4 Top Ethical Hacking Certifications to Advance Your Profession

By attempting to obtain access to a computer system or network, application, or data, ethical hackers play the role of an intruder. They do this legally and with the company’s permission to identify weaknesses. Working in this sector requires you to think like a hacker and apply your best offensive cybersecurity talents to help your firm improve its security.

A CEH certification course is essential to validate your  knowledge and expertise in offensive cybersecurity.  

If you want to work as an ethical hacker, you should consider getting a certification to help you: 

  • Develop new offensive security abilities
  • Demonstrate your abilities to potential employers.
  • Improve your resume
  • Meet the requirements for new job openings
  • Boost your job-related self-assurance

In this article, let’s go through four prominent certification alternatives for ethical hackers (or aspiring ethical hackers). Let’s learn more about each certification exam, including what to anticipate and prepare for success. 

Four Popular Ethical Hacking Certifications

These four well-known cybersecurity certificates are highly-useful for jobs in ethical hacking, penetration testing, and other offensive cybersecurity fields.

Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)

The EC-ethical Council’s hacking certification is one of the most sought-after cybersecurity credentials, appearing in nearly 10,000 job search results. The CEH certification objective is to teach you how to think like a hacker and improve your penetration testing, attack routes, detection, and prevention skills.

Prerequisites: To be eligible for the CEH exam, you must have two years of experience working in the role of information security. By completing an official EC-Council CEH training, you can avoid this need.

Cost: Depending on the test location, from $950 to $1,199.

Advice: The EC-Council provides a free CEH Exam Blueprint that describes the topics included in the multiple-choice exam. Previous test takers have said that taking Boson’s sample examinations to get a feel for the test questions helped them pass and obtain CEH certification.

GIAC Penetration Tester (GPEN)

If you’re keen on penetration testing, which is a job that fits within the ethical hacking category, the GPEN certification could be a suitable fit. Obtaining a GPEN validates your authority to perform penetration testing by utilizing cutting-edge methodologies and procedures. Password attacks, Scanning and exploitation, and web application pen testing are all covered, as well as test planning, scope, and recon.

Prerequisites: No prerequisites to take the GPEN exam.

Cost: $2,499

Advice: Take advantage of the two practice exams that come with the exam when you register. It can help you anticipate what to expect and identify areas that may require more attention. Additionally, you can opt for certified ethical hacker training to understand core concepts.

CompTIA PenTest+

CompTIA’s PenTest+ exam is unique because it includes multiple-choice and performance-based questions. These questions test your ability to solve problems in a simulated environment. The exam is structured to assess your ability to conduct penetration tests in various contexts, including cloud, hybrid, web application, onsite, and internet of things (IoT).

Prerequisites: There are no prerequisites, but CompTIA advises that you have three to four years of expertise in information security and have mastered the topics included in the Network+ and Security+ tests.

Cost: $370

Advice: Because the PenTest+ exam examines your knowledge in terms of methods, it’s good to prepare by utilizing several study tools. 

Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP)

OSCP is another highly sought-after certification for pen testers, ethical hackers, and other offensive-minded security professionals. The exam assesses your ability to penetrate a succession of target devices and generate complete reports for each attack.

Prerequisites: No official qualifications are required. But you should be familiar with bash scripting, Perl or Python, networking, and Linux, according to Offensive Security. 

Cost: $999 onwards

Advice: To become a certified ethical hacker through OSCP you need to take detailed technical notes as you go through boxes or problems during your preparation. Make a table of contents for your notes to discover what you need fast on test day if you run into a problem you’ve encountered before. Preparing an exploit report template before the exam is also a good idea.

Roles that seek certification as an ethical hacker

These certified ethical hacker certification credentials are frequently requested or required for the following career roles:

  • Penetration tester
  • Red team
  • Malware analyst
  • Code auditor
  • Ethical hacker


Start studying from top industry professionals for a CEH certification. If you’re just getting started in cybersecurity or interested in whether a career in cybersecurity might be a suitable fit for you, go for certified ethical hacker training. Then, as you gain experience in virtual lab environments, you’ll be able to add a certificate to your résumé.

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