The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) was originally founded in 1982 in the US as the Association of Better Computer Dealers (ABCD). The organisation consisted of key hardware and software vendors who wished to establish an open dialogue between the industry and its broad stakeholder group of partners and customers.
In 1992, ABCD changed its name to CompTIA and expanded its scope of activities to include public advocacy, liaison with government and the education of IT professionals.
Training was considered a crucial element in the development of the industry, and, in 1992, CompTIA introduced its first vendor-neutral certifications, which were obtained by passing approved examinations.
The first of these was CompTIA A+, which provides an entry-level certificate with an exam that covers the maintenance of PCs, mobile devices, laptops, operating systems and printers. This was followed by CompTIA Network+, which covers network technologies, installation and management, and is internationally recognised by employers as the essential network qualification for IT staff.
Over one million CompTIA A+ certificates have been awarded thus far, and CompTIA A+ and CompTIA Network+ qualifications are recognised by employers worldwide.
CompTIA and information security certifications
The CompTIA Security+ qualification was launched in 2002 to meet the growing demand for qualified and specialised information security professionals. Building on the knowledge gained through obtaining A+, Network+ and Server+, CompTIA Security+ covers network security, compliance and operational security, threats and vulnerabilities, application, data and host security, access control and cryptography. This qualification is held by more than 45,000 IT professionals working in 147 countries.
CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP) was introduced by CompTIA in 2011 and is intended to be a 'master' level qualification. Designed to build on the knowledge obtained from the CompTIA Security+ study programme, CASP enables candidates to learn how to apply critical thinking across a broad spectrum of security disciplines to implement solutions that directly map to enterprise drivers. It is approved by the US Department of Defense (DoD 8570) to meet IA technical, management and system architect/engineer certification requirements.