Ethical hacking is the process of identifying vulnerabilities in computer systems and networks and then trying to exploit them for the purpose of improving the security of a system or network. Ethical hackers, also known as white hat hackers, use the same techniques as malicious hackers but without the intention of causing damage.
Ethical hacking professionals are in high demand as organizations realize the importance of having someone on their side who can think like a hacker and help them fortify their defenses. At the moment of writing this article, there are over 30,000 online job openings in the United States for penetration testing and vulnerability testing, two positions that represent a subset of ethical hacking.
One of the best ways of getting your foot in the door of the ethical hacking field is by getting certified. And among all available offensive security certifications, the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH credential) is perhaps the most well-known and sought-after.
The CEH ethical hacking certification was developed by the International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council). It is designed to provide individuals with the skills and knowledge they need to understand and identify potential security risks in an organization’s network and systems and then take the appropriate measures to mitigate those risks.
In order to become CEH certified, candidates must successfully pass a proctored exam.
In this article, we’ll take a close look at CEH training for the certification exam: what it entails, how much it costs, how long it takes, and where you can get it.
What does CEH training cover?
An understandable question to ask yourself is What will I learn in Certified Ethical Hacker training?
Of course, the primary goal of CEH training is to prepare you for the certification exam. But in order to do that, CEH courses must cover a wide range of topics related to hacking and security. There are a total of 20 modules in the current version of the CEH exam (CEH v11), which we will explore in a bit more detail.
Module 1: Introduction to ethical hacking
This module provides a basic introduction to ethical hacking, its objectives, and the different types of attacks that ethical hackers may carry out. It also covers the legal issues related to hacking and the importance of having permission from the target organization before carrying out any tests.
Module 2: Footprinting and reconnaissance
In this module, you will learn about footprinting, which is the process of gathering information about a target system or network. You will also learn about different types of reconnaissance techniques that can be used to collect this information.
Module 3: Scanning networks
Scanning networks is an important part of ethical hacking, as it allows ethical hackers to identify live systems and open ports on a network. This module will teach you all about scanning processes, as well as how to use a port scanner to find open ports on a system.
Module 4: Enumeration
In this module, you will learn how to use enumeration to gather information about a target system. Enumeration is the process of identifying users, servers, and resources on a network.
Module 5: Vulnerability analysis
Knowing your way around all the different types of vulnerabilities is critical for any ethical hacker. This module will teach you how to carry out a thorough vulnerability assessment.
Module 6: System hacking
System hacking is the process of gaining unauthorized access to a system. In this module, you will learn about different system hacking concepts and how to use a hacker’s toolkit to carry out these attacks.
Module 7: Malware threats
This module will teach you about different types of malware, as well as how to identify and remove them from a system. You will also learn about malware analysis.
Module 8: Sniffing
In this module, you will learn about different types of sniffing attacks or the process of intercepting and logging network traffic.
Module 9: Social engineering
Social engineering consists of tricking people into revealing confidential information, and this module will teach you all the common techniques for pulling that off.
Module 10: Denial-of-service
A denial-of-service attack (or DoS attack) is an attempt to make a system or network unavailable to its users. In this module, you will learn how to carry out and defend against these types of attacks.
Module 11: Session hijacking
Module 11 teaches you about session hijacking, which consists of taking over an active user session to gain unauthorized access to a system.
Module 12: Evading IDS, firewalls, and honeypots
Evading honeypots and getting through intrusion detection systems (IDS) and firewalls are essential skills for any ethical hacker. This module will teach you all about that.
Module 13: Hacking web servers
In this module, you will learn about different methods of attacking a web server. This includes topics such as cracking remote passwords and detecting unpatched security flaws.
Module 14: Hacking web applications
This module builds on the previous one by teaching you how to attack any web application. It covers topics such as webhooks and web shell concepts, web API hacking and security, and more.
Module 15: SQL injection
SQL injection is a type of attack that allows attackers to execute malicious SQL queries. In this module, you will learn how to carry out and defend against these types of attacks.
Module 16: Hacking wireless networks
This module covers everything you need to know about hacking wireless networks. This includes topics such as Wi-Fi security tools, network security, wireless encryption, and more.
Module 17: Hacking mobile platforms
Mobile security is a rapidly growing field, and this module will teach you about different methods of gaining access to mobile devices. This includes topics such as Android security tools, mobile platform attack vectors, and more.
Module 18: IoT hacking
The Internet of Things (IoT) includes all devices that are connected to the internet. In this module, you will learn about different methods of attacking IoT devices. This includes topics such as IoT security tools, common IoT attacks, OT hacking techniques, and more.
Module 19: Cloud computing
Since most businesses are moving to the cloud, it’s important for ethical hackers to know about cloud security. In this module, you will learn about serverless computing, container technologies, and more.
Module 20: Cryptography
Cryptography is the practice of secure communication in the presence of third parties. This module will teach you about cryptographic algorithms, digital signatures, and similar.
Is CEH training suitable for beginners?
It is understandable if you’re feeling overwhelmed with all the information presented in the modules. After all, ethical hacking is a complex topic. However, you don’t need to be an expert to benefit from CEH training. The course is designed so that even beginners in ethical hacking can understand and apply the concepts.
It is important to distinguish between beginners in ethical hacking and IT beginners overall. While CEH training is suitable for beginners in ethical hacking, it is not recommended for IT beginners who have no prior experience in the field.
You still need at least two years of experience working in an IT environment – specifically, the information security sector – before enrolling in the course. This is because the CEH course covers topics that require a certain level of understanding and experience to truly appreciate.
How much does CEH training cost?
