GSEC advice

jwdk19jwdk19 MemberPosts: 65Member ■■■□□□□□□□
Hi all. I wanted to get some advice. Recently our "big brother" organization (National Electric Coop) purchased a bulk amount of SANS vouchers. I was signed up for the SEC401 course (on-demand). If given the option, I would have chosen to take a higher level course. However, I am thankful for the free voucher and am not complaining at all. The course was paid for in full but if I want to take the actual certification I will need to pay out of pocket. My question is would it be worth spending the money to get the certification? I currently hold the Security+, eJPT and CySA+ as far as security certs go. My current position is Systems & Security Admin. If I go for the cert or not I will and have learned a lot from the course. Just curious if you all think it would add value to have the GSEC cert on my resume considering my other certs and experience. 


Thanks all! 

Comments

  • LonerVampLonerVamp OSCP, GCFA, GWAPT, CISSP, OSWP, CCNA Cyber Ops, Sec+, Linux+, AWS CCP, CCSK Posts: 410Member ■■■■■■□□□□
    How many years of Systems & Security Admin? Me personally, I think the GSEC is appropriate for those at the Security+ level or 0-3 years of solid experience. You could wait until seeing the material before deciding, as well. I'd say if you feel like you learn a good deal, then the cert may be a nice way to illustrate that to others.

    On LinkedIn, you could always list it as a course you've taken, even if you don't sit for the cert.

    If you feel like the cert on your resume will pay for the $600(?) cost for a take, I'd say feel free.

    Security Engineer/Analyst/Geek, Red & Blue Teams
    OSCP, GCFA, GWAPT, CISSP, OSWP, CCNA Cyber Ops, Sec+, Linux+, AWS CCP, CCSK
    2019 goals: GWAPT, Linux+, (possible: SLAE, CCSK, AWS SA-A)
  • MrsWilliamsMrsWilliams Junior Member Posts: 179Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    edited November 15
    jwdk19 said:
    Hi all. I wanted to get some advice. Recently our "big brother" organization (National Electric Coop) purchased a bulk amount of SANS vouchers. I was signed up for the SEC401 course (on-demand). If given the option, I would have chosen to take a higher level course. However, I am thankful for the free voucher and am not complaining at all. The course was paid for in full but if I want to take the actual certification I will need to pay out of pocket. My question is would it be worth spending the money to get the certification? I currently hold the Security+, eJPT and CySA+ as far as security certs go. My current position is Systems & Security Admin. If I go for the cert or not I will and have learned a lot from the course. Just curious if you all think it would add value to have the GSEC cert on my resume considering my other certs and experience. 


    Thanks all! 
    Personally, I started high then went low with regards to SANS course numbers. 

    When you start trying to do Work Study and stuff, you kinda take what they give you. For me, except classes that don't have certification exam attempts Ha Ha Ha

    Ok, now let me get back on track. 

    The on-demand is 7k. The certification attempt which provides two practice tests (about 100'ish bucks a piece) is 10% of that 7k. So, realistically on some quick math, the certification attempt costs about 500 bucks.

    If someone offered to sell you a 70,000 automobile for 7k worth of work that has to be done, would you take it?

    I said that to say, you already have received a heck of a (free) discount. I don't see why you wouldn't spend the money on the certification attempt. I personally wouldn't spend hours upon hours going through videos, labs, and books to not at least attempt some sort of an exam. 

    I would not compare, eJPT, Security+, and CySA to GIAC Exams. That is called disrespect around these parts, you might get a 45 day ban for bringing it up LOL. What I will say is, if you have a firm understanding of the Security+ topics, a good portion of the SANS books will just be refresher training. The exam is not hard, if you have a firm understanding of the Security+ topics. Those topics are the foundation to career success. 


    Yes, the GSEC certification will add value. What I do and I suggest you do is, not look at how the certification will benefit the current job. You already hold that position, you already have the job. Look at how the certification will benefit you in another role later on down the road. I don't do anything cert wise for my current role, I am always looking at how I can be competitive for my next role. I have a job, not a career. A career is staying10-20 years. A careers is where you retire after X amount of years. People don't stay at jobs 10-20 years, so I have to think 2-5 years from now where I want to be..
  • jwdk19jwdk19 Member Posts: 65Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the reply Loner.

    15 years total IT experience. Half of that was in DoD environments. Everything from Sat comms, Submarine comms, Microwave, as well as Desktop/Sysadmin/Network Tech/Info Assurance smorgasbord lol. (Military and DoD IT contractor).

    5 years total Sysadmin experience and 2 years Secadmin. My current role is hybrid (60/40). Hope to eventually move into a position that is exclusively Infosec based. 
  • jwdk19jwdk19 Member Posts: 65Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    edited November 15
    jwdk19 said:
    Hi all. I wanted to get some advice. Recently our "big brother" organization (National Electric Coop) purchased a bulk amount of SANS vouchers. I was signed up for the SEC401 course (on-demand). If given the option, I would have chosen to take a higher level course. However, I am thankful for the free voucher and am not complaining at all. The course was paid for in full but if I want to take the actual certification I will need to pay out of pocket. My question is would it be worth spending the money to get the certification? I currently hold the Security+, eJPT and CySA+ as far as security certs go. My current position is Systems & Security Admin. If I go for the cert or not I will and have learned a lot from the course. Just curious if you all think it would add value to have the GSEC cert on my resume considering my other certs and experience. 


