CEH Certification Requirements: Everything You Need

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Are you feeling overwhelmed or lost trying to decipher the CEH certification requirements? You're not alone. Many people face challenges understanding the convoluted requirements and wondering if they must undertake official training before attempting the exam.

We recognize these concerns and crafted this comprehensive guide to clarify everything for you. We'll walk you through our article, detailing every essential CEH certification requirement.

We'll introduce you to two distinct paths that you can embark on to qualify for the CEH exam, share insights on critical topics you'll encounter, break down the costs you should anticipate, and provide a sneak peek into the exam's structure.

Stay with us as we simplify this journey together, ensuring you're well-equipped and confident in your pursuit of becoming a Certified Ethical Hacker.

About Certified Ethical Hacker

The Certified Ethical Hacker certification, often called CEH, is an entry-level certification offered by the International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council). CEH validates the holder's skills as an ethical hacker or penetration tester.

Please note that there are two distinct CEH exams: the ANSI, which is multiple-choice, and the Practical, a hands-on lab simulation. In this article, we are exclusively discussing the CEH ANSI exam and its certification.

This CEH certification covers the latest tools, techniques, and methods ethical hackers use to assess the security of an organization’s network, systems, and applications.

Two Paths to the Certified Ethical Hacker Exam

Candidates can take two primary pathways to attain the Certified Ethical Hacker certification, each with their own costs.

Without Official Partnered Training

The Certified Ethical Hacker certification can be earned without official training if certain requirements are met.

  • You must submit a non-refundable $100 USD application fee and have at least two years of work experience in information security.
  • EC-Council reviews your application to verify expertise across CEH exam topics, including:
    • Reconnaissance techniques
    • System hacking
    • Web application hacking
    • Wireless and mobile platform security
    • Cryptography
  • Once approved, you can purchase a CEH exam voucher directly from EC-Council for $950 USD or through Pearson VUE for $1199 USD.
  • The voucher is valid for one exam attempt within one year of purchase.
  • Those with CEH versions one to seven or instructors/trainers may also qualify without training.

With Official Partnered Training

The EC-Council offers various official training methods for the CEH certification. Candidates can choose from virtual instructor-led classes on the EC-Council's iClass platform, in-person sessions at Authorized Training Centers in over 140 countries, or CEH courses integrated into approved academic institutions.

  • CEH training courses:
    • Cost ranges from $2,199 to $3,499 USD.
    • Bundles include instruction, exam voucher, and retakes.
  • Self-study CEH courseware (does not include exam voucher):
    • Printed courseware with lab manual: $2,199 USD.
    • Online eCourseware with digital materials: $850 USD.

Things to note:

  • Training bundles offer convenience as a package deal.
  • Self-study allows independent learning at a lower price.
  • All options cover the core CEH exam knowledge areas.
  • Exam voucher must be purchased separately with self-study materials.
  • Compare total costs, including voucher, to decide the best value.

Required Knowledge

Nine domains comprise the Certified Ethical Hacker exam. These domains include information security basics, wireless network hacking, cloud computing, and cryptography.

Candidates learn about ethical hacking techniques, vulnerabilities, and countermeasures in each domain, ensuring they understand the cyber security landscape.

CEH Exam Domains
  • Information Security and Ethical Hacking Overview (6%): Covers the basics of information security, cyber kill chain, and ethical hacking principles.
  • Reconnaissance Techniques (21%): Footprinting methods, tools, and countermeasures; network scanning tools and techniques; and enumeration concepts and countermeasures.
  • System Hacking Phases and Attack Techniques (17%): Encompasses vulnerability assessment, system hacking concepts and methods, and details about malware threats and their countermeasures.
  • Network and Perimeter Hacking (14%): Focuses on sniffing techniques, social engineering methods, Denial-of-Service attacks, session hijacking, and evasion techniques for IDS, firewalls, and honeypots.
  • Web Application Hacking (16%): Dives into hacking web servers, web applications, SQL injection techniques, and their respective countermeasures.
  • Wireless Network Hacking (6%): Explores concepts and methodologies of wireless hacking, including Bluetooth hacking and security measures.
  • Mobile Platform, IoT, and OT Hacking (8%): Mobile platform attack vectors, security measures, IoT and OT hacking methods, tools, and countermeasures.
  • Cloud Computing (6%):Addresses cloud computing concepts, threats, hacking techniques, and security measures.
  • Cryptography (6%) : Covers the basics of cryptography, encryption algorithms, tools, and countermeasures.

