CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP: Which One Is Better?

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April 19, 2022

The realm of information security has become a paramount concern for contemporary businesses. It is imperative that they have professionals who are adept in the field and backed by certified credentials. Among the most sought-after and renowned certifications in this domain are CompTIA Security+ and the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), or CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP. This blog aims to delve into a comprehensive comparison of these two certifications, examining factors such as eligibility criteria, examination structure, career prospects, and more. We will also shed light on the recognition and cost associated with each certification, ultimately guiding you in choosing the one that aligns with your aspirations.

On this website, we provide thousands of free CompTIA Security+ practice test questions and CISSP exam questions to help you get 100% ready for your coming exam. You also can take the practice questions to identify which cert is more suitable for you.

CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP: An Overview

What is CompTIA Sec+? What is CISSP?

What is CompTIA Security+?

comptia security+ vs cissp

The CompTIA Security+ certification is a highly valued accolade, recognized all over the world, that verifies an individual’s comprehension and ability to carry out the fundamental security tasks required in the field of information technology. This certification is specifically crafted for IT professionals who have a minimum of two years of network security experience and are striving to escalate their careers in the realm of information security. The scope of this certification is far-reaching, encompassing an array of subjects such as network security, access control, cryptography, and the threats and vulnerabilities faced by the IT industry.

While Security+ is more of an entry-level credential than others, it’s still one of the best security certifications in its own right. In fact, Security+ is a required certification by the US Department of Defense and is recognized by both the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Another benefit of Security+ is that it is vendor-neutral, choosing instead to focus on general security topics and technologies, without limiting the focus to any one vendor, and their approach.

What is CISSP?

The Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) is a beacon of distinction in the world of information security. (ISC)², a non-profit devoted to uplifting the information security field, offers this widely recognized and respected certification, considered the gold standard among information security professionals.

CISSP is a comprehensive certification that encompasses a broad range of information security topics, from access control to cryptography, security operations to risk management, and much more. To be certified, one must exhibit in-depth knowledge and experience in these areas, and demonstrate a thorough understanding of the concepts, principles, and practices of information security. The certification is aimed at showcasing that a professional possesses the necessary skills and expertise to design, manage, and oversee the implementation of information security programs.

Read more >> Next cert after Security+ You Should Get

Who Can Obtain the Certification

Although there are no strict prerequisites for CompTIA Security+, it is advisable for candidates to have at least two years of IT administration experience with a focus on security. Moreover, having CompTIA Network+ and CompTIA A+ certifications can be an added advantage for individuals aspiring to take the Security+ exam.

To be considered eligible for the CISSP certification, an individual must possess a minimum of five years of full-time professional work experience in two or more of the eight domains of the CISSP Common Body of Knowledge (CBK). The candidate must also pass a stringent exam that covers the eight domains of the CBK. The certification must be upheld every three years through continuing professional education and/or acquiring additional information security certifications.

Exam Format and Content Overview

The CompTIA Security+ exam comprises 90 questions, a mixture of multiple-choice and performance-based questions, all of which must be answered within a 90-minute time frame. The performance-based questions test a candidate’s hands-on skills in a simulated environment.

The following subjects are covered in the CompTIA Security+ exam:

  • Threats, Attacks, and Vulnerabilities
  • Technologies and Tools
  • Architecture and Design
  • Identity and Access Management
  • Risk Management
  • Cryptography and Public Key Infrastructure (PKI)
  • Compliance and Operational Security

The CISSP exam is a computer-based test consisting of 250 multiple-choice questions, to be completed within a span of 6 hours, administered at authorized testing centers globally.

The CISSP exam covers the eight domains of the CISSP CBK, including access control, cryptography, security operations, risk management, and others. The weight of each domain is decided by (ISC)² and is updated regularly to incorporate the most recent information security practices and technologies.

