Frequently Asked Questions

Q: When does your next class start?

A: The classes are self-paced, and new students can begin at any time. The mentoring sessions each week are designed to allow students – working on different material – a way to ask questions and get the help they need, regardless of the other students’ progress.

Q: What if I already know the Shodan material – do I have to pay for the training, or can I simply move onto the Nidan level?

A: A new student that feels confident they can pass the Shodan exams should immediately ask to take the tests. The new student will have only one week to request the exams and successfully pass both the written and practical. If they fail to pass both, they must complete the Shodan material before moving onto the Nidan material.

Q: How many levels do I have to complete to be a professional penetration tester?

A: We designed the course so that a student who finishes the 1D (Shodan) and 2D (Nidan) levels within the Hacking Dojo will have the appropriate knowledge to be a professional network penetration tester. For students who want to specialize after completing the 1D and 2D course, we have levels dealing with Web application pentesting, advanced network hacking, and reverse engineering. These specialty courses are available only to Nidan graduates.

Q: Has anyone that attended your class become professional penetration testers?

A: We are proud to say “yes.” We also have professionals who attend the classes to improve their skills. All our instructors are currently employed as pentesters; which means we don’t just teach theory, we teach real-world skills. In addition, we encourage our more advanced students to interact with those who are working their way up the class structure, so that other perspectives are shared.

Q: Do new students have access to all the levels of instruction at once? Or do students advance one level at a time?

A: Students advance one level at a time and will only have access to their appropriate skill level. This ensures that a student has the demonstrable skills and knowledge for the next level before advancing; otherwise they would struggle with the new material and hinder the progress of others during the live mentor training sessions. Once the student has demonstrated to the instructor their competency in the skills needed to move on, they do so. Competency is demonstrated through completion of a hands-on, written and practice exam.

Q: How do I practice what is taught at the Hacking Dojo?

A: There are two methods for practicing the course material – the first is to build your own lab, and the second is to use the online lab provided at no extra cost to you. Students often create their own lab, in order to have a convenient place to develop their skills at hacking; however, the HackingDojo is the first Hacker Training Course to offer all students access to their online lab at no additional cost, making learning that much more convenient.

Q: What types of targets exist in the online lab?

A: We have designed the lab to emulate real-world networks, which include a variety of Microsoft Windows and Linux systems, as well as network devices such as firewalls, routers, and switches. Various applications exist on these different systems as well, to provide different challenges.

Q: Once I complete the Shodan material, how do I move onto the Nidan material?

A: Students must past a “belt test” to move onto the next level. Once a student is ready to move onto the next stage of instruction, they must pass an exam that includes both a written (hands on) and practical test. Once a student passes the test, they may purchase the next level material.

Q: How long do I have to wait to take my next “belt” (level) test?

A: The student is in charge of deciding when to test out of a particular skill level into the next. It is theoretically possible that a student could enter the course one day, and complete all levels the next day (this scenario is probably very unlikely, however, considering the volume of information and instruction needed to be successful within the field of professional penetration testing).

Q: How long do I have to wait before I can test again if I failed a test?

A: Two weeks, minimum. This allows students who barely failed to retake the test without having to go another month of training; it also “encourages” students to take some time and relearn material that they didn’t do too well on.