Are you a penetration tester or a ‘Licensed Penetration Tester’? To learn the difference between the two, it’s recommended that you look at them from an employer’s perspective. This article will give you a clear understanding of why employers prefer Licensed Penetration Testers over other penetration testing certifications.
There is no doubt that cybersecurity is one of the fastest-growing industries all over the world. PayScale, in an exclusive analysis to CNBC, has listed cybersecurity among the top 25 industries that offer higher employment potential in 2018.  Penetration testing is one of the crucial job roles in the security of any enterprise, and employers have a pre-set expectation of any person working as a pentester. According to Indeed, the average salary of a penetration tester is $118,441 per annum, and on the higher side, it is $214,000 yearly,  which shows the scope of higher earnings in this domain. (According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median wage for workers in the United States in the first quarter of 2019 was $47,060 per year for a 40-hour workweek. )
What is Penetration Testing?
Penetration testing is a crucial task where attacks are legally and ethically executed on a client’s IT infrastructure to identify points of weakness. It includes professionals testing and verifying new and existing systems, applications, and networks with consent from the targeted organization. Pentesting forms a vital part of security audits, and in the dawn of high-profile data breaches, organizations are keen to ensure the security of their infrastructure.
Licensed Penetration Tester (Master):
The world’s toughest penetration testing exam based on real-life situations, LPT (Master), takes the candidate through three levels, six hours each, where the candidate is challenged against a multi-layered network architecture with in-depth controls. The LPT (Master) is popular among recruiters because –
It demonstrates the mastery of advanced pen testing concepts and techniques.
The exam expects you to demonstrate skills of advanced pen testing tools and techniques which include SQL injection, exploit and payload customization, SSH tunneling, multi-level pivoting, privilege escalation, operating system vulnerabilities exploitation, host-based application exploitation, etc. You must exhibit the mastery of skills in a real-life scenario on the machine, applications, and networks. All this must be done on a ticking clock, with no time for second-guessing. To win, you must perform or get prepared to fail.
It is backed by ECCAPT
LPT (Master) exam is not easy; in fact, it is very tough. Hence, it is supported by an Advanced Penetration Testing course, which is built on the backbone of the EC-Council’s Advanced Penetration Testing Cyber Range (ECCAPT). ECCAPT is designed by experts with more than 25 years of penetration testing experience in various industries.
The program contains more than 180 machines with nearly 250 GB RAM and more than 4000 GB of storage. The machines are segregated in complex network ranges with multiple militarized and demilitarized zones facilitating learning and demonstration of penetration testing methodologies and tools. There are various ranges, and a typical range consists of 5 to 8 subnets where each of the subnets represents independent business entities with more than 15 Linux and Windows operating system versions.
The ranges are designed to prepare you with professional-level skills to identify the attack surface within a given timeframe and then gain access to the machines and escalate required privileges.
LPT (Master) is entirely online and remotely proctored
LPT (Master) exam is an entirely online exam where you are required to make appropriate decisions in a single attempt, as a second attempt will force the candidate to exceed the time-limit. EC-Council also acknowledges a major issue among credentialing bodies when it comes to the sanctity of the exam and so, every exam, although online, is remotely proctored to ensure that the credential holder is a proven, hands-on Licensed Penetration Tester.
LPT (Master) certified professionals are efficient in –
- Demonstrating a repeatable and measurable approach to penetration testing
- Exploiting vulnerabilities in OS like Windows and Linux
- Performing advanced penetration testing attacks and methodologies
- Performing privilege escalation to gain root access to any system
- Identifying and bypass IPS and endpoint perimeter protections
- Performing advanced post-exploitation and persistence
- Custom scripting on Python, Ruby, and Perl
- Pivoting internal source of access to leverage into the enterprise intranet
- Drafting a valid penetration testing report enclosed with tangible findings, and much more!
Two Significant Elements of LPT (Master)
Designed for Penetration Testers Seeking Excellence:
The LPT (Master) impersonates a real enterprise network where a penetration tester must deal with multiple firewalls, operating systems, web technologies, Demilitarized Zones (DMZ), network segments, and layers of security controls. The entire activity is to improve your competence so that you can intrude the toughest of the networks, gain access to avoid the worst of incidents, and write professionally accepted reports about the same.
Unless you learn what the industry wants, you cannot lead. The LPT (Master) is based on various current penetration testing methodologies, including EC-Council’s Licensed Penetration Testing methodology. The methodologies on which LPT (Master) is built are vertical centric and tend to cover broader prospects. The exam is based on the amalgamation of the best of these methodologies that challenges you to the highest scope of penetration testing.
LPT (Master) requires that the candidate demonstrates the mastery of skills when deploying advanced pen testing techniques and tools. It is a progression to EC-Council’s ECSA (Practical), for those who want to be recognized as elite penetration testing professionals. If you’re going to look forward to making a difference to your penetration testing career, then LPT (Master) is the title that will be a valuable addition.