The CRTO Certified Red Team Operator is an entry-level to intermediate security certification for penetration testers who want to advance their career and become red teamers.

The cybersecurity landscape is ever-evolving, and organizations are constantly seeking new ways to stay ahead of the curve.

One increasingly important approach is red teaming, where security professionals act as simulated attackers to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in an organization’s systems and network.

If you’re a penetration tester looking to upskill and specialize in this critical domain, the CRTO Certified Red Team Operator certification is a valuable stepping stone.

What is CRTO?

The CRTO certification validates your proficiency in the fundamentals of red teaming, equipping you with the tools and techniques to execute effective simulated attacks.

This entry-level to intermediate certification caters to penetration testers seeking to transition into red teaming roles or enhance their existing skills.

What does the CRTO course cover?

The CRTO course covers a wide range of topics, including:

  • Penetration testing fundamentals
  • Active Directory hacking
  • Social engineering
  • Exploitation
  • Post-exploitation
  • Privilege escalation
  • Lateral movement
  • Command and control

The CRTO exam is a hands-on exam that requires candidates to complete a series of tasks in a live lab environment.

The exam is designed to assess the candidate’s ability to apply the knowledge and skills they learned in the course to real-world scenarios.

Here are some of the benefits of obtaining the CRTO certification:

  • Demonstrates your knowledge and skills in red teaming
  • Helps you stand out from the competition in the job market
  • Increases your earning potential
  • Makes you a more valuable asset to your organization

If you are a penetration tester who is interested in learning more about red teaming, then the CRTO certification is a great option for you.

The CRTO exam: Testing your mettle

The hands-on CRTO exam throws you into a simulated live lab environment, where you’ll apply your acquired knowledge and skills to practical scenarios.

This performance-based assessment gauges your ability to execute real-world red teaming tactics and make critical decisions under pressure.

Why pursue CRTO certification?

Earning the CRTO certification boasts several advantages for your cybersecurity career:

  • Validate your expertise: Stand out from the crowd by demonstrating your red teaming proficiency to potential employers and clients.
  • Boost your earning potential: Certified red teamers often command higher salaries compared to their non-certified counterparts.
  • Enhance your credibility: The CRTO credential signifies your commitment to professional development and staying ahead of the cybersecurity curve.
  • Become a valuable asset: Equip yourself with the skills to conduct effective red team assessments, improving your organization’s security posture.

Ready to embark on your red teaming journey?

If you’re a penetration tester eager to delve into the world of red teaming, the CRTO certification is an excellent gateway.

By investing in this certification, you’ll gain the knowledge, skills, and industry recognition to thrive in this exciting and in-demand cybersecurity domain.

I have more questions! Where can I find more information?

The official CRTO website offers detailed information about the certification, training, and exam format. Additionally, online communities and forums dedicated to red teaming and penetration testing can be valuable resources for further exploration and questions.


Who is the CRTO certification for?

Penetration testers looking to transition into red teaming roles or enhance their existing skills in red team methodologies.

What are the prerequisites for taking the CRTO exam?

While there are no formal prerequisites, basic knowledge of penetration testing and Linux fundamentals is recommended.

What does the CRTO exam format look like?

It’s a 48-hour hands-on performance-based exam in a simulated live lab environment. You need to collect 6 out of 8 flags to pass.

What topics are covered in the CRTO exam?

The exam assesses your skills in areas like Active Directory hacking, social engineering, exploitation, post-exploitation, privilege escalation, lateral movement, and command and control.

What resources are available for preparing for the CRTO exam?

The official CRTO course materials, online communities, forums, and practice labs are valuable resources.

How much does the CRTO certification cost?

The cost varies depending on the training provider and chosen packages. Expect it to range from USD 400-500+.