Cisco Announced Certification Changes

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Cisco Makes Changes to CCDP and Associate-Level Certs



Cisco Systems Inc. has made some changes to its certification program.
To bring its network design credential, the Cisco Certified Design
Professional (CCDP) up to date, Cisco has added a new exam and course to
the program. In addition, Cisco announced a new recertification policy
for Associate-level certifications, the Cisco Certified Network
Associate (CCNA) and Cisco Certified Design Associate (CCDA).



The CCDP certification will now require a new exam, #642-871 ARCH. The
new course that goes along with exam #642-871 is Designing Cisco Network
Service Architectures. This course will replace the existing Cisco
Internetwork Design (CID) course and brings the CCDP certification
program up to date with the latest developments in network design and
technologies. The course and exam cover issues surrounding network
infrastructure, intelligent network services and network solutions.



The CCDP certification is Cisco’s intermediate-level design
certification, requiring candidates to earn the CCNA and CCDA before
taking the exams. In addition to exam #642-871, candidates must pass
exam #640-901 BSCI and #640-604, Switching. CCDP certification is valid
for three years. To recertify, certificants must take a single
recertification exam.



For its Associate-level certifications, the CCNA and CCDA, Cisco has
announced a new recertification policy, designed to help candidates who
demonstrate their additional skills by taking higher-level exams.
Recertification candidates can pass any new exam at the professional or
Cisco Qualified Specialist level to be recertified at the CCNA or CCDA
level. Only exams with the 642 prefix count toward recertification.
After passing these higher-level exams, the recertification will be good
for three years. CCNAs and CCDAs will still have the option of passing
the original certification exams to recertify.



To learn more about Cisco’s certification program, go to



U.S. Government Releases National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace

With the introduction of the Internet and rapid technology advances of
the past decades, the nature of our world has changed drastically. The
critical infrastructures of the United States, which includes public and
private organizations in numerous sectors, such as agriculture, water,
public health, information and telecommunications, energy,
transportation, banking and finance and more, and cyberspace is the
backbone of this critical infrastructure.



Following the events of Sept. 11, 2001, President George W. Bush’s
administration created the Homeland Security Department, and as a part
of this new effort of addressing security within the nation’s borders,
asked for a plan to secure cyberspace to ensure that the critical
infrastructures within the country were protected. The final version of
the National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace is now available for viewing
(see, and it asks for the cooperation
of both public and private institutions to help secure the backbone of
networks, servers, routers, switches and interconnections that are the
backbone of the critical infrastructures on which we rely.



According to the Executive Summary of the Strategy, the intent is to
“engage and empower Americans to secure the portions of cyberspace that
they own, operate, control or with which they interact.” To do this, the
Strategy offers instructions for the federal government departments and
agencies that have a role in cyberspace security. The Department of
Homeland Security is chief among these, but other departments are
affected as well. In addition, the strategy outlines steps that can be
taken by state and local governments, private companies and
organizations and individual citizens to improve overall cybersecurity.



Five priorities are listed in the Strategy:



* A National Cyberspace Security Response System
* A National Cyberspace Security Threat and Vulnerability Program
* A National Cyberspace Security Awareness and Training Program
* Securing Governments’ Cyberspace
* National Security and International Cyberspace Security Cooperation



Brainbench Salary Survey Shows Effect of Economy on Salary Outlooks

According to a new salary survey from Brainbench, the downtrodden
economy had a negative effect on IT workers’ salary increases in 2002,
as well as driving back the salary advances seen by women in 2001. The
“2002 Brainbench IT Salary Survey” shows that more than two-thirds of
the 6,000 respondents saw no salary increase or very slight increases in
2002, and expectations for salary increases in 2003 are down as well. 



The new salary survey is built on the responses of more than 6,000 IT
professionals in the United States who were chosen from Brainbench’s
database of more than 4.5 million users. Respondents represent many
industries and company sizes.



The good news is that professional certifications are still a great
asset for IT professionals. Those who earn certification are far more
likely to see salary increases over and above the industry average of 1
percent to 3 percent.



But salary increases felt the pinch of belt-tightening in the technology
sector in 2002. Sixty-seven percent of respondents said they received
increases of 3 percent of less in 2002, up from 52 percent in 2001.
Women in particular lost ground on the salary front in the technology
sector in 2002. The number of women earning salaries equal to those of
men fell in almost every salary category above $40,000.



Respondents don’t see things improving much in 2003 either. Forty-two
percent said they expect salary increases between 0 percent and 3
percent in 2003, and only 30 percent expect a 3 to 5 percent increase.
This is down from 2001, when more than half expect
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