The need for cyber security and ethical hacking has never been greater in today’s highly digitized business world. Cybercrime is becoming an increasingly severe problem as more organizations go online. If cybercrime were to be compared to a country, it would rank as the world’s third-largest economic power, after the United States and China.
Worldwide, cybercrime costs are expected to rise 15% each year, reaching $10.5 trillion by 2025. That’s up from $3 trillion in 2015. This is the most significant transfer of economic wealth in human history, putting innovation and investment incentives at risk. Cybercrime is ten times larger than the yearly natural disaster damage around the globe and will soon be more lucrative than the entire global trade of all major illicit drugs combined. To put it another way, ethical hackers and cyber security experts are in great demand.
An ethical hack is an authorized attempt to gain unlawful access to a computer system, software, or data. The imitation of harmful attackers’ methods and activities is known as ethical hacking. This approach aids in the detection of security flaws that may be addressed before malicious hackers take advantage of them.
Cybersecurity experts who engage in ethical hacking are known as “white hats.” They play an essential role in improving an organization’s security posture by carrying out preventative activities. The goal of ethical hacking is to strengthen the security of a computer system rather than to cause harm. It is performed with the organization’s or asset owner’s permission.
Simply put, an ethical hacker is a professional who uses the same skills and tools as malicious hackers but without any harmful intentions. Because it enables organizations to detect potential threats in their systems before they become a problem, ethical hacking has become critical.
Together with MyComputerCareer, you will be able to take advantage of all the benefits that cybersecurity can offer to your career. We are an Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET)-accredited organization that specializes in training both IT professionals and newcomers in the industry in becoming cybersecurity specialists. Our Information Technology Security and Administration (ITSA), Cyber Security Specialist (CSS), Cyber Security Engineer (CSE), and the Associate of Applied Science in Network Administration and Cyber Security programs will help you earn numerous IT certifications in cybersecurity and associated fields. With such certifications from reputable organizations such as Microsoft, CompTIA, Cisco, Linux, and EC-Council, you will become a true asset and indispensable specialist for any organization in today’s highly digitized business environment.
This guide will explore the certified ethical hacker (CEH) certification and what it implies. We’ll also talk about how to become a certified ethical hacker, what CEH certified professionals do on a day-to-day basis, and the salary range for these IT specialists, among other things.
What Are The Essentials of Ethical Hacking?
Before we get started properly, let’s make some of the terms clear.
- Black Hat Hacker – Malicious hackers who illegally access computers and networks for profit or personal gain are known as unethical hackers or security crackers. This type of hacking is forbidden by law.
- White Hat Hacker – These are computer security experts who work within the framework of the law to evaluate a system’s security and use similar methods as black hat hackers.
- Grey Hat Hacker – Hackers who breach computer systems without permission but do not exploit or steal. In most cases, these hackers notify the system administrator about the security vulnerabilities. This sort of hacking is sometimes permissible and sometimes unlawful.
When it comes to ethical (white hat) hacking, many essential protocol elements must be followed. They include:
- Remaining Within the Legal Bounds – Ethical hackers need to obtain approval before performing their cyber security procedure and vulnerability assessment. Secondly, ethical hackers need to define the scope of their system security testing to remain within both the legal bounds and the boundaries set by the organization.
- Reporting Existing Security Vulnerabilities – The white hat hacker must immediately notify the firm of any flaws found during the security assessment. They should also provide repair instructions for these problems.
- Respecting Data Sensitivity – When it comes to data sensitivity, ethical hackers may be asked to sign non-disclosure agreements as well as other conditions and restrictions determined by the investigated firm.
The Skills Needed for Ethical Hacking
Those who wish to become ethical hackers must have a solid understanding of ethical hacking standards. They’ll also need the appropriate certifications, which are included in an ethical hacking security package. This includes being a Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Advanced Penetration Testing Specialist, or EC-Council Licensed Security Analyst (ECSA).
Not all ethical hackers go through this certification procedure to succeed. However, it greatly benefits those who want to enhance their skills and obtain employment with organizations that regularly utilize ethical hacking techniques.
To be considered for this job, you must have a solid understanding of ethical hacking foundations, meet minimal educational requirements, complete the required ethical hacking training and certification courses, and gain job experience. This implies an extensive understanding of IT and computer technology. To be a competent, ethical hacker, you must possess the following abilities.
