Practical Technology

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Security Certification for Linux job-hunters

Need another arrow in your Linux job-hunting quiver? Then you might want to check out the LPI (Linux Professional Institute), the Linux certification organization has launched its new “Security” exam elective for its top-level LPIC-3 certification program.

The LPI has been working on this security certification option since March 2008. To obtain this certification, roughly equivalent to the RHCE (Red Hat Certified Engineer) or the NCLE (Novell Certified Linux Engineer), a Linux administrator must have already obtained the LPIC-1 and LPIC-2 certifications. In addition, he or she must pass the enterprise-level core certification exam (LPI-301) and a ‘Mixed Environment’ elective (LPI-302). The ‘Security’ elective (LPI-303) is another, potentially valuable mixed Linux and security certification option.

“Security certifications are valuable commodities for employers, who are demanding qualified information security staff, particularly those with a strong background at the enterprise-level of Linux deployment,” said Jim Lacey, President and CEO of LPI in a statement. According to Lacey, industry representatives and IT professionals have frequently indicated the need for an enterprise-level ‘Security’ elective within the LPIC-3 program.

The LPIC-3 certification program consists of a single ‘core’ exam which focuses on skills in authentication, troubleshooting, network integration and capacity planning. The LPI also plans to offer additional specialty electives in ‘High Availability and Virtualization,’ ‘Web and Intranet,’ and ‘Mail and Messaging.’

From my knowledge of how and where Linux is used in business, I think this new ‘Security’ elective will be the most valuable of all these options. As Linux shows up more and more often both on edge and core servers, being able to manage their security properly will only become a more and more valuable job skill.