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How Anamika Cracked Her CISSP Exam!

I provisionally passed the CISSP on my first attempt!!!

Prepared for 2.5 months with 6 years of experience in Information Security and Audits. Hence, it’s time for me to give back to the community. Started end of April 2019 - Registered for the exam because I needed to have the motivation to study. Book your exam and then start working towards it.

Forums used:

Reddit cissp community - very motivating

Facebook cissp group - motivating and useful discussions on questions

Luke’s Study & Notes Theory website and telegram group - great explanations and videos. The group is active 24x7. I took a 3 months membership

ISC2 forum rsblade’s questions and the breakdown was much needed

Resources used:

Sybex 8th edition study guide - 10/10 Eat this book! It’s super dry so I used to plugin instrumental music to keep myself awake and make notes. Read the book twice, took notes the second time. Everything that came on the test was from this book

11th hour book - 10/10 Best for last minute revision. I’d suggest to read this book in advance to Very useful to study the ISC2 CISSP Four Canons!

YouTube CISSP IT Dojo videos - 10/10 Colin knows his stuff. His breakdown will help you understand how/why to eliminate

Kelly Handerhan Cybrary free videos - 11/10 Loved her teaching style. Everything she speaks is Gold for the exam. Takes notes whenever she says *this is testable*

Larry Greenblatt course - $99 bucks was absolutely worth it. It’s a 5 day video course. Again, make notes whenever he says *very testable*

Boson Exams - 8/10 The practice questions are amazing but it is way too technical for the test. The wording is very close to the real exam - First, Most, Best, Least. Use these to learn the art of elimination.

Thor’s practice questions - 10/10

Apps used:

Quizlet - Has the same questions as the Sybex practice questions book but super handy and useful during commute to work

CISM app by Unity - Super helpful for putting your managerial hat while answering questions

Reddit app - Keep this on your phone and bookmark the cissp community. Everytime someone posts a pass story, they write what they used.

Pocketprep app - Useful for quick revisions on the concepts when you’re bored at work or are taking a break.

Videos/Tips for Winning

Larry’s why you will pass -

Kelly’s why you will pass -

Art of elimination -

Do not spend too much time memorizing port numbers, protocols or going too deep into technical concepts. It's a managerial exam. Learn the OSI model and process steps very well. Use mnemonics to remember. Whatever works for you!

Took me 2.5 months to study. Balancing a busy work schedule and keeping up with studies was challenging. Be consistent. Even a day’s break can cause a disconnect. The sacrifice of your personal and social life is tough but use the groups to stay motivated. You’re not alone!

Day of the exam (Aug 16/2019) - I went all the way to 150 questions with 40 minutes left. So if you see yourself crossing 100, do not PANIC!

Do some deep breathing when you feel your brain is unable to process the question. And lastly, keep telling yourself that you got this after your mark each question. Positive mindset is key.

Thank you all! Couldn't do it without this group :) Feel free to reach out for any help.


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