Career Opportunities Await Certified Security+ and CISSP Professionals

Job Roles

Security+ certified individuals are suitable for a vast range of job positions, including:

  • Security Analyst
  • Network Administrator
  • Systems Administrator
  • Security Consultant
  • Security Engineer
  • Information Security Officer

CISSP-certified professionals are in high demand and coveted by organizations of all sizes. The certification is suitable for individuals who aim to build a career in information security management, security operations, risk management, and related fields. Some common job titles for CISSP-certified professionals are information security manager, security analyst, security consultant, and information security auditor.

Salary Prospects

According to, the average salary for Security+ certified professionals is $74,000 per year, which may vary depending on the job role, location, and years of experience.

CISSP-certified professionals are highly compensated, and their salaries mirror their proficiency and experience in the field. (ISC)² states that the average salary for a CISSP certified professional in the United States is around $120,000 per year.

Career Advancement Opportunities

CompTIA Security+ is considered a foundational certification that paves the way for new career opportunities and provides a solid foundation for future certifications. Some popular certifications that individuals may consider after obtaining Security+ include CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP), Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), and Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

CISSP certification serves as a strong foundation for a successful and gratifying career in information security. The certification displays a deep understanding of the concepts, principles, and practices of information security and provides a robust platform for advancing to higher-level security positions within an organization. Continual professional education and obtaining additional information security certifications can assist CISSP-certified professionals in staying current with the latest developments in the field and increase their chances for career advancement.

What are the main differences between Comptia Security+ vs CISSP?

The CompTIA Security+ and CISSP certifications are both highly esteemed in the world of information security. While they both delve into subjects such as network security, incident response, and risk management, the CISSP places a stronger emphasis on leadership and management skills, while the Security+ is known for its technical content. These globally recognized certifications have been a staple in the field for several years.

comptia security+ vs cissp

CISSP vs Security+: Exam details

CompTIA Security+ can evaluate an individual’s capacity to handle the center security capacities. The CompTIA Security+ exam confirms that you simply have the ability to decide an organization’s security pose and uphold compelling security arrangements. It appears you how to ensure and track cross-breed situations like cloud, smartphone, and IoT. It educates you on how to run your commerce while following significant laws and controls, such as administration, hazard, and compliance benchmarks. It prepares understudies with the data and capacities to recognize, examine, and react to security occurrences and occasions.

The CompTIA Security+ (which is often known as the SY0-501) exam acts as a stepping stone toward intermediate-level cybersecurity certification. SY0-601 may be an exam advertised for CompTIA Security+. There are exactly 90 questions within the CompTIA Security+ exam. You have 90 minutes for the purpose of completing all the questions within the CompTIA Security+ exam. The passing score of this exam is exactly 750 (on a scale of from 100 to 900 points). It often costs you about USD 370 to require this CompTIA Security+ exam. English, Japanese, Portuguese, and Chinese forms of the CompTIA Security+ exam are accessible on the market.

On the other hand, the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (which is often known as the certification of CISSP) approves a data security practitioner’s wide specialized and administrative information and skill in arranging, building, and keeping up an organization’s general security pose. The CISSP exam comprises 100 to 150 choices and progresses with inventive questions. The exact testing time of the Certified Information Systems Security Professional exam is 3 hours. You wish to score 700 out of 1000 points for the purpose of successfully passing this IT certification exam. The fee for the exam is USD 699. This Certified Information Systems Security Professional exam is accessible within the English dialect.

CISSP vs Security+: Certification level

The CompTIA Security+ certification (which is often known as the SY0-501)  is an entry-level information security certification. The CompTIA Security+ certification is for apprentices who need to begin their careers in cybersecurity. This certification gives you the pattern information of security to handle security concerns. It is not required for you to own an earlier encounter to require this certification exam. There’s also no special prerequisite for the purpose of taking this information security certification exam.

The Certified Information Systems Security Professional (which is often known as the certification of CISSP) is an advanced-level information security certification. This certification is for experienced experts who have worked within the cybersecurity field for a long period of time. You wish at least 5 long times of aggregate paid full-time work encounters in 2 or more of the 8 Certified Information Systems Security Professional spaces.