    Thanks all! 
    Personally, I started high then went low with regards to SANS course numbers. 

    When you start trying to do Work Study and stuff, you kinda take what they give you. For me, except classes that don't have certification exam attempts Ha Ha Ha

    Ok, now let me get back on track. 

    The on-demand is 7k. The certification attempt which provides two practice tests (about 100'ish bucks a piece) is 10% of that 7k. So, realistically on some quick math, the certification attempt costs about 500 bucks.

    If someone offered to sell you a 70,000 automobile for 7k worth of work that has to be done, would you take it?

    I said that to say, you already have received a heck of a (free) discount. I don't see why you wouldn't spend the money on the certification attempt. I personally wouldn't spend hours upon hours going through videos, labs, and books to not at least attempt some sort of an exam. 

    I would not compare, eJPT, Security+, and CySA to GIAC Exams. That is called disrespect around these parts, you might get a 45 day ban for bringing it up LOL. What I will say is, if you have a firm understanding of the Security+ topics, a good portion of the SANS books will just be refresher training. The exam is not hard, if you have a firm understanding of the Security+ topics. Those topics are the foundation to career success. 


    Yes, the GSEC certification will add value. What I do and I suggest you do is, not look at how the certification will benefit the current job. You already hold that position, you already have the job. Look at how the certification will benefit you in another role later on down the road. I don't do anything cert wise for my current role, I am always looking at how I can be competitive for my next role. I have a job, not a career. A career is staying10-20 years. A careers is where you retire after X amount of years. People don't stay at jobs 10-20 years, so I have to think 2-5 years from now where I want to be..



     No doubt - CompTIA and Elearnsecurity are nowhere near the level of GIAC. I am about 50% of the way through the GSEC course. I agree with you on preparing for the next role. Honestly I average around 3 years per role. Employers tend to be keen on paying less for the same skillset when promoting internally vs hiring outside the organization to fill a position. I've adjusted accordingly lol
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Posts: 1,928Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    edited November 19
    jwdk19 said:
    The course was paid for in full but if I want to take the actual certification I will need to pay out of pocket. My question is would it be worth spending the money to get the certification?

    In my opinion, my answer is yes, just make sure you sign up for the certifications attempt during classes, it will only cost you $650 instead of a much higher cost if you wait. I'm kina in the same boat, I currently hold three GIAC certifications, none of which I currently need for my current position. Sure I can save myself $1,200 every four years by not renewing them, but what are certifications really anyway? They are insurance. Having desirable, current certifications make you much more marketable in the job market. Just look at the government.  You can be a complete moron, but having one security certification, one technical certification and a security clearance, YOUR HIRED! Sure I can probably finish our my working career where I work, learning the bare minimal to keep my job. I could also get rid of my house fire insurance, cause after all what are the odds my house is going to burn down? Same goes true with my car insurance, long as I drive careful, I will not get stopped by the police or get into an accident, think of all the money i could save! 

    In short yes, you could pay the odds and do without insurance, but is it really worth the risk. You employer is paying the bulk of the cost, why wouldn't you just get the certification, for just in case.           

    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • jwdk19jwdk19 Member Posts: 65Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the advice. Very good points.
  • bigdogzbigdogz Posts: 698Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Yes.
    @TechGromit is right sign up for the exam during the class.
    The SANS certifications are getting more popular and it will give you a boost over those who don't have a SANS certification when you are looking for a new job.
  • beadsbeads Senior Member Posts: 1,456Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Doing a SANS cert (any) can be a humbling experience but a worthwhile experience at that. Certs are generally more in demand for entry to lower level positions and GSEC certainly fits the bill here. Not to mention many certificates are expensive in nature and represents a financial commitment by the cert holder. Thus far it appears you may be looking a gift horse in the mouth and asking for new horse shoes as well.
  • yoba222yoba222 Posts: 1,068Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Tough one. If you plan on going for GSE, you'll have completed one of the three needed legs -- for a "stackable" cert arguably, albeit a very expensive to obtain one. You already have Sec+ and CySA+, so I don't see value on the resume adding a redundant GSEC. How much out of pocket are we talking? For me the GCIH I believe was somewhere around $1000 IIRC. I think I'd do it (GSEC) for a couple hundred bucks, but probably not for $1200 personally.
    2017: GCIH | LFCS
    2018: CySA+ | PenTest+ |CCNA CyberOps
    2019: VHL 20 boxes
    2020: OSCP eCPPT OSCP eCPPT (a bit undecided)
  • bigdogzbigdogz Posts: 698Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    I gotta agree with @beads again.
    The class is expensive and while you have to pay out of pocket for an expensive exam, it is better to have it and not need it opposed to needing it and not having it. The company took you more than half way. Just finish it and worry about the CPE's by obtaining the GCIH down the road. It will show your management that you are motivated and will likely give you another class.
  • jwdk19jwdk19 Member Posts: 65Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    edited November 29
    @yoba222 I checked the pricing - 700 for the exam attempt. Considering applying that 700 towards the CISSP around feb/march timeframe.
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