Overview Of The CompTIA CySA+ Exam
The CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+)is a globally recognized, vendor agnostic certification that demonstrates knowledge in the realm of behavioral and network analytics to prevent and detect security threats through monitoring. The certification comes from the same group that brings you the A+, Security+, and Network+ certs. If you’re studying for these as well, checkout our handy A+ Study Guide, Security+ Study Guide, and Network+ Study Guide reviews. The CySA+ certification tells prospective and current employers that you’ve got the right stuff to help them achieve a safe and secure security posture.
We’ll cover the CySA+ exam (CS0-002) in detail, and give you our picks for the best CompTIA CySA+ study guides, review guides, and practice tests to ensure your test prep success! The details are below, but if you just can’t wait, here’s the short list:
CySA+ Exam Details
The ComptTIA CySA+ Exam (CS0-002) signifies the ability to proactively defend and continuously improve the security of an organization.
The exam is currently priced at $359, and is recommended for people with 4+ years of information security experience.
The CompTIA CySA+ covers intelligence and threat detection techniques, analysis and interpretation of data, identification and addressing vulnerabilities, suggesting preventative measures, and effectively responding to and recovering from incidents.
The exam is 165 minutes in length, and includes up to 85 multiple choice (single and multiple response), and performance-based questions.
The CompTIA is administered by Pearson VUE, and your results will be calculated on completion of each exam automatically. It’s scored on a scale of 100-900, and a passing score is 750.
Best CompTIA CySA+ Study Guides
The Official CompTIA CySA+ Study Guide
Pros: Official CompTIA publication, with complete and comprehensive review of all exam topics.
Cons: No major flaws
Our Rating: 5.0 / 5
The Official CompTIA CySA+ Certification Study Guide is our overall top pick for people studying for the CySA+ Exam. As the name suggests, this is the official guide from the certification org, which means the material is the most reflective of what they expect you to know in order to pass the exams. All topics, including Threat management, Vulnerability management, Cyber incident response and more!
The full list of features include:
- 2 custom practice exams.
- 100 electronic flashcards.
- Searchable key term glossary.
With incredibly strong content, this book is an easy recommendation for CySA+ test prep. We’d also recommend pairing this book with the full length practice test supplement book at the end of this list to help you get the most bang for your buck. If this is your first time taking the exam (as opposed to a recertification), we strongly advise picking up this book. It’s great as a stand-alone resource, or to compliment other materials. Either way, we’re sure you’ll love the results.
CompTIA CySA+ All-in-One Exam Guide
Pros: Comprehensive topic coverage.
Cons: Content layout doesn't match the topic list from CompTIA
Our Rating: 4.5 / 5
CompTIA CySA+ All-in-One Exam Guide is our second place pick, and it’s a completely viable alternative (or compliment to) the official guide. The book itself is a comprehensive overview of critical test topics, and boasts excellent practice questions to help you prepare.
The full list of features include:
- Learning objectives at the beginning of each chapter, exam tips, in-depth explanations, and practice exam questions.
- All questions closely mirror those on the live test in content, format, and tone. Designed to help you pass with ease.
- Definitive guide also serves as an essential on-the-job reference.
While it didn’t take the top spot, you’d still do well to consider this guide. It’s a bit more abbreviated than the one above, but this can make for excellent study material in the days leading up to the test or as a desk reference in the future. Overall, if you only plan to use one book, go with the official guide. If you want to add more content to your study then this is well worth a look.
Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+) Cert Guide
Pros: Good online content to supplement the printed guide book.
Cons: Not as comprehensive as the other options above.
Our Rating: 4.5 / 5
The Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+) Cert Guide rounds out our list. The book presents you with an organized test-preparation routine through the use of proven series elements and techniques. The companion website contains the powerful Pearson Test Prep practice test software, complete with hundreds of exam-realistic questions.
- Online access to Pearson Test Prep practice test software
- Assessment engine offers you a wealth of customization options and reporting features, laying out a complete assessment of your knowledge to help you focus your study where it is needed most.
- Identify areas of weakness and improve both your conceptual knowledge and hands-on skills
Well regarded for its level of detail, assessment features, and challenging review questions and exercises, this CompTIA approved study guide helps you master the concepts and techniques that will enable you to succeed on the exam the first time.
CompTIA CySA+ Practice Tests
Pros: A great condensed overview that's great for last minute prep.
Cons: Book organization isn't as great as it could be.
Our Rating: 4.5 / 5
This book is designed to supplement the official study guide at the top of this list, with over 1000 additional practice questions. It’s an extremely valuable resource for either the early stages to help you assess and plan your study time, or the late stages to help you finalize and drill on what you’ve learned.
- 1,000 questions covering 100% of the exam objectives.
- Assess your level of knowledge before planning your study time.
- Learn what to expect on exam day.
While it’s not enough for most people on its own, this is a perfect addition to any of the other full length guides on this list. You can never have too many practice questions, and these ones from the official test guide publisher are really top-notch!
If you’re a current security industry professional with an interest in Analysis techniques, or an established security analyst one who’s just looking to spruce up the resume for prospective employers, the CySA+ is a tremendous asset. It signals to employers around the world that you’ve mastered the techniques they’re looking for.
Study manuals, flashcards, and practice tests are a huge help to many people, and if you’ve read this far you’re probably one of them.
We’ve rounded up the top CySA+ study guides and presented them above.
Our top pick for most people is the The Official CompTIA CySA+ Certification Study Guide. It’s the most comprehensive and accurate guide on our list, produced by CompTIA, and is the single best resource available.
To compliment this, or any other guide on our list, we recommend the official CompTIA CySA+ Practice Tests from the same publisher. Having additional practice questions to work with is always a great idea, and these are realistic to what you’ll find on the real test.
Whatever your circumstance, supplemental study and review materials are a key part of ensuring success. We’ve listed some of the best books available. Good luck, and study hard!