CompTIA’s Security+: What We Expect

August 22, 2008 at 10:51 am | Posted in CompTIA | 2 Comments
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As you may have heard, CompTIA has been working to revise their Security+ exam. This is very good news for an exam that is ripe for a comprehensive update. While CompTIA’s exams are great for new IT professionals, the current Security+ test was created in 2001 and doesn’t cover technology developments from the past 7 years.

CompTIA started the revision process for this exam early this year and sent out multiple requests for subject matter experts (SMEs). They recently announced that the new version of Security+ will be released in October, 2008, and published the updated Exam Objectives. You can download the new objectives at You will need to fill out the BOLD fields in the form.

The new objectives are in italics. (Thanks, CompTIA!) Here’s a quick overview of the main points, illustrating how the objectives and their relative weighting have shifted (click the thumbnail to view a readable version):

CompTIA Security+ Objectives, 2007 to 2008

While I don’t have a crystal ball and I haven’t seen the exam, I expect to see changes similar to what I experienced with the A+ exams. The biggest change I saw in the 2008 A+ exams was longer questions that often included scenarios. I hope that CompTIA follows this plan with the Security+ exam. While this exam will always be very straightforward and knowledge-based (meaning a lot of memorization), adding scenario-based questions can help increase the difficulty of the test, thereby increasing the prestige of the certification.

CompTIA Press has not released any book references for this test as of today. I expect the study resources to be released shortly before the exam goes live. This is what CompTIA has done in the past.

Transcender’s plan is to start working on an updated Security+ practice exam and study guide package as soon as we can look at the beta exam and see what’s changed. Depending on how soon the test is released, we plan to have a practice test out in the 4th quarter of 2008 (that’s marketing speak for “between October and Christmas”).

Then what? Well, CompTIA has sent out invitations for Network+ SMEs. I expect a new version of Network+ to be released early 2009 (once again without the benefit of a crystal ball.) I have also been wondering just what is going to happen to the Server+ certification. This test has not been updated in quite some time.

That’s about all I can think of for now. Feel free to ask questions. I may not know the answers, but I probably can point you in the right direction.



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  1. So the BIG question is – if I purchase exam material today would it be worthwhile or should I just wait until you have the material that covers the 2008 objectives? Can I upgrade if I purchase today?

  2. David, we devoted a whole post to your answer. Check it out.

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