Apply for your Certified Officer certification titleYour learning path to becoming a Certified Information Security Officer (CISO)
At SECO we recognise the value of practical experience. That is why we have positioned our SECO Certified Officer title as the most senior of our titles. Those who are awarded this title have a proven track record in their field of expertise. SECO Certified Officers are the professionals that have shown that they are able to gain results in a practical setting.
We would be glad to welcome you in our SECO community as one of our Certified Officers. However, before you can become a much esteemed member of our community, we need to verify you actually meet the requirements for this title.
Requirements to become a SECO Certified Officer
Being a SECO Certified Officer means you have gained extensive working experience on a senior level. Organisations and others value SECO Certified Officers, because they know these are the professionals that can produce actual results.
We assess the working experience of applicants using the following criteria:
- [Relevance] Do you have working experience in the field of expertise associated with the title that you are applying for?
- [Term] Does that working experience amount to at least 7 years, with the last 5 years in a Leadership role?
- [Level] During that time, did you bear responsibility for (part of) the governance and decision-making process in your organisation(s) when it comes to the field of expertise associated with the title that you are applying for? Or, in the case of external staff (e.g. consultants), were you an advisor with more than non-committal influence on the governance and decision-making process?
- [Accomplishment] What did you personally bring to the governance and decision-making process that improved the ability to perform of the organisation(s) you worked for?
It never hurts to list your certifications and the projects you have been a part of in a résumé (or curriculum vitae, CV). But please, be aware that most standard résumés will not provide us with the information we need to ascertain the answers to the questions above. In particular the last two questions. What we need is a way to verify you were one of the persons making decisions and governing the activities of your organisation on a strategic level. Or, if you were external to the organisation, that you had a more than non-committal influence on that governance and those decisions. In addition to that, mentioning a process or project and your role in general in a résumé does not give us enough information to figure out what you contributed to that process or project. Make sure we are made aware of your personal achievements that are relevant to someone operating on the level expected of a SECO Certified Officer.
To include some objectivity into the assessment process, which allows us to justify the titles we award, we also ask you to refer us to at least 3 persons that can confirm your answers to the questions above. These references must be working for at least 2 different organisations.
We will contact these persons and ask them to review the information you have given us. Therefore it is important you make sure that you have let them know we will use their contact information for this purpose, and that you consent to us sharing your information with them.
How your application is processed
We will assess the information you have provided us with to evaluate whether you meet the necessary terms to receive the Certified Officer title you have applied for. When you do, we will acknowledge you as a professional with a proven track record and register you as one of our accredited Officers. You will then also receive your SECO issued certificate and a digital badge.
In short these are the steps taken in after we receive your application for a SECO Certified Officer title:
- We evaluate the information submitted to us through the webform.
- If needed, we will ask for additional information.
- We will contact all referents and ask them to formally confirm your statements.
- After this confirmation we will evaluate your working experience to determine that it does indeed match what we expect of a SECO Certified Officer (we will look at relevance, duration, seniority, and your personal accomplishments).
- If your work experience meets our requirements you will be awarded the title you have applied for.
You can expect the result of our assessment within 4 workweeks. In most cases, it will be much faster.
What happens after your application is accepted
After your working experience has been assessed, and it was found that you meet the requirements to become a SECO Certified Officer, we will send you a message of initial confirmation. To finalise the procedure, you will be contacted by our back office for the administrative aspects of joining our exclusive SECO community. This includes:
- Making sure you are registered as a member of our SECO community.
- Making sure the contribution for the first year of your membership has been paid. At the time of writing this amounts to € 150,- per annum. Memberships are valid for the duration of 1 year and are renewed automatically. Before your memberships expires we will contact you to help you renew your title. If you want to cancel your membership, please contact us through firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Making sure we have verified your identity.
- Arrange for you to receive a hardcopy of your certificate.
- Letting you know how you can apply for a digital badge, and how you are to use it.
- Letting you know how you can register your Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits. SECO Certified Officers are expected to collect a minimum of 40 CPE credits per year. There is some leniency in this, but you must collect at least 120 CPE credits over a 3-year period. Please, visit our page for more information about our Continuing Professional Education program.
- Archiving all information that is relevant to your application. This information will be kept for as long as your are registered as a SECO community member. You can request us to purge your personal information, but be aware that without it we cannot verify your standing as a SECO Certified Officer and thus will be forced to revoke your membership and Certified Officer title.
Once you have obtained your SECO Certified Officer credentials, you will be able to add your title (S-CxxO) and digital badge to your résumé, e-mail and social media, a.o. As a member of our SECO community, you will also have access to the benefits we offer our members, including exclusive knowledge resources, interesting webinars, and other professional development opportunities.
Request an application form to become a SECO Certified Officer
If you have read the above and think you have what it takes to become a SECO Certified Officer, then we invite you to request an application form. We will assess your working experience, and if you meet our requirements, then we will gladly welcome you into the exclusive SECO community!
- Download the application form, using this link
- Download our Code of Conduct, Terms and Conditions of Use for SECO-Institute issued titles, and CPE policy and read them carefully
- Carefully read the application form, fill in all the required fields, and sign it
- Review your résumé and update it where needed
- If your résumé does not provide the information requested (see above and also the application form), then please write a short text complementing your résumé and attach that document as well
- Make a screened copy of your photo ID (we only need to be able to verify you are who you claim to be, thus name and photo, all other information can and should be hidden)
- Ask the persons you want to name as references to consent to SECO-Institute using their personal information to contact them
Submit the filled in application form, your résumé, supplemental working experience document (if any), and ID to email@example.com using the form below.
* We are aware that not all cultures treat names in the same manner. And also that gender information can be sensitive to some. To keep things simple we have chosen to follow the defacto standard that is commonly used in international settings by addressing people with their given name followed by their family name in our communication. We have also chosen not to ask for, nor use gender information in our communications. In some cases this might lead to less than optimal forms of addressing in our communication with our students, alumni, and others. We ask for your understanding if this is the case in your situation.