Passing Score

What can you anticipate regarding question types, the total number of questions, and the minimum score required to pass the exam once you are prepared to take it? Let's find out.

Exam Overview

  • Exam Title: Certified Ethical Hacker (ANSI)
  • Exam Code: 312-50 (ECC Exam), 312-50 (Pearson VUE)
  • Number of Questions: 125 multiple-choice questions
  • Duration: four-hour time limit

Exam Administration

  • Formats: ECC Exam or Pearson VUE
  • Local proctor for private in-person exam
  • Live remote proctor for online exam
  • Open book format: No


  • Passing Score Range: 60% to 80%
  • The passing score (cut score) is the minimum number of questions that must be answered correctly to pass. It varies between exam forms.
  • The cut score is determined by the points assigned to each question, not a set percentage.

Final Steps

Once you’ve achieved CEH, what are your next steps? How do you get your certificate, and how can you show it off? What certificates should you consider next?

Obtaining Your Certificate

After successfully passing the exam, your digital certificate will be ready for download in your Aspen account within seven to ten days.

If you prefer a physical certificate, you can request one from the “Physical Certificate Printing” area of the EC-Council website. After making the payment, email certsupport@eccouncil.org with your 2Checkout Order Number, exam score transcript, and desired mailing address. Your certificate will be shipped, and tracking details will be sent to your registered email.

Upon achieving your CEH certification, you can use the certification name and logo. Ensure you follow the logo usage guidelines.

Showcasing Your Achievement

We will show you how to showcase your certification on LinkedIn and your website.

Displaying Your CEH Credential on LinkedIn:

  1. Log in to your LinkedIn account and go to your profile page.
  2. In the "Licenses & Certifications" section, click "Add" to add a new certification.
  3. Enter the certification name as "Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)" and the issuing organization as "EC-Council."
  4. Fill in the issue date and expiration date.
  5. Add the credential ID and the verification URL.
  6. Click "Save" to add the CEH certification to your profile.

Showcasing Your CEH on Your Website:

  1. Save a digital copy of your CEH certificate as an image file.
  2. Upload the image to your website using your platform's image tools.
  3. Hyperlink the image to the verification URL to showcase authenticity.
  4. Alongside the image, provide the credential ID.
  5. Add a short description of the CEH certification and what you learned.
  6. Use alt text for accessibility and SEO optimization.

Next Certifications

Once you have your CEH certification, it's a great time to think about improving your cyber security skills. Consider getting more certifications. You could consider CEH Practical, an extension of the CEH ANSI certification. However, the practical certification is less comprehensive than other penetration testing certifications.

OSCP (Offensive Security Certified Professional) is a highly regarded and thorough certification that goes deeper into penetration testing techniques and is seen as the gold standard among employers when accessing a candidate's real-world hacking skills.

You could also look into CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional), which is a globally recognized certification that focuses on managing and operating IT security.

Each of these certifications can greatly improve your skills and lead to more specialized jobs in cyber security.


We've guided you through the essentials of the CEH certification requirements. By now, you should clearly grasp the exam details, associated costs, and the subsequent steps after achieving the CEH certification.

To succeed in any certification, it's crucial to understand the content and practice consistently and thoroughly. Always approach your preparation with a strategic plan in mind.

Consider the following courses to enrich your learning experience further. The StationX Accelerator Program provides access to these, as well as mentorship and mastermind groups to help you succeed in your journey.

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  • Richard Dezso

    Richard is a cyber security enthusiast, eJPT, and ICCA who loves discovering new topics and never stops learning. In his home lab, he's always working on sharpening his offensive cyber security skills. He shares helpful advice through easy-to-understand blog posts that offer practical support for everyone. Additionally, Richard is dedicated to raising awareness for mental health. You can find Richard on LinkedIn, or to see his other projects, visit his Linktree.