CCISO vs CISM: Which is the Right Cyber Security Certification?

CISCO vs CISM Certification

In today’s digital-first world, information security officers play a pivotal role in safeguarding the data that powers businesses. As more companies transition online or undergo digital transformations to remain competitive, the importance of robust cybersecurity measures cannot be overstated.

Two premier certifications stand out in the realm of cybersecurity: CISM (Certified Information Security Manager) and CCISO (Certified Chief Information Security Officer). This article offers a detailed comparison of these two leading certifications, providing insights to help you determine which one aligns best with your professional goals and organizational needs.

What is a Cyber Security Certification?

Cyber security certifications help determine the person’s skills in the cyber security field. There are different certifications focused on other areas. This is a growing field with very lucrative career opportunities. With a certification, people can get a six-figure income, and there will always be demand for professionals.

Hence, to get a well-paying job in this field, it is a good idea to go for a certification in a specialization of your choice. It will be a great way to show your potential employers the skills and knowledge you possess. Read on to understand the difference between two certifications – CCISO and CISM.

CISM – Certified Information Security Manager

The Certified Information Security Manager certification is regarded and reputed in IT. This course is best for anyone wishing to become a competent information security manager. This thorough certification attests to your understanding of information security initiatives and how they fit into corporate goals and objectives.

What is CISM

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You can learn concepts like information security governance, compliance, information risk management, and others by enrolling in the CISM certification course by CCSLA. The exam costs $575 for members and $760 for non-members and takes 4 hours to complete 150 multiple-choice questions.

Five years of information security work experience, including at least three years of information security management in three or more job practice analysis areas, are required to obtain the CISM certificate. Nevertheless, a waiver for experience is offered to meet part of the criteria. After completing the course, you can get an average pay package of $162,790 annually.

Benefits of CISM

Listed below are some benefits of going with the CISM certification course:

  • This course will help you get proper recognition and respect in your company.
  • The course will determine your commitment level toward your chosen field.
  • CISM certification also validates your knowledge and skills essential to becoming an information security expert.

Job Opportunities After Completing CISM

Let’s look at some job opportunities that you can get after completing this certification:

  • Security consultant
  • Information risk consultant
  • Business analysts
  • Security auditor
  • Security product manager
  • Security system professional
  • Security designer
  • IT manager
  • Information system security officer
  • Director of Information Security
  • Data governance manager

Who Should Go for CISM?

This certification is suitable for people involved in designing, overseeing, managing, and assessing the information security functions of a company. It suits the below job roles:

  • IT security policymakers and auditors
  • Network security engineers
  • IT managers and consultants
  • Network administrators
  • Information security managers and officers

CCISO – Certified Chief Information Security Officer

EC-Council designed this course to help CISSPs and other cybersecurity managers become executives. This course teaches C-level business competencies like strategic planning, budgeting, and vendor management. The course content is quite similar to studying for an MBA; hence, if one completes this course, they do not have to undergo the former.

CISCO Domain

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One can go for a CCISO certification course after completing CISSP from CCSLA to get a great career opportunity.

You must have at least five years of work experience in three out of the five listed below domains:

  • Governance, risk, and compliance
  • Strategic planning, finance, procurement, and third-party management
  • Information security controls and audit management
  • Information security core competencies
  • Security program management and operations

The optional training packages EC-Council offers vary from $2,499 to $3,499, including the test fee. The 150 questions in the CCISO test cover the topics listed above, and participants have 2.5 hours to finish it. The range of passing scores is 60% to 85%, depending on the difficulty level the particular question bank poses. For renewal, a CCISO has to accrue 120 CPE credits every three years.

On average, you can make $251,440 annually after completing this course. It is also one of the most senior roles in the company’s IT division. This role oversees the business incident response control and security engineers.

Benefits of CCISO

Listed below are the benefits of getting a CCISO certification:

  • This course helps establish a strong connection between financial management, executive management, and technical knowledge and understanding.
  • It places more emphasis on how to apply technical expertise to duties connected to a Chief Information Security Officer’s daily responsibilities than on its technical aspects.
  • The course focuses on five critical domains necessary across businesses and organizations worldwide.
  • It can help develop your skills in penetration testing, ethical hacking, and incident response.
  • This certification enables you to access an exclusive community of CCISO professionals.

