About the Security+ Exam

CompTIA Security+ SY0-601


  • Exam length: 90 minutes maximum
  • 72-90 questions
  • Mostly multiple choice with a single answer
  • 10 to 15 multiple choice with multiple answers
  • 3 to 4 exhibits/simulations, often with multiple actions
  • Mark and review: Yes
  • Go back and change answers: Yes
  • Real exam cost: About $360

Domains covered

  • Domain 1: Attacks, Threats, and Vulnerabilities
  • Domain 2: Architecture and Design
  • Domain 3: Implementation
  • Domain 4: Operations and Incident Response
  • Domain 5: Governance, Risk and Compliance


Exam Content

The content of this revision of the Security+ exam is 75% similar to its predecessor, SY0-501. New to this version (SY0-601):

  • Recognizing types of attacks and using tools
  • Cryptic questions, many with 2 correct answers
  • Acronyms are emphasized. Know all of them.
  • Cryptography is less in focus and split among two other domains
  • Much on IoT security
  • Little knowledge of ports required
  • More multiple answer/multiple choice


Exam Structure

You will receive from 72 to 90 questions, but will make a total of 100 choices. You won’t be told how many points each question is worth, but it is generally speculated that one selection equals one point. When you get an exhibit or scenario, it will involve multiple selections.

Example: You are asked to configure a few rules on a simulated firewall. You make 6 to 8 selections based on the options provided. Each selection is worth a point.

Expect up to a dozen items with multiple-answer choices. The majority of the remaining questions will be single-answer.

Exam Time Crunch

Time is a key factor in this exam. Almost all of the people who fail the exam take too long to examine each question. You only have 90 minutes. Make them count.

Tip: Get through the exam quickly, answering what you know, and marking questions for review. When you complete the first viewing of the questions, you will have ample time to go back and review the more difficult questions.

Prep: Take the online quizzes. They are designed to march you through the questions in an aggressive fashion so that you will learn to read and answer the questions quickly and accurately.