Obtaining the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) certification is a significant achievement in the field of cybersecurity. It demonstrates your expertise in identifying vulnerabilities and securing computer systems. However, it’s important to remember that maintaining your CEH certificate requires periodic renewal. In this article, we will explore the importance of CEH renewal and provide you with valuable tips and strategies to ensure your CEH certification remains valid.
CEH – Certified Ethical Hacker
The first incidents of “hacking” were really just practical jokers, teenagers hired to run Bell switchboards in the 1880s. They would disconnect calls and misdirect them for fun.
In 1983, War Games with Matthew Broderick, was the first movie that focused on computer hacking. The movie brought together all of the fears of the time, nuclear war, the idea of technology taking over the world, and the idea that there were 16 year old kids that were able to manipulate that technology, even if it was without evil intention.
Twenty years after the debut of War Games, the International Council of Electronic Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) began providing CEH, Certified Ethical Hacker certification.
One of the most respectable and renowned IT security certifications, EC started the programs for “white hat hackers”. Also called Sneakers, “white hats” check, with consent, current programs for vulnerabilities. Their goal is to hack proof a system by hacking the system.
To keep their hats white, EC-Council requires renewal of CEH certification every three years.
ECE Requirements for CEH Renewal
All EC-Council certifications, including CEH, have the same renewal requirements:
- ECSH (Practical) & ECSA – EC-Council Certified Security Analyst
- LPT & LPT(Master) – Licensed Penetration Tester
- ENSA – EC-Council Network Security Advisor
- CND – Certified Network Defender
- CHFI – Computer Hacking Forensic Investigator
- ECVP – EC-Council Certified VoIP Professional
- ECSP – EC-Council Certified Secure Programmer
- EDRP – EC-Council Disaster Recovery Professional
- CCISO – Certified Chief Information Security Officer
- CEI – Certified EC-Council Instructor
- ECIH – EC-Council Certified Incident Handler
- ECDR-VT – EC-Council Certified Disaster Recovery and Virtualization Technology Professional
- CAST – Certified Advanced Network Defense
- ECES – EC-Council Certified Encryption Specialist
- CIMP – Cumulative Impact Monitoring Program, and
- CDM – Certified Digital Marketer.
Each certificate holder must:
Earn 120 ECE (EC-Council Continuing Education) CEH credits for the three years between renewals.
Submit 40 CEH credits to EC-Council per year. This ensures EC-Council that you are staying on top of the industry and not trying to cram all 120 hours into year three.
You must be a member in good standing of the EC-Council. EC requires certified professionals to be members in order to receive and maintain their certifications. It is the only way to submit your ECEs to them and at $80 per year, it’s worth the cost.
Why is CEH Renewal Important?
CEH renewal is crucial for several reasons:
1. Staying Updated:
The cybersecurity landscape is constantly evolving, with new threats and vulnerabilities emerging regularly. CEH renewal allows you to stay updated with the latest techniques, tools, and practices in ethical hacking. This ensures that your skills and knowledge remain relevant in an ever-changing industry.
2. Demonstrating Commitment:
Renewing your CEH certificate showcases your commitment to professional development and continuous learning. It highlights your dedication to maintaining high ethical standards in cybersecurity and validates your expertise to employers, clients, and colleagues.
3. Career Advancement:
CEH renewal opens doors to new opportunities and career advancement. Many organizations and employers require active and up-to-date certifications when hiring or promoting cybersecurity professionals. Renewing your CEH certificate enhances your professional credibility and increases your chances of landing desirable roles and projects.
Tips for CEH Renewal
To ensure a smooth CEH renewal process and maintain your certificate, consider the following tips:
1. Track your CEH Renewal Date:
Stay organized by keeping track of your CEH renewal date. Make a note of the expiration date and set reminders well in advance to avoid any last-minute rush.
2. Fulfill Continuing Education Requirements:
CEH renewal requires you to accumulate Continuing Education Units (CEUs) through various activities, such as attending conferences, completing training programs, or publishing research papers. Familiarize yourself with the CEU requirements and plan your activities accordingly.
3. Engage in Cybersecurity Community:
Stay active in the cybersecurity community to expand your knowledge and network with industry professionals. Participate in forums, webinars, and online discussions, and consider joining professional organizations related to ethical hacking and cybersecurity.
4. Pursue Advanced Certifications:
Consider pursuing advanced certifications and specializations to complement your CEH certification. This not only enhances your skill set but also provides additional credentials for career growth.
5. Stay Informed with Latest Trends:
Keep yourself updated with the latest trends, techniques, and best practices in the cybersecurity industry. Subscribe to relevant blogs, newsletters, and publications to stay informed about emerging threats and industry advancements.
Submitting ECE CEH Credits
Each year when you renew your annual membership with ECE you will have access to the Aspen Portal. You can also find a link through EC-council’s ECE Policy FAQs. At the portal you can submit your 40 credits per year to keep up with the 120 total minimum.
Remember, all certifications through EC-council require 120 ECEs every three years, however, each individual certification requires 120 total. If you have two separate certificates you will need to submit 80 total ECEs per annum.
Once these ECE credits are submitted, you must pay the $80 CEH annual fee to renew your certification.
Failure to submit ECE credits
If you have been unable to complete and submit your 120 ECE credits within the three year period your certificate will be suspended. If you are new to the process, remember to start filling up those hours as soon as you get your certificate. Some conferences you may want to attend only happen every two years, or there may be courses you want to take that aren’t offered when you are able to take them.
The 40 submitted credits per year isn’t just for EC-council. It’s for you. It helps you to keep track of what you’ve done, learned, gained, and what’s left to keep you certified.
If you’ve been unable to submit your credits and your certificate has been suspended, you will have one year to complete and submit all 120 hours of ECE credits. The limits are still in place; no more than 60 for coursework, no more than 5 for reading. You have to get them all.
If you don’t you will no longer be a white hat. You will need to be recertified, submitting all of the initial exam requirements and retaking the test.
Again, submitting those 40 hours per year saves you time and aggravation.
EC-Council ECE Submission Audits
Unfortunately, there are those, we can call them “gray hats” who don’t always comply with the policies EC-Council has set forth. So, they will sometimes randomly audit credit submissions to make sure you didn’t just sit at the blackjack table in Vegas, or that you actually read the article in Forbes.
They will check your submissions for compliance, the amount of hours you are claiming as well as asking you details about the credits you are claiming. By keeping notes as you read, attend, present, etc. you’re covered, with a white hat.
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Try the first two modules of Brain Sensei’s story-based PMP and CAPM Exam Prep courses and a mini practice exam and see how it all works
CEH renewal is an essential aspect of maintaining your CEH certificate and ensuring its continued value. By staying updated, demonstrating your commitment, and actively engaging in professional development, you can secure your career and stay at the forefront of the cybersecurity field. Invest in your CEH renewal, and reap the rewards of continuous learning and professional growth.
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