Step Back I’m Certified – GCIA

Today I passed the GIAC Certified Intrusion Analyst (GCIA).  The blog title refers to a Dilbert strip that I keep on the wall with my certifications.   As I recall Certification Man says to Dilbert “Step back from that server, I’m certified!”  In the next panel he says, “funny, that’s all I recall from the certification classes”.  

The GCIA is the certification associated with the SANS Security 503 course “Intrusion Detection in Depth” that I took in April.   

I think getting the certification is something tangible for management to  show the training is worthwhile.  Other than that, it doesn’t mean much unless you’re looking for another job.  

I’ve worked with ISS RealSecure and some Cisco IDSM-2 modules.   I was interested in learning a bit about Snort.   Also the GCIA is a prerequesite for the GSE.


    • I’ve been very impressed with the quality of every SANS instructor that I’ve had.

      The classmates are usually a mix from good people I could learn something form to people who should have checked the prereqs with the majority somewhere in the middle.
      Each course has a certain amount of death by powerpoint. Sometimes the exercises can be a bit too much ‘and now you type this’. But they generally build toward something that requires more thinking and usually working in a group.

      Cost is something you’d have to determine. At work I have budgeted for one class or conference each year, however the travel budget has dried up. SANS has many conferences here in the DC area, so its an easy thing to do. I’d ask what are the other options? I have Blackhat DC as an options. I’ve taken a course taught by SensePost via blackhat. Very good course. Global Knowledge is an option. I found their course taught old Cisco wireless gear and was a little disappointing. I later took SANS’ wireless course. I learned from both, but SANS’ is what was more useful.

      enough of me rambling. Hope some of that was helpful.

      Worth it, also has a bit to do with your level of experience and also the amount of time you could put into learning it on your own.

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