Delivering Hands-on Enterprise Security Skills

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Security is the No. 1 priority of IT professionals, according to a recent IDC report. Of nearly 1,000 IT managers surveyed by IDC in July 2003, 40 percent rated security as their highest priority.


The Security Certified Program (SCP) was designed to enable the development of hands-on enterprise security skills required by businesses today. The SCP is designed around the job roles of information security professionals and security architects. Today, the SCP is delivered in 26 states in the United States and 36 countries. The training is delivered by Authorized Training Partners (ATPs). ATPs are approved on a case-by-case basis to ensure the quality of the program and its delivery.


SCP Credentials
The SCP consists of two credentials:


• Security Certified Network Professional (SCNP)
• Security Certified Network Architect (SCNA)


The SCNP program focuses on the two critical areas of security that are the foundational defense of networks: firewalls and intrusion detection. The up-to-date ecurity lessons and the hands-on labs bring the security networking world to the candidates.


The SCNP requires two exams, #SCO-411 and #SCO-402, validating the foundational skills required by security professionals. These skills include intrusion detection systems design and implementation, network traffic signatures, security policy, risk analysis, firewall design and implementation, router security, operating system security, advanced knowledge of the TCP suite and network security basics. The prerequisite for the SCNP certification is Security+ or equivalent xperience.


The SCNA is focused on the advanced security skills and technologies of building trusted networks. Concepts are reinforced with hands-on labs that are structured in a multi-vendor environment.


The SCNA credential requires candidates to pass two exams, #SCO-501 and #SCO-502, covering topics such as law and legislation issues, forensics, wireless security, securing e-mail, biometrics, strong authentication, digital certificates and digital signatures, PKI policy and architecture, and cryptography.


SCP Training
SCP training is organized around each of the two courses that address the requirements related to the SCNP and SCNA credentials. SCNP students may consider the following two courses:



  • Hardening the Infrastructure (HTI)
  • Network Defense and Countermeasures (NDC)


Each course is five days in duration and is delivered by ATPs across the United States and worldwide.


Students looking to pursue the SCNA credential may consider the following two courses:



  • Advanced Security Implementation (ASI)
  • Enterprise Security Solutions (ESS)


Each course is five days in duration and is delivered by ATPs across the United States and worldwide.


SCP Exams
Each SCP certification involves two exams. The SCP exams are available through any worldwide Pearson VUE testing center or Thomson Prometric testing center.
A candidate becomes an SCNP by successfully completing two exams, #SC0-402 and #SC0-411. A candidate becomes an SCNA by successfully completing two exams, #SC0-501 and #SC0-502. All exams except #SCO-502 will test the candidate with 60 questions. The time for each exam except #SCO-502 is 90 minutes.


The #SCO-502 exam is 100 percent scenario-based. It includes 30 questions and has a duration of 120 minutes. This is one security exam that will challenge the best. It is unique and provides an opportunity for security practitioners to distinguish themselves by becoming certified as SCNAs.


The SCNP exams #SC0-402 and #SC0-411 are $150 (U.S.), and the SCNA exams, #SC0-501 and #SC0-502 are $180 (U.S.).


For more information about SCP exams, please visit:


SCP Practice Exams
MeasureUp is the exclusive practice test provider offering certification preparation exams for the Security Certified Program (SCP). The MeasureUp SCP practice exams include detailed explanations and references for every test question. There are also several options available to prepare for the SCP exam. These include:



  • Study mode
  • Certification mode
  • Custom mode
  • Adaptive mode
  • Missed Questions mode
  • Non-Duplicate Question mode


These test modes allow individuals to use the SCP practice exam products to their maximum potential as learning and preparation tools. To receive 15 percent off all SCP practice exams, enter the following coupon code in the coupon field of the MeasureUp shopping cart: SCPMUP032002 (code is case-sensitive). Please note that this coupon is for those users being referred from MeasureUp reserves the right to discontinue this coupon code at any time.
MeasureUp practice tests are designed to appropriately balance the questions over each technical area covered by the SCP exams. More information on the SCP practice exams is available at


SCP Authorized Training Partners (ATP)
With Authorized Training Partners (ATPs) in 36 countries, the SCP has a large global training partner network. Training is available through ATPs in countries that include China, India, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Australia, Russia, Mexico, Vietnam, Singapore and many others. SCP ATP partners include New Horizons, Computer Education Services Corp., Boston University, Babbage Simmel, ExecuTrain, GFN, Informatics, NC State University and many others.
For a complete list of all SCP ATPs worldwide, visit


SCP Course Materials
SCP course materials are available through the SCP e-store at SCP content is also available through Element K, at You do not have to attend an SCP training course to get certified. One option that you may consider is to purchase the training materials and the exam voucher through the SCP site and prepare for the exam on your own time. We recommend that you have adequate access to equipment so you may practice the hands-on labs that are associated with each course.


To conclude, I have two recommendations. The first is for security practitioners—I would encourage you to pursue the SCNA credential. This is one credential that stands out because it addresses many current, critical security challenges in the areas of wireless security, digital signatures and certificates, biometrics and forensics. The SCNA scenario-based exam is a masterpiece. So go beyond just common knowledge; go for the program that delivers hands-on, enterprise security skills.
For IT professionals looking to specialize in the area of security, I would encourage you to follow this road map: Start with CompTIA’s Network+ and Security+ certification programs, then pursue SCP’s SCNP and SCNA credentials. If you are looking to go further, any vendor-specific security certification, such as those from Microsoft, Cisco, Check Point or others, should be considered seriously.


Uday O. Ali Pabrai, Security+, CISSP, CHSS, chief executive of, consults extensively in the areas of enterprise security and HIPAA. Pabrai, author of the best-selling “Getti

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