- Cybersecurity Concepts & Technologies
- Cloud computing
- Web Application
- Advanced TCP/IP
- Wireshark or Tcpdump
- Database skills
- Digital Forensics
- Networking skills
- Kali Linux Operating System Skills
- Wireless network technologies
- Problem-solving skill
- Communication skills
- Analytical skills
- Creative thinking
How And Why Ethical Hacking Is Important
Today, white hat hacking is essential since businesses are becoming increasingly digital. To discover vulnerabilities that may help the company’s growth in terms of regulatory compliance and other goals, ethical hackers must act as if they are dangerous hackers.
Hackers who work as white hats may anticipate being well compensated and have bright employment chances in the future. However, there are additional incentives for cyber security professionals to learn this discipline. The following are some of the advantages:
- Understanding the Malicious Hacker’s Way of Thinking – To be a cyber security expert, you must understand how the opponent works. So, if someone is familiar with this subject, they can do it on their own and protect an organization’s network security as well as its critical assets from being stolen. This isn’t limited to security. It’s also a must-have for network specialists. They must find and repair any vulnerabilities that a malicious hacker might exploit to access an organization’s network. In addition, the breadth of ethical hacking has expanded as a result of a cyber attack or data breach becoming more common today.
- Software Quality Assurance Skills – An ethical hacker and a quality assurance tester have several things in common. Although security testing is not done frequently, white hats validate numerous software functions under varied conditions. They may be beneficial to perform a practical security test because they can provide valuable data to help the software’s security meet industry standards and best practices. It also aids in the development of tools for detecting and eradicating well-known vulnerabilities. As a result, code authors will effectively create error-free codes while checking their programs for any coding flaws.
- Understanding Regulatory Compliance – Organizations should improve their security standards in response to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and other comparable regulations. Individuals unfamiliar with a firm’s network or software may find ethical hacking attractive because it allows them to identify and secure an organization’s networks and software. Even personnel responsible for administration and strategic planning should be aware of typical assaults, which they can include in their skillset when developing risk-management policies.
- A Career-Advancing Opportunity. Employers value and recognize individuals who keep proving their worth to the company on a continuing basis. The typical understanding of a field among entry-level applicants is insufficient. Learning white hat hacking may be helpful for both long-term and entry-level staff in terms of career advancement and progression. It’s an excellent addition for anybody who wants to work in IT, software, or development. It would be a specialized talent that just a few people might possess. This knowledge will help the student cultivate the correct attitude, tools, and strategies for cybersecurity. It will also educate them about industry best practices that may assist them in reducing risks.
What Are Ethical Hacking Average Salaries and Job Opportunities?
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Information Security Analyst’s Outlook, cybersecurity is one of the nation’s fastest-growing occupations. According to BLS, information security analyst demand will increase by 33% by 2030, far surpassing average employment growth. Salaries for information security analysts are about $103,590 per year ($49.80 per hour).
Between 2021 and 2025, there will be over 3.5 million cybersecurity job openings worldwide that will go unfilled. Learning ethical hacking is the most effective method to enter the field and take advantage of the talent scarcity. Certifications are among the best ways to differentiate oneself from other entry-level applicants by demonstrating competence and knowledge.
The EC-Council’s Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) is one of the most recognized and accepted cybersecurity certifications, a prerequisite for many cybersecurity jobs. A CEH certified professional is expected to be familiar with and understand the various tools and tactics utilized by penetration testers, hackers, and network defenders and the actions that must be taken. MyComputerCareer provides specialized training and certification preparation for becoming an EC-Council Certified Ethical Hacker.
Certified Ethical Hacker Salary Expectations
The typical compensation for a CEH will vary depending on the job. The expected earnings will differ because the CEH credential applies to a wide range of security activities in many organizational structures. A candidate who obtains this accreditation may qualify for higher-paying jobs or more money in their present position, as long as they fulfill the requirements.
According to Indeed, the following are the typical salaries of cybersecurity professionals in occupations that frequently need or demand CEH certification:
- IT Security Specialist -$50,513 per year
- Penetration Tester -$111,303 per year
- Security Engineer -$102,836 per year
- Information Security Analyst -$82,989 per year
- Security Officer -$49,904 per year
- Senior Information Security Analyst -$115,718 per year
- Network Security Engineer – $115,407 per year
- Cloud Engineer – $118,152 per year
- Application Security Engineer -$111,832 per year
Learning Your Way Up To Ethical Hacking
Patience is an important quality to develop if you want to work as an ethical hacker. You can’t expect to get a high spot and make a decent living right now, but there’s still a lot of potential for both in a short amount of time. Nobody can become an ethical hacker overnight, but the road there is one of constant growth and significant financial return on investment.
