8 Data Privacy Certifications and How to Get Them in 2023


Most digital interactions, whether on a computer, a mobile device, or a cash register, require data entry. As personal and business data becomes more valuable, so does knowing how to protect it.

No company can afford to process and store their customers’ personal data without proper safeguards when a single data breach can lead to a loss of credibility.

Therefore, professionals with knowledge of data protection best practices that can help companies comply with data protection regulations and protect customer data are in high demand.

But how can a data privacy professional demonstrate their value?

In this article, we discuss the importance and benefits of data privacy certification and outline 8 certifications you can earn to advance your career.

Table of Contents
  1. The Growing Demand for Data Privacy Certification
  2. Benefits of Getting Certified in Data Privacy
  3. Data Privacy Certifications and How to Get Them
  4. Summary

The Growing Demand for Data Privacy Certification

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts demand for privacy officers and information security analysts could grow 33% between 2020 and 2030.

That’s faster than the average growth rate for all other occupations!

Companies are increasingly looking for data protection officers to help them manage and prevent cyberattacks. With a data protection certification, you can show the high level of expertise that you have acquired.

Some certification programs also offer areas of study that you may not be able to learn through work experience, such as theoretical topics.

In addition, by participating in a data privacy certification program, you can connect with other professionals in the industry who may become professional contacts or even future colleagues.

Lastly, obtaining a data privacy certification can also boost your confidence in your skills and improve your ability to perform well on the job.

Benefits of Getting Certified in Data Privacy

Companies typically use personal and professional data, including payment information, contact information, and employee data. They usually seek to protect this data to prevent and counteract issues such as identity theft or fraud.

A good reputation for protecting sensitive data can encourage potential customers or clients to do business with them.

Companies also strive to comply with privacy regulations and standards to increase their credibility and ensure they use customer data legally and ethically.

8 Data Privacy Certifications and How to Get Them

Here are some of the best data privacy certifications available:

Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP)


The International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) offers the most comprehensive, up-to-date, and sought-after global privacy and data protection training and certification program: the CIPP, which focuses on the practical application of privacy laws and regulations.


CIPP is accredited to ANSI / ISO Standard 17024:2012 standard.

Who should get certified

It is recommended to data protection and security professionals responsible for information management, compliance, legal requirements, data governance, and human resources.

Because compliance regulations vary by location, the CIPP program also offers four concentrations, each relevant to a specific global region:

  • CIPP/A (Asia)
  • CIPP/E (Europe)
  • CIPP/US (United States)
  • CIPP/C (Canada)

How to prepare and get certified

To obtain the CIPP/US certification, you must pass a 2.5-hour, 90-question exam.

Preparation resources include:

  • IAPP training courses (available online)
  • live online and in-person classroom formats
  • free study guides
  • training from official training partners.

Certified Information Privacy Manager (CIPM)


The IAPP also offers the CIPM certification, which focuses on developing, implementing, maintaining, and managing a privacy program.


The CIPM is accredited to ANSI / ISO Standard 17024:2012.

Who should get certified

The certification is designed for professionals who implement and manage privacy regulations daily and those involved in risk management, privacy administration, auditing, or privacy analysis.

How to prepare and get certified

To get the CIPM certification, you must pass a 2.5-hour, 90-question exam. The exam for the CIPM tests the knowledge and skills needed to:

  • Develop an organizational vision
  • Organize a privacy team
  • Create and execute a privacy program framework
  • Communicate with various stakeholders
  • Measure performance throughout the privacy program lifecycle

Preparation resources include:

  • IAPP training courses
  • Textbooks
  • Free study guides
  • Lessons from official training partners
  • The Glossary of Privacy Terms

Certified Information Privacy Technologist (CIPT)


The CIPT is also offered by the IAPP and covers the development of secure software products, processes, and services, the skills required to protect data from any compromise, and the know-how to use new technologies to ensure customer privacy.


The CIPT is accredited to ANSI / ISO 17024:2012 standard.

Who should get certified

This certification program is particularly useful for software development, information technology, and information security professionals because it focuses on understanding data privacy from a technology perspective.

