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Certification Watch (Vol. 21, No. 1)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, CertMag ushers in the new year with a hot-off-the-presses Salary Survey 75 list, Microsoft Learning expands the Microsoft Professional Program, and more.

Certification Magazine Releases New Salary Survey 75 List


There's a new Salary Survey 75 list from Certification Magazine.How do you narrow down a list of more than 900 IT certifications to just 75 heavy hitters? (By the way, did you know that there are more than 900 IT certifications out there? Because holy smokes that's a lot of certs.) The hard working folks at Certification Magazine don't draw those lines themselves. That's left to good, old-fashioned natural selection. While the certifications that do appear on the brand new Salary Survey 75 list are ranked according to average annual salary among U.S. credential holders in 2017, getting on the list in the first place is more of a participation award. As noted in the introduction to the list, the 75 certs that do end up getting weighed and measured (so to speak) are the ones that are held by the highest numbers of individual survey respondents. Amazon Web Services ascended to the top of this year's list, with its Amazon Web Services Certified Solutions Architect – Associate credential beating out a fistful of cybersecurity certifications to land at No. 1.


ISACA Blogger Offers Security Tips to D-I-Y Web Developers


In 2018, you don't have be a certified technical genius to create a website. And you don't even have to be a genius to protect your new site from attackers. Just before the calendar rolled over from December to January, blogger Larry Alton took to the ISACA Now Blog to offer some sage cybersecurity advice to anyone contemplating putting together a new website. Alton's list proceeds from the assumption that most developers will build their site using a software tool, a shortcut that has become increasingly common. Your first task, then, is to do a little research and select a tool that offers a strong foundation on which to build. Alton says to pay particular attention to reviews from other users when determining which tool to use. If you've fretted over or even just read about the trend of jobs being lost to automation, here's a subtle example. As software used to achieve a variety of digital ends becomes increasingly user friendly, the role of skilled professionals in previously technical exercises is bound to diminish.


CompTIA Identifies Tech Skills Required to Stay Relevant


Speaking of losing ground in the face of automation, one of the articles tech industry association CompTIA used to close out 2017 at its IT Career News blog discusses critical skill areas to focus on for IT pros committed to staying relevant in the near future. CompTIA executive James Stanger identifies five job roles that are likely to require human workers for a number of years to come. If you already have the skills to be a cybersecurity analyst, network engineer, project manager, vulnerability assessment manager (penetration tester), or technical support specialist, then your seat on the express train to relevance should be secure in the immediate future. If you're worried about losing out to automation — and Stanger provides guidance to help identify job roles in danger of becoming obsolete — then you may want to take a long look at which certifications could help you transition to a different position.