best cybersecurity courses with faded black background

6 Best Cybersecurity Courses You Need in 2021 [Learn Penetration Testing NOW]

🧠 According to the FBI, since the start of COVID-19, there’s been a 300% increase in cybercrimes.

What is cybersecurity?

Simply stated, cybersecurity is the protection of:

  • computer systems and networks
  • hardware, software, electronic data
  • services

from digital attacks.

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TLDR: Best Cybersecurity Courses

💥 Best for Newbies 💥
Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp 2021: Zero to Mastery

💸 Best Value 💸
Practical Security: Simple Practices for Defending Your Systems: Educative.io

Best Cybersecurity Courses: At a Glance

Interactive or video-based learningLevelDurationSupportCertificateCost
Practical Security: Simple Practices for Defending Your Systems: Educative.ioInteractiveIntermediate9 hours$39 for the course / $59 per month or $199 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp 2021: Zero to MasteryVideoBeginner26 hours$39 per month or $279 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
Web Security & Bug Bounty: Learn Penetration Testing: Zero to MasteryVideoBeginner10.5 hours$39 per month or $279 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
Ethical Hacking Course: Learn Ethical Hacking From Scratch: BitDegreeVideoBeginner27.5 hours$26.65 for the course
Ethical Hacking: System Hacking: PluralsightVideoBeginner4 hours$29 per month or $299 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
Introduction to Cybersecurity Tools & Cyber Attacks: CourseraVideoBeginner20 hours$49 per month for the course

Best Cybersecurity Courses

1. Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp 2021: Zero to Mastery

Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp is one of the best cybersecurity courses for beginners.

best hacking courses zero to mastery diagram of targets
Diagram of targets in the Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp on Zero to Mastery

Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp is a video-based course on Zero to Mastery for beginners. You’ll do all work on your local computer. But as the title suggests, this course is more aligned with a bootcamp, so be ready to learn… a lot.

🪖 TEN-HUT! A bootcamp is a short-term but intense education method meant to teach students employable tech skills.

Course Layout

In Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp, you’ll learn ethical hacking from scratch. With 22 modules, you’ll explore:

  • information gathering
  • scanning
  • vulnerability analysis
  • exploitation & gaining access

And much, much more.

In addition, you’ll learn Python from scratch so you can write your own hacking tools.

You’ll also build your own hacking lab where you’ll perform your attacks.

zero to mastery course outline and white hat/black hat diagram best hacking courses
White and black hat hackers in the Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp on Zero to Mastery

About the Instructor

Andrei Neagoie headshot creator of The Complete Web Developer in 2020 Zero to Mastery
Andrei Neaogie

Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp is taught by Andrei Neagoie and Aleksa.

Andrei is best known for teaching web development to almost half a million students and counting. He was also a Senior Software Developer in Toronto and Silicon Valley.

Aleksa is a Penetration Tester with more than 5 years experience in cybersecurity and ethical hacking.

🔥 Geena’s Hot Take

If you’re looking for the most comprehensive course on cybersecurity, Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp is the one you’re looking for… especially if you’re an absolute beginner.

Do yourself a favor and sign up for this course to become a cybersecurity whiz.

💰 Cost: $39 per month or $279 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
26 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes

Use code FRIENDS10 at checkout and SAVE 10%


📚 Looking for a kickass cybersecurity handbook for Linux? Check out the No Starch Press banger Linux Basics for Hackers.


2. Practical Security: Simple Practices for Defending Your Systems: Educative.io

Practical Security is one of the best cybersecurity courses for intermediate learners.

Patching lesson in the course Practical Security on Educative.io

Educative.io has an interactive learning environment where you’ll work on exercises within the browser. It’s the only interactive course on our list (the rest are video-based).

In the intermediate course Practical Security: Simple Practices for Defending your Systems, you’ll learn how to prevent high-profile security breaches.

➡️ This course is based on the book Practical Security by The Pragmatic Programmers.

Course Layout

With 6 modules, you’ll discover techniques to keep attackers from entering your system such as:

And more.

Throughout the course, you’ll learn the best practices for detecting and preventing vulnerabilities.

Vulnerabilities lesson in the course Practical Security on Educative.io

💰 Cost: $39 for the course / $59 per month or $199 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
9 hours
📉 Level:
Intermediate
🖥️ Format:
Interactive learning
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


📚 If you’re looking for a top-rated cybersecurity book, check out Cybersecurity – Attack and Defense Strategies.

3. Web Security & Bug Bounty: Learn Penetration Testing: Zero to Mastery

Web Security & Bug Bounty is one of the best cybersecurity courses for beginners.

Course outline of Web Security & Bug Bounty on Zero to Mastery

Web Security & Bug Bounty is another course on Zero to Mastery for beginners. But it’s a bit different than Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp.

