Government-backed certification body CREST Australia will hold its first penetration testing exams at the end of this month.
The closed-book exams are designed as a pressure test for penetration testers in the fields of application and infrastructure security.
Tracks contain essential written components including 90 multiple choice questions that must be answered offline, and three long form questions conducted open book and online.
Written and practical components of the examinations are sat consecutively, lasting a day.
Examinations are divided into two tracks, with the Infrastructure Certification Examination assessing “capabilities in the field of general infrastructure and operating system security assessments” and the Web Application Certification Examination assessing testers’ ability to find vulnerabilities in bespoke web applications.
The initial tests will train the first set of assessors who can then go out in the field and issue CREST certifications to organisations.
Both the pen tester and their organisation must be certified in order to do work as a CREST-endorsed organisation.
CREST Australia formed in March and was modelled on the British Council of Registered Security Testers certification.
CREST Australia chief executive officer Alastair MacGibbon said the upcoming exams would be a “soft launch” designed to allow any problems to be identified and ironed out.
“We want to make sure the kit works, that the process is smooth,” MacGibbon said.
“We will start by training the first set of assessors, and go broader as time goes on.”
The exams are different from real world tests principally because pen testers are rarely pressured for time.
Professional work is thorough and considered, with testers able to download tools and access information online.
The exams will be held at the University of Canberra on 30 September, and 1 and 2 October.
MacGibbon welcomed those interested in taking the exams to contact CREST via email admin[AT]crestaustralia[DOT]org[DOT]au.