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How to Get Your CISSP® Certification

Here are the steps to become a CISSP:  

1. Obtain the Required Experience

Candidates must have a minimum of five years cumulative paid full-time work experience in two or more of the 10 domains of the (ISC)² CISSP CBK®. Candidates may receive a one year experience waiver with a four-year college degree, or regional equivalent or additional credential from the (ISC)² approved list, thus requiring four years of direct full-time professional security work experience in 2 or more of the 10 domains of the CISSP CBK.

Don't have the experience? Become an Associate of (ISC)² by successfully passing the CISSP exam. You'll have six years to earn your experience to become a CISSP.

2. Study for the Exam

Note: Effective April 15, 2015, the CISSP exam will be based on a new exam blueprint. Please refer to the Exam Outline and FAQs for details.

  • Download the Exam Outline 
  • Buy the textbook, the Official (ISC)² Guide to the CISSP
  • Take an Official (ISC)² CISSP CBK Training Seminar. These in-classroom seminars help you review and refresh your knowledge of information security. Conducted by (ISC)²-Authorized Instructors, each of whom is up to date on the latest information security-related developments and is an expert in credential-specific domains. Or sign up for (ISC)²'s Live OnLine course, available over the Internet in real-time -- a convenient way to take advantage of our proven training seminars from your laptop or desktop anywhere in the world. 

3. Schedule the CBT Exam

  • Create an account at Pearson Vue and schedule your exam. The CISSP exam is offered in English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese-Brazilian, and Spanish-Modern.     
  • Complete the Examination Agreement, attesting to the truth of your assertions regarding professional experience and legally committing to the adherence of the (ISC)² Code of Ethics.
  • Review the Candidate Background Questions.
  • Submit the examination fee.

4. Pass the Exam

Pass the CISSP examination with a scaled score of 700 points or greater. Read the Exam Scoring FAQs.

5. Complete the Endorsement Process

Once you are notified that you have successfully passed the examination, you will be required to subscribe to the (ISC)² Code of Ethics and have your application endorsed before the credential can be awarded. An endorsement form for this purpose must be completed and signed by an (ISC)² certified professional who is an active member, and who is able to attest to your professional experience. With the endorsement time limit, you are required to become certified within nine months of the date of your exam or become an Associate of (ISC)². If you do not become certified or an Associate of (ISC)² within nine months of the date of your exam, you will be required to retake the exam in order to become certified. (ISC)² can act as an endorser for you if you cannot find a certified individual to act as one. Please refer to the Endorsement Assistance Guidelines for additional information about the endorsement requirements.

6. Maintain the CISSP Certification

Recertification is required every three years, with ongoing requirements to maintain your credentials in good standing. This is primarily accomplished through continuing professional education (CPE) credits. CISSPs are required to earn and post a minimum of 40 CPE credits (of the 120 CPE credits required in the three-year certification cycle) and pay the annual maintenance fee (AMF) of US$85 during each year of the three-year certification cycle before the member’s certification or recertification annual anniversary date. For CISSPs who hold one or more concentrations, CPE credits submitted for the CISSP Concentration(s) will be counted toward the annual minimum CPE credits required for the CISSP. 

Audit Notice*

Passing candidates will be randomly selected and audited by (ISC)² prior to issuance of any certificate. Multiple certifications may result in a candidate being audited more than once.


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