Review of eLearnSecurity Penetration Testing Student

Working as a network engineer has provided me with a solid understanding of networking at the fundamental level. My role in security has added to that knowledge by exposing me to real world usage of NAT policies, access rules, IPS, and content filtering. I have learned how to mitigate some of the common attacks that company may face using the firewall, but was left clueless as to how the attacks actually worked or how they were performed.

I frequent the TechExam forums (www.techexams.net) and noticed that the eLearnSecurity eJPT exam was gaining popularity. After looking into their Penetration Testing Student course (https://www.elearnsecurity.com/course/penetration_testing_student) I decided that I would give it a shot. At the time they were offering a steep discount to celebrate their anniversary as a training company. After some debate with myself, I ended up going with the Elite version over the Full to get the extra lab time and exam attempts.

I was pleasantly surprised with the content. The course is well done and the labs provide hands on experience with the information providing in the training modules. While you definitely will not be a world class hacker after the course – you will have a foundation that will help build a more advanced skillset. The course will introduce you to tools such as nmap, Nessus, Burp Suite, and John The Ripper. You will also learn the methodology behind the tools and the pentesting process. They focus on the concept that a penetration test is a cycle with emphasis on information gathering and enumeration. You will be introduced to basic web application testing with XSS and SQL Injection.

The final exam does a good job of testing the majority of the techniques you learn in the course. It took me roughly five hours to complete the exam, but your mileage may vary. They provide ample time to complete the test and there are retake options. I ended up with a lot of lab time left over (50 hours) after the course and did not end up using any extra exam attempts. With that being said, I am glad I had the buffer – just in case.

I have moved on to the Penetration Testing Professional course – though for anyone currently looking into I would advise holding off as they are releasing an updated version on 6/21/2016. My goal is to complete the PTP course then move onto Offensive Securitys OSCP.

For anyone who is looking to build a base skillset – I highly recommend the PTS course. If you already have some of the knowledge, then I would suggest skipping the PTS and going straight to the PTP. The PTS was well worth it for me, as I had no previous exposure to any of the tools.

Good luck in your studies!

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