Job Opportunities After Completing CCISO

Listed below are some job opportunities after completing your CCISO certification:

  • Chief information security officer
  • Chief security officer
  • Director of Information Security
  • Information security manager

Who Should Go for CCISO?

This course or certification is designed for people overlooking security engineers who want to advance their careers to the next level.

A few of the target audiences are mentioned below:

  • Security consultant
  • Security Architect
  • Security governance and risk management

Why CCISO and CISM Certifications Are Important?

In addition to helping individuals demonstrate that they possess the abilities necessary to thrive in cybersecurity, certifications are beneficial to companies in ways that go beyond simply finding skilled workers. Besides, a certification helps employees learn new skills and add them to their resume.

Simply put, certifications show a candidate’s real value to the employers. Many IT managers believe that certified employees add more value to their organization. Besides, they also think certification boosts productivity and helps employees understand and comprehend clients’ requirements.

This is why companies are willing to pay more for people with certifications. Employers can also reduce skill gaps by hiring certified workers. Hence, to advance your cyber security career, you should choose CCISO and CISM certification and increase your chances of getting your desired opportunity.

How to Choose Between CCISO and CISM Certifications?

Listed below are a few things to consider while choosing your cyber security certification course:

  • Always look for a certification matching your skill set. It is better to go with the certification you are sure is achievable and can be used later to learn more advanced courses. If you are new to IT, attend the beginner’s level course.
  • Check the course fee and understand it completely. It should not have any hidden charges that may surprise you later.
  • For all your certification needs, go with authorized and recognized training centers, such as CCSLA.
  • Check the reviews and testimonials of people who have attended and completed both certifications. It will help you understand which may be the best fit for you.

Things to Remember While Completing Your Certification

Here are some tips or things to remember while choosing and completing your certification:

  • Never rush into taking the exam; instead, take time to understand and practice the concepts. When sure, then only attempt the test.
  • Try to gain as much practical exposure as possible before applying for your certification.
  • Always go for the accreditation valued and recognized in your area of work. A better option is to check if it’s a listed prerequisite for the job you are applying for.
  • Cybersecurity is a vast field with many specializations. Hence, not one certificate can cover everything. You may be required to complete more than one to get your dream opportunity.
  • These certificates must be renewed yearly, and you may need specific points for recertification.

Tips on Clearing the Certification Exam

After completing the course, you must appear for the exam to get certified.

Here are some tips to help you succeed in clearing the exams:

  • The first step is to understand both exam patterns and structures completely. Understand the domain, prerequisites, and study resources.
  • You can also take practice tests to familiarize yourself with the questions that may be asked. It will also benefit in acquiring the skills needed to tackle the exam.
  • You must complete your training course from a recognized center, such as CCSLA. These courses help in clearing through instructor-led training programs.
  • You can also participate and enroll in different cybersecurity communities. A lot of information transfer happens during the discussion within these communities. Thus, it can be an excellent resource for exam preparations.

CCISO vs. CISM – Which is Best for You?

A certification can help you find your dream job in cyber security, irrespective of whether you are new or experienced in this field. Once you have decided to get a certification, the next step is to understand which certification is good for you. You can always consider the job opportunity in your hand or the one you are aiming for while deciding.

Some people prefer to go with both or as many certifications as possible to outshine their competition. At the same time, others may only like to get one. Hence, it would help if you also looked at the deciding factors when choosing, which are already shared above. You can decide on the certification depending on your career goals and the designation you want to work on.

You can also check the job portals and look for job descriptions to see which certification is required. It will also help you make a good decision.

Final Thoughts

It is essential to choose the right certification course. Hence, you must consider your career goals, skills, and technologies you are passionate about learning. Whether you wish to specialize in network solutions, master in security architecture or are interested in secured wireless networks, there is a certification for every need.

Cyber security is a vast space, and there are many certifications available that can easily shape your career. Hence, you can always choose between the CCISO course or the CISM course offered by CCSLA and become a top expert or professional in your respective field.