CISSP vs Security+: Domains

The CompTIA Security+ exam comprises exactly 6 domains in terms of core security concerns. These domains include: 

  • Threats, Attacks, and Vulnerabilities (accounts for 21% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Technologies and Tools (accounts for 22% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Architecture and Design (accounts for 15% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Identity and Access Management (accounts for 16% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Risk Management (accounts for 14% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Cryptography and PKI (accounts for 12% of the total questions within the exam)

The CompTIA Security+ exam comprises exactly 8 domains in terms of the implementation, designing, and management of security programs. These domains include: 

  • Security and Risk Management (accounts for 15% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Asset Security (accounts for 10% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Security Architecture and Engineering (accounts for 13% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Communication and Network Security (accounts for 14% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Identity and Access Management (IAM) (accounts for 13% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Security Assessment and Testing (accounts for 12% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Security Operations(accounts for 13% of the total questions within the exam)
  • Software Development Security (accounts for 10% of the total questions within the exam)

CISSP vs Security+: Salary

Both the CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP are two IT certifications that are expected for totally distinctive sets of people. CompTIA Security+ is aiming for fledglings, and CISSP is expecting cybersecurity experts. So, these certifications have a distinctive compensation within the work advertised. The normal compensation of representatives who have CompTIA Security+ certification is approximately 135,510 USD/year, and the normal compensation of representatives who have CISSP certification is approximately 84,000 USD/year.

Read more >> CompTIA Sec+ Salary, Jobs and Certification

CISSP vs Security+: Occupation opportunities

A Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) is the extreme alternative for candidates who look for higher-level IT security parts. The candidates who win this credential illustrate top-notch cybersecurity aptitudes, authority qualities, and a foundational understanding of complex security techniques. The Certified Information Systems Security Professional certification centers on both administration and ground-level execution. That’s, a CISSP proficient can manage a cybersecurity venture right from the start.

During their preparation period, candidates for the Certified Information Systems Security Professional get presentations on large-scale real-world data and cybersecurity dangers. This makes a difference in creating a careful understanding of the nature and complexity of cybersecurity. Whereas they may as of now have created the base for the same, Certified Information Systems Security Professional preparing standardizes this information. Below are the prevalent parts you’ll be able to arrive with the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification:

  • IT Director/IT Manager
  • Security Director/Security Manager
  • CIO (stands for Chief Information Officer)
  • CISO (stands for Chief Information Security Officer)
  • Auditor
  • Security Architect/Network Architect
  • Security Systems Engineer/Security Analyst

CompTIA Security+ is for all trying candidates who look for entry-level security parts. In truth, it is one of the most secure alternatives for fledglings. Of all the reasons to select the CompTIA Security+ certification, what tops the list is its generalized center range; candidates require not to concentrate exclusively on security and innovation; instead, they can work on the common viewpoint of security. Bosses contract CompTIA Security+ experts the foremost for organizing and authoritative parts.

As the certification meets the necessities of DOD 8570 compliance in both specialized level 2 and administration level 1, the CompTIA Security+ certification is additionally the proper choice for trying government IT security experts. It is indeed commanded by the U.S. Division of Defense. Some of the well-known CompTIA Security+ employments you’ll be able to arrive at here:

  • Field Service Specialist
  • Technical Bolster Specialist
  • Associate Arrange Engineer
  • Desktop Back Administrator
  • Data Back Specialist
  • System Bolster Specialist
  • End-user Computing Specialist
  • Work area Analyst
  • Help Desk Specialist

Read more >> Best cyber security certifications you should know

Cost Analysis

The Security+ certification is comparatively more affordable, with an average cost of $349 for the exam, while the CISSP examination incurs an average cost of $749.

Recognition and Credibility

Both the CompTIA Security+ and CISSP certifications are highly regarded and recognized in the field of information security. CompTIA is a widely trusted organization in the IT industry, while (ISC)² is a well-established entity in the realm of information security. Both certifications are widely accepted by employers and provide ample career opportunities in the information security field.

