisite certifications.
4. Which exams should be taken in order to earn this certificate? 210-260 IINS (Implementing Cisco Network Security) These entire exams should be taken – 300-208 SISAS, 300-208 SISAS, 300-209 SIMOS, and 300-210 SITCS. The 400-251 written exam and an eight-hour lab exam should be taken.
5. What it covers or which concepts should the candidate is familiarized with? Security related topics such as SIEM technology, Cloud Systems & Virtual Network Topologies, BYOD (Bring Your own Device), 802.1x Authentication, ISE (Identity Service Engine), Cisco FirePOWER Next Generation IPS (under Domain 6.0), Anti-Malware or Cisco Anti-Malware protection. Different architectures & components, threat mitigation in networks, endpoint controls solutions, BYOD, (Network Address Translation), Zoned-based Firewalls, ` VPN technology & Remote Communication, AMS (Advanced malware protection), and Web & E-mail Security. The functionality of networks & the related security concepts, next-generation concepts such as Firewalls, Intrusion Prevention, Policy Management, Identity Services, Malware protection, and device hardening.

Hope you are clear about these three certifications from Cisco and contact us, if you need more information or if you find any discrepancies in the text.


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References :


[0]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cisco_Systems

[1]http://www.cisco.com/

[2]http://wahlnetwork.com/2013/09/22/ccna-data-center-exams-experience/

[3]http://www.techno-ed.com/CCNPTraining

[4]http://www.moniquetraining.com/courses/solutions-1-col/ccie-security/

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