Are you ready for the CompTIA PenTest+ PT0-002 Exam?
The CompTIA PenTest+ certification is a vendor-neutral, internationally targeted validation of intermediate-level penetration testing (or pen testing) knowledge and skills. It focuses on the latest pen testing techniques, attack surfaces, vulnerability management, post-delivery, and compliance tasks.
The skills covered by CompTIA PenTest+ help companies comply with regulations, such as PCI-DSS and NIST 800-53 Risk Management Framework (RMF), which require pen tests, vulnerability assessments, and reports. CompTIA PenTest+ is approved under the Department of Defense (DoD) Directive 8140/8570.01-M and under ANSI/ISO standard 17024.
IT Jobs Related to CompTIA PenTest+
As cyberattacks continue to grow, more IT job roles are tasked with pen testing and vulnerability management to address today’s cyberthreats. Updates to CompTIA PenTest+ reflect those skills and prepare you to test and manage a broader attack surface that includes cloud, hybrid environments, and internet of things (IoT) devices for vulnerabilities. Organizations must be proactive in preventing the next cyberattack.
The primary CompTIA PenTest+ job roles are similar to the previous version, as the core skills requirements for these jobs have not significantly changed over time:
- Penetration Tester
- Security Consultant
As more cybersecurity job roles are tasked with identifying vulnerabilities and remediation techniques across broader surfaces, the following job roles can also benefit from a CompTIA PenTest+ certification:
- Cloud Penetration Tester
- Web App Penetration Tester
- Cloud Security Specialist
- Network and Security Specialist
- Information Security Engineer
- Security Analyst
CompTIA PenTest+ Exam Domains
The exam domains covered in CompTIA PenTest+ PT0-001 and PT0-002 are not vastly different, as they are still relevant to the job roles, but you will see some slight changes.
- We changed the name of exam domain 2.0 from Information Gathering and Vulnerability Identification to Information Gathering and Vulnerability Scanning.
- We also swapped the order of two domains – what was formerly 5.0 Reporting and Communication is now 4.0, (with the same name), and what was formerly 4.0 Penetration Testing Tools is now 5.0 Tools and Code Analysis.
However, the new CompTIA PenTest+ (PT0-002) focuses on the most up to date and current skills needed for the following tasks:
- Planning and scoping a penetration testing engagement
- Understanding legal and compliance requirements
- Performing vulnerability scanning and penetration testing using appropriate tools and techniques, and then analyzing the results
- Producing a written report containing proposed remediation techniques, effectively communicating results to the management team and providing practical recommendations
This is equivalent to three to four years of hands-on experience working in a security consultant or penetration tester job role. CompTIA PenTest+ is recommended to follow CompTIA Security+ on the CompTIA cybersecurity career pathway.
Here is a breakdown of the 5 Domains
1.0 Planning and Scoping
- Includes updated techniques emphasizing governance, risk, and compliance concepts, scoping and organizational/customer requirements, and demonstrating an ethical hacking mindset
- Pen testers can be held criminally liable when operating without ethics or proper approvals. Pen testing is required for compliance with regulations such as PCI-DSS and the NIST 800-53 RMF.
2.0 Information Gathering and Vulnerability Scanning
- Includes updated skills on performing vulnerability scanning and passive/active reconnaissance, vulnerability management as well as analyzing the results of the reconnaissance exercise
- Automation is required for modern vulnerability management to counteract automated attacks. Organizations must efficiently mitigate vulnerabilities, avoiding unnecessary dangers to operations.
3.0 Attacks and Exploits
- Includes updated approaches to expanded attack surfaces; researching social engineering techniques; performing network, wireless, cloud, and application-based attacks; and post-exploitation techniques
- Updated skills are needed to secure multiple attack surfaces; 87% of CompTIA-certified IT pros already work in expansive hybrid environments (both on-premises and in the cloud), and 93% work in multi-cloud environments.
4.0 Reporting and Communication
- Expanded to focus on the importance of reporting and communication in an increased regulatory environment during the pen testing process through analysis and appropriate remediation recommendations
- Communication is critical for the penetration testing lifecycle because collaboration is essential for identifying and managing vulnerabilities. Reporting is especially important for complying with regulations.
5.0 Tools and Code Analysis
- Includes updated concepts of identifying scripts in software deployments, analyzing a script or code sample and explaining use cases of pen test tools (Note: Scripting and coding is not required)
- Exposure to different scripts and code samples provides an expanded toolbox to help pen testers progress through their career. Pen testers work with scripting more as they advance in their careers.
Download the CompTIA PenTest+ Certification Exam Objectives
- Required exam: PT0-002
- Number of questions: Maximum of 85
- Types of questions: Multiple-choice and performance-based
- Length of test: 165 minutes
- Recommended experience: 3–4 years of hands-on experience performing penetration tests, vulnerability assessments, and code analysis
- Passing score: 750 (on a scale of 100-900)
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