The First Foot Forward
A computer science education is usually the first step taken by an ethical hacker. A CompTIA certification (A+ certification) is also a possibility that requires two separate tests to be passed. These exercises test a person’s knowledge of PC components and their ability to deconstruct and reassemble a PC.
To be eligible for this credential, you must have at least 500 hours of professional computing experience. At this level of your career, you may expect to make an average yearly salary of $44,000. You must first develop expertise and obtain a Network+ or CCNA certificate before you can progress in your profession.
The Network+ certification validates fundamental networking knowledge, including management, maintenance, installation, and troubleshooting. The CCNA certification confirms that you have the same abilities and objectives as others in your field.
Network Support & Engineering
After you’ve completed your training, you’ll be able to move on to the next stage of your career: networking support. Here you’ll execute tasks like monitoring and updating as well as deploying cybersecurity software and testing for vulnerabilities. You’ll learn about network security in the field, and your goal should be to obtain a position as a network engineer.
Once you’ve worked in network support for a while, you may anticipate earning around $60,000-$65,000 each year! You’ll be building and planning networks rather than simply keeping them up from now on. The emphasis of your approach to becoming an ethical hacker should be on security.
It’s now or never to begin working on security certifications such as Security+, CISSP, and TICSA, for example. The US Department of Defense recognizes the Security+ accreditation, covering access control, identity management, and cryptography.
Onto Information Security
This is a crucial stage on the road to becoming an ethical hacker since you will be dealing with information security for the first time. An information security analyst spends their career performing penetration testing and trying to enhance security measures. To get hands-on experience with some of the ethical hacking tools accessible, concentrate on penetration testing.
It would be best to aim for a Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) certificate at this point in your career. You’ll get all you need to know about how to become a good ethical hacker.
The CEH Exam Details
The CEH V11 certification test has a total of 125 multiple-choice questions. The pass mark for the CEH examination is 75 percent. The EC-Council offers a variety of examination forms, each tailored to a distinct category of certification. An exam form is a collection of questions that have been administered as a version of the test. The EC-Council employs a method to rate each question to ensure that their many exam forms provide comparative knowledge evaluations.
The passing score for each exam form, or bank of questions, ranges from 60% to 85%. Because the difficulty level of each bank of questions varies, so does the corresponding passing score. The examiners cover hacking techniques, scanning tools, port scan types, and anticipated return answers. For test-takers, knowing how to utilize programs like Nmap, Wireshark, Snort, OpenSSL, Netstat, and Hping is advantageous.
The applicant must be at least 18 years of age. Even if the candidate is under 18, they can participate in the actual training course and exam with parental or legal guardian permission. They will also need a letter from their nationally accredited institution for higher education verifying this.
When you take the exam at a physical testing center, it will be proctored by authorized staff. The EC-Council certification test may be conducted onsite at several Pearson VUE testing locations.
Candidates for the EC-Council Professional Certified Wireless Engineer certification examination must pay a $100 non-refundable application fee. The application approval process takes around five to ten working days after the EC-Council receives all necessary information. A candidate must then purchase an examination voucher from the EC-Council Online Store or an authorized training partner once their application is confirmed. The minimum cost of an exam voucher for the EC-Councilstore is $1,199.
To keep their CEH accreditation, practitioners must earn 120 Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits within three years. The credits may be earned in various ways, including attending conferences, writing research papers, giving training sessions in a related field, reading material on relevant subjects, and attending webinars. It will generally cost several hundred dollars each year to achieve CPE credit in most cases.
It’s a great choice for professional certification since it may be used to demonstrate that you have the knowledge and skills to think like an opponent. It’s frequently just one more step toward “top of the industry,” but it’s an essential one that shouldn’t be overlooked.
A CEH credential verifies that a cybersecurity specialist has additional skills beyond simply following existing procedures. Instead, they are a person who can come up with innovative strategies to stay one step ahead of an adversary.
To achieve the certified status, you must pass an extensive examination that tests your knowledge of hacking tools and techniques. You’ll also have to undertake continuing education credits every three years to keep this certification valid. Once you’ve achieved these milestones, you’ll have the perfect combination of skills to be an effective, ethical hacker.
The Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) is one of the most highly sought-after qualifications in cybersecurity circles today because it’s a certification that proves you have unparalleled network security expertise and penetration testing skills.
MyComputerCareer is an award-winning adult technical institution that offers online Information Technology courses or through its eight campuses in Indiana, Ohio, North Carolina, and Texas. We also provide CEH certification training to prepare you for the ethical hacking course and subsequent exam. For more information, contact us immediately.