Is CompTIA Security+ Worth It?

As cyber threats become more complex and frequent, cybersecurity has become an increasingly important field.

In response to this demand certifications like the CompTIA Security+ have emerged as a way for professionals to demonstrate their expertise and validate their skills. 

However, the question remains: is obtaining a CompTIA Security+ certification worth it? 

In this article, we'll explore the benefits of obtaining this certification, and its potential drawbacks, and provide some guidance to help you make an informed decision about whether it's right for you.

Overview of CompTIA Security+ Certification

CompTIA Security+ is a widely recognized cybersecurity certification that validates an individual's understanding of security concepts, tools, and procedures. 

It is an entry-level certification designed for individuals who want to start a career in cybersecurity or for IT professionals who want to add cybersecurity skills to their portfolio.

Requirements for obtaining the certification

To obtain the CompTIA Security+ certification, candidates must pass the SY0-601 exam which covers a wide range of topics related to cybersecurity, such as threat management, vulnerability assessment, intrusion detection and response, identity management, cryptography, and network security. 

The exam consists of 90 multiple-choice and performance-based questions and has a time limit of 90 minutes.

Is CompTIA Security+ Certification Worth It?

  • Job opportunities and career advancement

    It can increase job opportunities and help professionals advance in their careers.

  • Salary potential

    It may lead to higher salaries as it demonstrates knowledge and expertise in the field of cybersecurity.

  • Industry recognition and credibility

    It is widely recognized in the industry and can add credibility to a professional's skill set.

  • Industry-relevant skills

    The certification covers a wide range of cybersecurity topics and provides individuals with the skills and knowledge needed to protect organizations from cyber threats. 

  • Networking opportunities

    Obtaining a CompTIA Security+ certification can provide individuals with opportunities to network with other professionals in the field of cybersecurity. 

Criticisms of CompTIA Security+ Certification

  • Critiques of the exam and its structure

    Some critics argue that the exam is very much focused on memorization and multiple-choice questions, rather than real-world scenarios and problem-solving skills. 

  • Arguments against the necessity of the certification

    Some argue that this certification may not be necessary for some cybersecurity jobs. They believe that experience and on-the-job training may be more valuable than holding a certification.

  • Limitations of the certification

    Some individuals might argue that the CompTIA Security+ certification is an entry-level certification and may not be sufficient for more advanced cybersecurity roles. 

CompTIA Security+ Certification Exam Details

Here are some details on the CompTIA Security+ certification exam:

a. Exam format and structure

The CompTIA Security+ certification exam is a computer-based exam consisting of a maximum of 90 questions. The exam includes both multiple-choice and performance-based questions which test the candidate's ability to apply their knowledge to real world scenarios.

b. Scoring and passing requirements

The CompTIA Security+ certification exam is scored on a scale of 100-900, with a passing score of 750 and higher. Candidates are given a pass or fail result immediately after completing the exam. 

c. Exam duration and costs

The exam duration is 90 minutes and the cost of the exam can vary depending on the country and location where the exam is taken. The cost of the exam is typically around $370 USD but this can vary depending on the country and currency.

Preparation for CompTIA Security+ Certification

1. Study materials and resources

CompTIA Security+ SY0-601 Certification Study Guide

This study guide covers the essential topics and concepts related to information security, providing a solid foundation for individuals aspiring to enter or advance in the cybersecurity field.

2. Great online courses

Udemy | CompTIA Security+ (SY0-601) Complete Course & Exam

Enrolling in this course will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of computer security, including its functions and components.

By mastering basic security configurations, you will become a proficient security technician capable of effectively operating in a business environment. 

3. Useful practice exams

Whizlabs | CompTIA Security+ Certification Exam [SY0-601]

In this course, you will have access to a comprehensive set of over 80 practice questions. These questions are designed to prepare you thoroughly for the CompTIA Security+ exam. 

Moreover, detailed answers are provided for each question, enabling you to gain a deep understanding of the exam topics. 

Alternatives to CompTIA Security+ Certification

Here are some alternative cybersecurity certifications and their differences:



Ideal for


Entry-level cybersecurity knowledge

Cybersecurity generalists


Advanced cybersecurity knowledge

Security managers, executives


Technical cybersecurity knowledge

Technical cybersecurity roles


Information security management

Management-level cybersecurity roles


IT auditing and governance

IT auditing and governance roles

Which certification is best for different career paths?

Depending on a person's experience level and career ambitions, the appropriate certification for various career routes may change.

A more seasoned expert would benefit from seeking a certification like CISSP or CEH, but a newcomer in the cybersecurity area might benefit from starting with the CompTIA Security+ certification. 

In order to choose the certification that is appropriate for one's job path, it is advised to examine various certifications and their prerequisites.

Real-Life Experiences of CompTIA Security+ Certification Holders

Here are some real-life experiences of CompTIA Security+ certification holders:

Success Stories and Career Paths

  • After obtaining the CompTIA Security+ certification, many individuals have been able to advance their careers in the field of information security. 

  • A common success story among certification holders is that they have been able to secure higher-paying jobs and more job opportunities.

Personal Anecdotes

  • Some have found the exam to be challenging while others have found it to be manageable with the proper preparation and study.

  • Some have shared that the certification process has helped them to gain a deeper understanding of cybersecurity principles and has given them the confidence to take on more challenging roles in their careers.

Helpful Advice

  • Some common advice includes setting aside enough time to study and prepare for the exam, taking practice exams, and seeking out additional resources such as study guides and online courses.

  • Additionally, many certification holders emphasize the importance of staying up-to-date on the latest developments and trends in the field of cybersecurity, as the industry is constantly evolving and changing.

Industry Demand for CompTIA Security+ Certification

a. Current and future job market trends

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of information security analysts is projected to grow 33% from 2020 to 2030 much faster than the average for all occupations. 

This means that there will be a high demand for cybersecurity professionals who hold certifications such as CompTIA Security+.

b. Job roles that require or prefer the certification

The CompTIA Security+ certification is often required or preferred for job roles such as cybersecurity analyst, network security engineer, information security specialist, and security consultant. 

c. Industry sectors where the certification is most valuable

The CompTIA Security+ certification is valuable across a wide range of industry sectors, including finance, healthcare, government, and technology. 


In conclusion, if you are interested in pursuing a career in cybersecurity, obtaining the CompTIA Security+ certification can be a valuable asset that can help you stand out in a competitive job market. 

However, it is important to note that the certification is not a guarantee of employment or career success. Other factors such as experience, education, and development are also crucial for career advancement in cybersecurity.


Is CompTIA Security+ difficult?

The difficulty of the CompTIA Security+ exam can vary, but it can be manageable with adequate preparation and study.

Should I get CCNA or security+ first?

Whether to obtain the CCNA or Security+ certification first depends on an individual's career goals and aspirations.

Is Security+ harder than CCNA?

The difficulty of Security+ versus CCNA can vary depending on an individual's knowledge and experience.

Is CCNA enough for cybersecurity?

While CCNA is a valuable certification for networking professionals, having only one certification may not be enough for a comprehensive cybersecurity career.

Can I take CompTIA Security+ with no experience?

Yes, you can take the CompTIA Security+ exam with no experience, but it is recommended to have some knowledge of cybersecurity concepts before taking the exam.

Is 3 months enough to learn CompTIA Security+?

Three months may be enough time to prepare for the CompTIA Security+ exam, but it depends on an individual's existing knowledge and the amount of time they dedicate to studying and preparing.

About the author


Youssef is a Senior Cloud Consultant & Founder of

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