Security Certification: GISF

Security Certification:

GIAC Information Security Fundamentals (GISF)


Proficient infosec administrators can network well on the eight layer of the ISO model (political) and the material contained in this track will help them to bridge the gap that often exists between managers and system administrators. GISF candidates will learn and be able to demonstrate key concepts of information security including: understanding the threats and risks to information and information resources, identifying best practices that can be used to protect them, and learning to diversify our protection strategy.


Professionals who need to hit the ground running and need an overview of information assurance. Managers, Information Security Officers, and System Administrators who need an overview of risk management and defense in depth techniques. Anyone who writes, implements, or must adhere to policy, disaster recovery or business continuity.

*No Specific training is required for any GIAC certification. There are many sources of information available regarding the certification objectives' knowledge areas. Practical experience is an option; there are also numerous books on the market covering Computer Information Security. Another option is any relevant courses from training providers, including SANS.*


  • 1 proctored exam
  • 75 questions
  • Time limit of 2 hours
  • Minimum Passing Score of 70%


GIAC reserves the right to change the specifications for each certification without notice. Based on a scientific passing point study, the passing point for the passing point for the GISF exam has been determined to be 70.7% for all candidates receiving access to their certification attempts on or after 02/10/2011. To verify the format of your current certification attempt, please read the Certification Information found in your portal account at


Certifications must be renewed every 4 years. Click here for details.


NOTE: All GIAC exams are delivered through proctored test centers and must be scheduled in advance.
GIAC certification attempts will be activated in your GIAC account after your application has been approved and according to the terms of your purchase. Details on delivery will be provided along with your registration confirmation upon payment. You will receive an email notification when your certification attempt has been activated in your account. You will have 120 days from the date of activation to complete your certification attempt. GIAC exams must be proctored through Pearson VUE. Please click the following link for instructions on How to Schedule Your GIAC Proctored Exam GIAC exams are delivered online through a standard web browser.


Bulletin (Part 2 of Candidate Handbook)

Exam Certification Objectives & Outcome Statements

The topic areas for each exam part follow:

Attacks and Countermeasures
The candidate will demonstrate an understanding of different attack scenarios and methodologies, attacks targeting each OSI layer and countermeasures used to prevent those attacks.
Building Security Policies
The candidate will show a basic understanding of building, implementing, communicating, and assessing security policies.
Cryptosystems, cryptography, and algorithms
The candidate will demonstrate a basic understanding of cryptosystems, cryptography, hashing, digital signatures, and certificates.
Defense in Depth
The candidate will demonstrate a basic understanding of the technologies used to defend data at multiple points within a network.
Designing and Implementing Networks
The candidate will demonstrate an understanding of the components of a network and how the components are implemented and managed within a secure network infrastructure.
Fundamental Security Concepts
The candidate will show an understanding of fundamental security concepts, risk, and principles that mitigate risk.
Networking and Routing Concepts
The candidate will demonstrate an understanding of the the OSI model, networking protocols, and other network-related concepts.
Risk & Vulnerability Assessment & Management
The candidate will show a fundamental understanding of risk management, policy requirements, and risk/policy assessment.
Security as a Process
The candidate will demonstrate an understanding of the processes involved in analyzing and addressing security risks with prevention, controls, and auditing.
Wireless Technologies
The candidate will demonstrate a basic understanding of wireless technologies, risks, and mitigation techniques.

Where to Get Help

Training is available from a variety of resources including on line, course attendance at a live conference, and self study.

Practical experience is another way to ensure that you have mastered the skills necessary for certification. Many professionals have the experience to meet the certification objectives identified.

Finally, college level courses or study through another program may meet the needs for mastery.

The procedure to contest exam results can be found at