For starters, it’s much shorter (10.5 hours vs 26). And instead of learning the ins and outs of hacking, you’ll learn penetration testing through the scope of bug bounty hunting.

➡️ Bug bounty hunting is a program offered by websites and organizations where devs can get paid for finding and reporting bugs related to security vulnerabilities.

Course Layout

In Web Security & Bug Bounty you’ll learn penetration testing from scratch. You’ll also learn how to attack systems with known vulnerabilities. With 21 modules you’ll explore:

And more.

You’ll also create a virtual lab that you’ll use to execute your attacks.

Finally, you’ll discover how to make a career of bug bounty hunting.

Bruteforce attacks in the course Web Security & Bug Bounty on Zero to Mastery

💰 Cost: $39 per month or $279 per year for all courses and Learning Paths
⏲️ Duration:
26 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes

Use code FRIENDS10 at checkout and SAVE 10%


📚 Here’s another excellent book for cybersecurity newbies, Cybersecurity Essentials.

4. Ethical Hacking Course: Learn Ethical Hacking From Scratch: BitDegree

Ethical Hacking Course is one of the best cybersecurity courses for beginners.

best hacking courses computer desktop with code
Code in the Ethical Hacking Course on BitDegree

BitDegree is a video-based platform that can most easily be compared to Udemy: The courses are a la carte, videos are plentiful, and there are frequent sales.

Course Layout

Ethical Hacking Course: Learn Ethical Hacking from Scratch takes you on an adventure of not only helping others finding vulnerabilities in their systems, but improving the security of your own computer.

In this 27.5 hour course for beginners, you’ll find 13 modules covering:

  • footprinting
  • scanning
  • web penetration testing
  • WPA2 cracking
  • system hacking

And beyond.

💰 Cost: $26.65 for the course
⏲️ Duration:
27.5 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


📚 Cybersecurity for beginners is a breeze with the book Penetration Testing: A Hands-On Introduction to Hacking.

5. Ethical Hacking: System Hacking: Pluralsight

Ethical Hacking: System Hacking is one of the best cybersecurity courses for beginners.

Pluralsight is a video-based platform where you’ll do all work on your local computer.

Ethical Hacking: System Hacking is a more nefarious cybersecurity course. It will show you how to “pwn” your targets. And while it uses black hat language, this course should only be used for white hat hacking.

🎩 Black hats use their hacking powers for evil. White hats use their cybersecurity skills for good.

Course Layout

There are 7 modules in this course where you’ll discover how to gain access to systems by:

  • cracking passwords
  • escalating privileges
  • executing applications
  • hiding your tools
  • clearing logs and evidence

And much more.

pluralsight course outline best hacking courses
Outline for the course Ethical Hacking: System Hacking on Pluralsight

💰 Cost: $29 per month or $299 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
4 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


6. Introduction to Cybersecurity Tools & Cyber Attacks: Coursera

Cybersecurity challenge in the course Introduction to Cybersecurity Tools & Cyber Attacks on Coursera

Like most other courses on our list of best cybersecurity courses, Coursera is a video-based platform where you’ll do all work on your local computer. You’ll also find plenty of articles.

Course Layout

Cybersecurity Tools & Cyber Attacks takes you on a journey to understand basic cybersecurity. With 4 modules, you’ll explore:

  • the history of cybersecurity
  • types of hackers and their motives
  • key security concepts
  • key security tools

And more.

💰 Cost: $49 per month for the course
⏲️ Duration:
20 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


Best Cybersecurity Courses: Conclusion

Today we looked at the best cybersecurity courses including:

💥 Best for Newbies 💥
Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp 2021: Zero to Mastery

💸 Best Value 💸
Practical Security: Simple Practices for Defending Your Systems: Educative.io

So regardless of your cybersecurity needs, we think these are the best cybersecurity courses out there.


Cybersecurity enthusiasts are also reading:



  1. What are the best cybersecurity courses?

    For newbies, we think Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp by Zero to Mastery is the way to go. For value, we liked Practical Security: Simple Practices for Defending Your Systems by Educative.io.

  2. What is cybersecurity?

    Cybersecurity is the protection of computer systems and networks, hardware, software, electronic data, and services from digital attacks.

  3. Is Zero to Mastery's Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp worth it?

    We think so. In Complete Ethical Hacking Bootcamp, you'll learn ethical hacking from scratch. You'll explore information gathering, scanning, vulnerability analysis exploitation and gaining access. You'll also build your own hacking lab where you'll perform your attacks.

  4. What is a black hat hacker?

    A black hat hacker uses their penetration testing skills for nefarious purposes by exploiting weaknesses of a system. They'll release malware, hold computers hostage, or steal passwords.

  5. What is a white hat hacker?

    A white hat hacker is a computer hacker that uses their cybersecurity skills for good by helping individuals or companies identify vulnerabilities in their systems. You can learn more about different types of hackers in our list of best cybersecurity courses.