How to prepare and get certified

To earn the CIPT/US certification, candidates must pass a 2.5-hour, 90-question exam, which includes two new objectives:

  • Privacy Engineering
  • Privacy by Design Methodology

Preparation resources include:

  • IAPP training courses are available online and in in-person classroom formats
  • Free study guides
  • Training from official training partners

HealthCare Information Security and Privacy Practitioner (HCISPP)


The HCISSP certification, administered by the International Information System Security Certification Consortium (ISC), is for information security professionals responsible for protecting protected health information (PHI).

According to ISC, this is:

the only certification that combines cybersecurity skills with privacy best practices and techniques.

Who should get certified

The program helps healthcare professionals learn how to protect patient data, understand regulations related to patient data, and implement, manage, and evaluate security and privacy controls to protect their healthcare organization.

How to prepare and get certified

To earn the HCISSP certification, you must pass a three-hour exam with a score of 700 out of 1000 and demonstrate at least two years of cumulative work experience in one or more of the seven areas of the (ISC) HCISSP Common Body of Knowledge (CBK).

The ISC offers a range of exam preparation options, including instructor-led classroom and online training courses and self-study resources such as study guides, textbooks, and flashcards.

Certified Data Privacy Solutions Engineer (CDPSE)


The Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) introduced the CDPSE — the first experience-based, technical certification in the privacy field.

Who should get certified

The CDPSE certificate is mainly for data analysts and scientists, architects of data protection solutions, compliance officers, and software engineers.

The program gives each of the above the ability securely and comprehensively integrate data privacy by design into their work, whether they are developing new technologies, products, or processes.

How to prepare and get certified

To apply for the certification, one must have at least five years of professional experience in at least two areas of the Exam Content Outline.

Holders of the CISA, CISM, CGEIT, CRISC, CSX-P, or FIP certifications are exempt from 2 years of professional experience.

Preparation resources include:

  • The CDPSE Review Manual, available in print and electronic formats
  • Additional learning tools such as questions, answers, and explanations (QAE)
  • An online exam course
  • Virtual training

PECB-CDPO (Certified Data Protection Officer)


The Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB) Certified Data Protection Officer training gives you the knowledge, skills, and competency necessary to assume the role of Data Protection Officer in implementing a GDPR compliance program.


The CDPO certification is accredited to ISO /IEC 17024.

Who should get certified

It is designed for professionals with, ideally, previous experience in data protection.

How to prepare and get certified

To be certified as a PECB Data Protection Officer, candidates must pass an exam, have at least five years of professional experience (including at least two years in a data protection role), complete 300 hours of data protection activities, and sign the PECB Code of Ethics.

The PECB offers a course to prepare you for the Certified Data Protection Officer exam. The course also includes a practical component.

Certified in Data Protection (CDP)


The Identity Management Institute’s CDP certification is a comprehensive program focusing on international security standards and data protection laws.

Who should get certified

This certification is recommended for professionals seeking comprehensive data protection training and anyone looking to become familiar with data protection practices for international security standards and privacy laws that apply to each stage of the data lifecycle.

How to prepare and get certified

To be eligible for certification, candidates must be members of Identity Management Institute (IMI), which is an independent international organization that developed and administers the CDP designation. It uses the Critical Risk Domains (CRDs) to maintain the CDP training program and certify professionals worldwide.

The CDP program also includes risk analysis and basic security concepts.



Organizations with PrivacyTrust certifications have passed PrivacyTrust’s privacy and data protection audits.

Who should get certified

This is a data privacy certification for companies looking to build a trustful relationship with their customers. A PrivacyTrust seal on a website assures visitors that their personal data will not be shared with third parties.

How to prepare and get certified

Website owners can usually complete certification within 12 business days and must renew yearly.


Getting a data privacy certification is beneficial for your career because of its sheer authority and credibility.

This relatively new field promises intellectual and professional growth; a privacy certification can be your ticket into the industry or pave the way for a career change.

Enrolling in a certification program will put you in an environment with other professionals with different experiences and backgrounds. You will network and – who knows? – you might even land that exciting career opportunity you’ve been waiting for!

Masha Komnenic CIPP/E, CIPM, CIPT, FIP
More about the author

Written by Masha Komnenic CIPP/E, CIPM, CIPT, FIP

Masha is an Information Security and Data Privacy Specialist and a Certified Data Protection Officer. She has been a Data Protection Officer for the past six years, helping small and medium-sized enterprises achieve legal compliance. She has also been a privacy compliance mentor to many international business accelerators. She specializes... More about the author

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