Provisionally Passed the CISSP 馃帀

Update 2024-04-11: I am officially a CISSP

I am thrilled to announce my provisional passage of the CISSP examination! This milestone is not solely my own but a testament to the incredible support I’ve received throughout my IT career. With the CISSP credential, I am now poised to engage with a broader audience, championing the criticality of Cybersecurity in our interconnected world.

I appreciate the curiosity many of you have expressed regarding the resources and strategies that facilitated my success, particularly as I navigated the journey of undertaking the examination for the second time鈥攅mbracing the ‘peace of mind’ option that allows for a retest, ensuring thorough preparedness and confidence.

Planning and Scheduling the Exam

Before I scheduled the exam, I thought to myself: What’s the most effective way to ensure (to some level of degree) I have a high chance of passing? I found out that we could get a voucher for a 2nd attempt at the test should I fail the first attempt.

With this opportunity, I created a 2 step study plan that is detailed in the following sections.

Phase 1: First Attempt

I used the following before attempting the first test:

  • 30 mins to 1 Hour most days, 1 year off/on study.
  • FRSecure
    • Mentors who helped guide me on important subjects.
  • ISC2 CISSP Official Study Guide
    • Read the first 2 domains, then used it as reference.
  • ISC2 CISSP Official iOS App
    • 10-25 questions a few times a week.
    • Full mock exam at the library during weekends to simulate test center.
    • Scored 60-70s on average
  • CISSP Exam Cram Full Course (Pete Zerger – YouTube)
    • Listened to it while on the road or walking my dog.
  • Work projects related to Software Engineering security.

In this attempt, I had to drive almost 4 hours to the test center and didn’t have a full night sleep, affecting my test results possibly. I stopped at 175 questions.

Phase 2: Second Attempt

For the 2nd attempt, I needed a new strategy. I tried several more things that were outside my comfort zone, such as giving public speeches about the importance of Cybersecurity, WannaPractice, and Thor’s videos.

On test day:

I did a lot more focus study in this phase and much more resources. Compared to the first attempt, I had the opportunity to have a great night sleep.

I stopped at 160ish questions.

Additional Resources Used

The following helped me manage my time and processes for the study:

  • Pomodoro Technique
  • Bullet Journal

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