GIAC Information Security Certification - Program Overview
GIAC (Global Information Assurance Certification) was founded in 1999 to validate the skills of information security professionals. The purpose of GIAC is to provide assurance that a certified individual has the knowledge and skills necessary for a practitioner in key areas of computer, information and software security. GIAC certifications are trusted by thousands of companies and government agencies, including the United States National Security Agency (NSA).
GIAC certifications address a range of skill sets including entry-level information security and broad-based security essentials, as well as advanced subject areas like:
- Intrusion detection
- Incident handling
- Firewalls and perimeter protection
- Hacker techniques
- Windows and Unix operating system security
- Secure software and application coding
GIAC certifications are unique because they measure specific skills and knowledge areas rather than general infosec knowledge. Although there are other entry-level certifications available, GIAC offers the only certifications that cover advanced technical subject areas.
GIAC certifications are valid for four years. Students must review new course information and retake the exams every four years in order to remain certified. Different education and certification tracks are available for the following categories:
- Cyber Defense
- Penetration Testing
- Incident Response and Forensics
- Management, Audit, Legal
- Industrial Control Systems
GIAC was the first true technical infosec certification. The first GIAC professionals were certified in February of 2000, and just under 1,000 candidates were certified in our first year alone. As of March, 2002, we had certified over 3,000 individuals and currently to date, 93,976 GIAC certifications have been issued.
There are no prerequisites required to begin any of the GIAC certification attempts, however we highly recommend taking a training course before your test. Even experienced infosec professionals will benefit from a review of various subject areas before the exam. Certification attempts have a 4 month access window, giving candidates adequate time to prepare for the certification exam.
If you're ready to sign up for a certification exam, follow the instructions below:
- Go to: The GIAC Certification Exam Sign-up Page
- Fill in your payment information and select the certification attempt you wish to register for. Shortly afterwards submitting your registration form, you will receive an email confirming your order and providing details on the certification attempt process.
- Check the box next to your desired certification, and scroll to the bottom of the page. Click "Proceed".
- Fill in your payment information and complete the process. You will receive a confirmation email shortly with details on how you can take the exam.
The GIAC certification program only offers certification attempts to individual candidates, including verification of individual identity at multiple steps. SANS is the sole source for GIAC certification exams and exam vouchers. GIAC does not permit the resale or transfer of any certification registration or GIAC exam voucher. Each certification attempt purchased is non-transferable and any certification application / registration instance is intrinsically tied to one and only one individual account.