Out with the old and in with new Cisco is updating its well-known certification CCNA Security. Candidates that are studying for the older exam (640-553) are suggested to take it on or before September 30th 2012. What has changed in the exam? For the most part Cisco SDM is no longer covered, as it has reached its “End of Life” and in fact Cisco Engineering stopped covering the product from developing and testing on February 26th 2012. You can still renew the product for support (Cisco SmartNet) until March 24th of 2013 and the last date the product will get support will be February 28th of 2014 after that it will become an old friend :). Let’s compare these two CCNA Security Exams and see what has changed, removed and added. (640-553 & 640-554)
I have compared these two exams side-by-side. If you take look at these two exams, the red on the older exam means it is no longer covered on the (640-554 exam) and the blue on the new exam is new material that is not covered on the (640-553 exam). For the most part Cisco SDM is no longer available instead it is the Cisco Configuration Professional along with that the new exam mentions the Cisco ASA system and walking you into the ASDM along with the different products and services the ASA system offers.
|CCNA Security Exam Topics – (640-553)
Describe the security threats facing modern network infrastructures
Secure Cisco routers
Implement AAA on Cisco routers using local router database and external ACS
Mitigate threats to Cisco routers and networks using ACLs
Implement secure network management and reporting
Mitigate common Layer 2 attacks
Implement the Cisco IOS firewall feature set using SDM
Implement the Cisco IOS IPS feature set using SDM
Implement site-to-site VPNs on Cisco Routers using SDM
|CCNA Security Exam Topics – (640-554)
Common Security Threats
Security and Cisco Routers
AAA on Cisco Devices
Secure Network Management and Reporting
Common Layer 2 Attacks
Cisco Firewall Technologies
For the most part if you have older books and products that cover the 640-553 exam continue studying as you can see when you compare these exams the fundamentals stay the same and if you think you can take it before September 30th go ahead and go for it! For me I want to take the new exam so I’ll take it after September 30th. I also have some good tutorials that cover SDM like (Configure Cisco SDM) back a year ago on this blog along with some security topics like AAA an Radius and TACACS+ go ahead search for them!
If you are like me and want to get your hands on some books that cover the new exam (640-554) you will have to wait until July 16th for the Official Certification Guide according to Amazon but you can go head and order the CCNA Security Portable Command Guide which released today. Like always I hope this information is helpful, if you have questions feel free to post them :).