Why should you take the Security+ or/and CISSP certification?

Since both Security+ and CISSP are internationally recognized and not specific to a certain security product, having this basic security certification allows you to have a wider range of career opportunities, including those in another country. The exam itself is practice and performance-based, making the acquired knowledge and skills more practical and applicable to your work. Here are the benefits of having a Security+ or/and CISSP certification:

Vendor-neutral certificate

Certification is distributor-neutral, which shows that you don’t have to focus on the cutting-edge technology and information security of a single supplier. Therefore, you can completely coordinate the common components of network security. Skills and knowledge and extensive skills and knowledge accumulated while gaining certifications make information security professionals and network administrators in great demand in the IT market. This gives you the knowledge and skills to find a handful of opportunities in this service industry.

Certified worldwide

CompTIA Security + and CISSP certifications are recognized worldwide as one of the basic information security certifications in the cybersecurity industry. Security+ and CISSP certifications are also approved by ANSI and are created to demonstrate an individual’s understanding to use skills and knowledge, knowledge and skills and capabilities essential to ISO compliance 17024.

Widen career opportunities

Cybersecurity professionals are the dream of organizations deploying in the private and public sectors. CompTIA Security+ and CISSP certifications give you an edge to address and handle network administration and information security obligations and responsibilities. With this recognition, you can completely receive many jobs with many different services.

Chance to have a higher income

Professionals with Security+ and CISSP certifications have a better chance of receiving higher salaries than their uncertified colleagues. It should also be taken into account, however, that there are other factors that determine salary action, and these factors correlate with your level of experience and recognition.

Opportunity to learn and grow

Before you can fully earn the certificate, you will have to research and investigate the potential and content of the exam. After important preparation, you must complete the exam. During the exam preparation process, you will learn a lot about cybersecurity. Furthermore, you will gain knowledge and skills and skills and knowledge that will benefit you to become a better security professional. This is why hiring managers always look after professionals with these credentials. Certifications are evidence of your qualifications and knowledge and skills in the job industry.

Opportunity to work anywhere in the world

One notable benefit of earning CompTIA Security+ and/or CISSP certification is that it is recognized, trusted, and approved worldwide. Wherever you want to work, this voucher can completely open the door for you.

CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP: Preparation and Study Resources

Achieving either the CompTIA Security+ or the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification entails not only a wealth of knowledge and practical experience but also a well-crafted study plan. Here, we’ll delve into a variety of resources and tips to help you navigate your journey toward these coveted certifications.

Official Study Aids for Security+ and CISSP

Both CompTIA and (ISC)², the organization responsible for CISSP, offer their own official study materials, which encompass study guides, mock exams, and other aids to help you prepare for the actual exams. Such official resources offer the most accurate and up-to-date information, thereby serving as a valuable asset to anyone pursuing these certifications.

Third-party Study Resources

Beyond the official study materials, an array of third-party resources are available to assist you in your exam preparation. These might include online classes, study groups, mock exams, and other learning aids. Some of these resources come at no cost while others require an investment. When evaluating third-party resources, it’s critical to seek out those that have received positive reviews, are credible, and provide a thorough comprehension of the exam content.

Study Tactics and Approaches for Both Certifications

As you embark on preparing for either certification, it’s crucial to have a structured study plan, make the most of multiple resources, and engage in hands-on exercises. Simulating the exam conditions will help you become familiar with the actual testing environment. Maintaining organization and taking periodic breaks are also essential for focusing and avoiding burnout. Joining a study group with others preparing for the same certification can also be a valuable way to stay motivated and collaborate on resources.

The Significance of Hands-on Experience and Real-world Scenarios

While studying is crucial, hands-on experience in the field is just as important. This can encompass working with real-world scenarios, practicing hands-on exercises, and participating in the security community to build your skills and network. This hands-on experience not only enhances your understanding of the concepts you’re studying but also showcases your capabilities to potential employers.

CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP: Practical Experience and Continuing Education

Practical experience and ongoing education are crucial elements for a thriving career in information security. Both CompTIA Security+ and CISSP certifications emphasize the significance of practical knowledge and continual learning in order to maintain their credibility and value. In this section, we delve into the vital role of practical experience, continuing education necessities, and the various avenues to gain practical experience and further education.

To preserve their worth, both CompTIA Security+ and CISSP certifications mandate ongoing education. The Security+ certification necessitates earning Continuing Education Units (CEUs) every three years, while CISSP demands the completion of 120 CEUs over the three-year cycle. These requirements ensure that certified individuals stay current with the latest advancements in the field and retain their certification’s relevance.

Real-World Applications of Security+ and CISSP

The practical applications of Security+ and CISSP are numerous and diverse. Take for instance, a Security+ certified professional who finds themselves at the forefront of safeguarding a company’s confidential information by installing firewalls and implementing network security measures to ward off potential unauthorized access. Conversely, a CISSP certified expert might be tasked with the development and implementation of a robust information security program for a large organization.

Another scenario sees a Security+ professional entrusted with the management of an organization’s incident response plan, tasked with swiftly responding to security breaches and safeguarding sensitive data. On the other hand, a CISSP professional might take charge of risk assessments, security policy formulation, and ensuring compliance with industry regulations and standards.

It is crucial for both Security+ and CISSP-certified professionals to have a wealth of real-world experience. These certifications demand a hands-on comprehension of information security concepts, practices, and technologies. Without practical experience, the knowledge and skills garnered from these certifications are rendered useless, as they are unable to be applied to actual job responsibilities.

The acquisition of hands-on experience is paramount to success in both Security+ and CISSP. Such experience grants individuals the opportunity to grasp the real-world application of information security concepts and technologies. It also furnishes them with practical skills and knowledge, critical success factors in the information security industry.

CompTIA Security+ vs CISSP: Which one is right for you?

Choosing between CompTIA Security+ and CISSP can be a challenging task, as both of these certifications have their unique advantages and drawbacks. To determine which one is right for you, you’ll have to consider several factors, including your background, career aspirations, and budget.

Factors for Choosing Between Security+ and CISSP

  • Career Objectives: If you’re striving to further your career in information security, then CISSP is a more well-known and established certification. Conversely, if you’re a beginner in this field or seeking an entry-level certification, then Security+ might be a more suitable option.
  • Professional Experience: Acquiring the CISSP certification requires at least five years of professional experience in information security. In contrast, Security+ has less stringent requirements and might be a more accessible choice for individuals with less experience.
  • Exam Format: CISSP’s examination is more comprehensive and longer than Security+. The CISSP exam includes 250 questions and takes six hours to complete, while the Security+ exam is 90 minutes long and contains 90 questions.
  • Cost: CISSP certification is more costly compared to Security+. The cost of CISSP certification encompasses the price of the exam, study materials, and continuing education. In contrast, Security+ certification is more budget-friendly and might be a better option for those who are cost-conscious.

Recommendation for Those Interested in Both Certifications

If you’re interested in both certifications, you could start by obtaining the Security+ certification and then progress to the CISSP certification. This approach will allow you to establish a solid foundation in information security and gain hands-on experience before tackling the more challenging CISSP exam.

Aligning Certification Goals with Career Goals

It’s vital to align your certification goals with your career goals. If you’re seeking to advance your career in information security, then CISSP might be the best fit. On the other hand, if you’re starting out in the field or searching for an entry-level certification, then Security+ might be a more suitable option. You should carefully consider your background, experience, and budget when making a decision between these two certifications.

In conclusion, both CompTIA Security+ and CISSP are deemed valuable certifications for individuals who wish to embark on a career in information security. While each certification boasts its own strengths, the ultimate decision should hinge on personal goals, background, and career objectives. It’s crucial to take into consideration the eligibility requirements, exam content, career opportunities, and the cost of each certification before making a choice. Regardless of the certification path you choose, continual learning and hands-on experience are crucial components in building a successful and fulfilling career in information security.