The cost of CEH training can vary depending on the provider you choose and the type of training you want. Here are some rough estimates for different forms of CEH ethical hacking training:
- Self-paced training: $500 – $5,000
- Instructor-led training: $1,500 – $3,500
- Bootcamp training: $2,500 – $4,000
As you can see, the cost of a CEH certification training course can range from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars. Of course, in-person classes will be more expensive than online training because of the added costs of the instructor’s time, the venue, and other resources.
While price does matter, especially if you’re on a tight budget, you should know that it may not be the best option to choose the cheapest CEH training you can find. This is because the quality of the training can vary greatly, and you may not get what you expect for such a low price.
It’s better to spend a bit more and get CEH training from a reputable provider that has a good reputation and offers high-quality courses. More on reputable providers in a bit.
How long does CEH training take?
To answer in a similar way to the above question – it depends. A variety of factors can affect the duration of your CEH training, including:
- The type of training you choose
- How much experience you have in ethical hacking
- How quickly you learn and retain information, and more
Generally speaking, most people can complete CEH training within four to six weeks. Of course, this timeline may be different for you, depending on the factors mentioned above.
It’s also worth noting that the time commitment required for CEH training can vary depending on the type of training you choose. For example, if you opt for a self-paced online course, you can probably complete the training at your own pace and finish it sooner than if you had chosen an instructor-led training course.
On the other hand, boot camp courses are generally shorter in duration. Still, they require a greater time commitment as they are usually conducted for one to two weeks, with classes lasting for eight hours each day.
Top CEH training providers
Now that you know more about CEH training, including what it covers, how much it costs, and how long it takes, you may be wondering – where can I get CEH training?
We’ve already mentioned the importance of choosing a reputable provider. This means that they have a good reputation in the industry, offer high-quality courses, and – above all – have been accredited by the EC-Council.
Here are some of the top providers of CEH training to consider:
1. The i4 Group
Our company, The i4 Group, is a leading provider of CEH training. We offer both instructor-led and self-paced courses, so you can choose the best option that suits your needs and schedule.
Our courses are accredited by the EC-Council and are of the highest quality. For a significantly lower price than other providers, you get access both to CEH training and CEH practical training, which is essential to hone your skills and become a CEH Master.
EC-Council is the organization behind the CEH certification, so it only makes sense that they offer accredited CEH training. They offer both self-study and instructor-led courses, giving you the flexibility to choose the option that works best for you.
An upside to the official EC-Council training is that, once you complete it, you are automatically eligible to take the CEH exam (no need to submit an eligibility form for approval). However, this comes at a price – their courses are some of the most expensive on the market.
3. InfoSec Institute
InfoSec Institute is another reputable provider of CEH training. They offer only self-paced courses, which may not be ideal if you prefer instructor-led training or if you learn better in a classroom setting.
However, it could be a good option if you’re looking for a different pricing method. Namely, InfoSec doesn’t charge a one-time fee for its CEH ethical hacking course. Instead, you pay a monthly subscription fee, which gives you access to all of their courses (not just CEH training).
4. Global Knowledge
Global Knowledge is an IT training company that offers only instructor-led courses. If you’re looking for a self-paced course, you’ll need to look elsewhere.
However, they offer plenty of study materials, such as practice exams, a course manual, and even a voucher for the CEH exam, which is included in the price of the course.
5. Simpli Learn
Finally, Simpli Learn represents the boot camp style of CEH training that we mentioned earlier. These courses are shorter in duration but more intense, as they are usually conducted over one to two weeks, with classes lasting eight hours each day.
This option could be ideal if you want to get CEH certified quickly and don’t mind the intensive schedule. However, it’s worth noting that the price tag is also quite high.
And you may also require additional study time outside the classroom hours to adequately prepare for the CEH exam.
Choosing the right training provider for you
As you can see, there are many factors to consider when choosing a CEH training course provider, such as cost, course format, schedule, and accreditation.
The best way to choose the right provider is to research each option and compare them side-by-side carefully.
Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, we recommend reading reviews from past students to get a better idea of what their experience was like.
This will give you a good sense of what to expect from the provider and whether or not they are reputable and worth your time (and money).
Benefits of CEH training
After such a comprehensive read, you might be wondering, what’s the benefit of CEH training?
First and foremost, it will give you the skills and knowledge necessary to become a certified ethical hacker.
But beyond that, CEH training can also help improve your career prospects.
Ethical hacking is an in-demand skill set, so becoming CEH certified will make you more marketable to employers.
And as we mentioned earlier, CEH certification is also a prerequisite for many security jobs, so if you’re looking to become a well-rounded cyber security professional, CEH training is necessary.
CEH training can also help improve your problem-solving skills.
As an ethical hacker, you’ll need to think like a malicious hacker to find and exploit weaknesses in systems.
This type of thinking can benefit other aspects of your life, such as your finances or fitness goals.
So, if you’re looking for a way to improve your career prospects, enhance your problem-solving skills, and make yourself more marketable to employers, CEH training is a great option.
Is it worth going through CEH training? Do the benefits outweigh the costs?
We believe that, for most people, the answer is yes.
CEH training is an investment in your future, and if you’re looking to enter the field of information security or enhance your career prospects, it’s a necessary step.
It’s also important to remember that CEH training is just the first step.
After completing your CEH course, you’ll still need to pass the CEH exam to earn your Certified Ethical Hacker certification.
But, once you’ve done that, you’ll be on your way to a successful career in ethical hacking.
For more information on how to start this journey, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at The i4 Group. We offer a variety of CEH training courses, both self-paced and instructor-led, to help you prepare for the CEH certification exam.
We also offer a variety of other information security and cybersecurity courses, so if you’re looking to build up your skill set, we can help.
Contact us today to learn more about our services or to enroll in a course. We’re here to help you achieve your goals.