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Certification Watch (Vol. 23, No. 11)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, an ISACA bloggers discusses the ongoing threat of ransomware, CompTIA's is rewarding the initiative of hard-working IT students, and more.

Ransomware: ISACA Blogger Preaches Preparation


Ransomware is still a potent threat.Ransomware was the hot new cyberthreat a few years back. Time passes, however, and hackers come up with newer and more outrageous methods of getting at your data. The novelty attracts attention from news media, and suddenly ransomware slides into the ignominious semi-anonymity of being just another way that the hackers get you, like phishing or a phone scam. Ransomware is, of course, still with us, as noted in a brand new post to the ISACA Now blog of cybersecurity and governance association ISACA. Guest blogger and cybersecurity engineer Mike Green uses a recent incident involving the Baltimore city agency that bills him for water usage as a springboard to talk about how ransomware attacks are no less plentiful than they used to be: 140 attacks on state and local government agencies in the United States were publicly disclosed just last year. The best time to take action against ransomware, of course, is before there's been an attack — and Green has some simple ideas about that. The Baltimore snafu was resolved, but it ended up costing state and local agencies more than $18 million. Just like your grandmother used to say: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.


EC-Council Reminds of Work-From-Home Security Challenges


As the world fights to slow the spread of COVID-19, unprecedented numbers of employees are suddenly working from home on an indefinite basis. In a new post this week to the blog of security training and certification organization EC-Council, the group's Europe director, Philip Blake, outlines both the known and potentially unforeseen dangers of official company business suddenly relying on a cobbled-together hodgepodge of every employee's home wi-fi network. As noted by Blake, "Wi-Fi hacking is a staple skill for Ethical Hackers and Penetration Testers around the world, and I’m sure less technical readers would be horrified to find out just how easy it is." If it's child's play for the good guys, then you know that the, shall we say, "non-ethical" hackers of the world can crack home networks just as easily. Blake lays out some steps that employers can take to the protect the wider-than-usual extent of companies' digital operations. More than anything, Blake writes, employees of large companies need basic cybersecurity training. Training is not foolproof, but it is an important and very helpful place to start.


Certification Magazine Shines Spotlight on CompTIA's Project+ Cert


Project management is one of the fastest-growing employment niches in IT, certainly in terms of the number of jobs available. Companies both within the IT realm and outside of it are eager to recruit professionals who can meld a sound grasp of project management principles with a mastery of IT basics. The prestigious Project Management Professional (PMP) credential is generally thought of as leading the certification charge, but also has a steep experience requirement. CompTIA's Project+ cert, on the other hand, is a great way to both learn project management and get a leg up on other entry-level candidates. Certification Magazine has been running a series of articles outlining the Project+ exam domains to help prospective project managers get a sense of what's covered by the exam. If you're interested in project management, then you'll find a lot to like here.


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