What happened to the CCSP (Cisco Certified Security Professional Qualification)?Posted by On

On October 14th 2011 Cisco retired the CCSP (Cisco Certified Security Professional Qualification and replaced it with CCNP-Security. The qualification is still valid for the standard 3 year period for individuals who gained the CCSP certification up to this date, however new candidates will now be studying and taking the exam to become a Cisco Certified Network Professional with specialism in Security.

A Qualification Evolution 

The new CCNP Security qualification represents a natural evolution of Cisco’s former professional certification structure, making it more streamlined and easy to understand, not just for candidates but also for hiring managers who need to understand what the qualifications mean.   The qualification is now much more focused on real life, on–the-job experience and is designed for the Cisco Network Security Engineer who is currently responsible for the security medium to complex networks. In depth knowledge of Cisco Security products is now backed up by this real-life experience makes the Certification even more valuable to employers than ever before.  What’s more The Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS) and The National Security Agency (NSA) now recognize that Cisco CCNP Security course material meets the CNSS 4013 training standard, adding further value to the new certification.

What Happens If I Have Already Completed Some of The Units for My CCSP?

Don’t worry if you are already partway through completing the retired CCSP Certification. Many of the legacy exams and units still qualify as credit towards the new CCNP- Security certification, so you won’t lose the hard work you have already put in. You will now just have to acquire the remaining credit through the new syllabus and you will get the new CCNP-Security certification instead of the old CCSP. Check the CISCO website to see which units are valid for credit in the new exams and find out more about the new syllabus and learning materials.

What Skills Are Validated in The CCSP and The New CCNP-Security?

The retired CCSP and the new CCNP-Security validate a range of skills essential for the Network Security Professional. These include choosing, deploying, supporting, and troubleshooting various solutions for networking environments. If a hiring manger sees that you have a CCNP-Security or a CCSP they know that you have expert level knowledge of network security and can competently manage and maintain their CISCO network, keeping it safe and secure.  Being Certified at Expert Level gives potential employers the peace of mind that you can do the job, especially with the new CCNP-Security, which is backed up with real life experience.

Learning Materials for The CCSP

Course providers should have been aware of the change over from CCSP to CCNP-Security and now should be providing the correct up-to-date courseware and learning materials. However before you buy (especially if buying online of through an online bookstore) check that you are getting the courseware for the CCNP-Security not the CCSP or you will end up with the wrong material. If you are already studying for the CCSP it is advisable to contact your course provider for further information and to ensure you have the correct syllabus.

Where Can I Find Out More about the CCSP?

For more information on the CCSP, why it was retired and the new CCNP-Security qualification, be sure to visit the official Cisco learning website. Alongside this there is a wealth of information on the Internet from course and learning material providers and from other professionals on forums, blogs and business networking sites for you to tap into at anytime.


Robert is writing for TestsExpert  well known for its preparation material for Cisco certifications such as CCNA, CCSP, CCIE and many more.


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