Training > Cybersecurity > Kubernetes Security Essentials (LFS260) + CKS Exam Bundle

Kubernetes Security Essentials (LFS260) + CKS Exam Bundle

Kubernetes Security Essentials (LFS260) provides the skills and knowledge on a broad range of best practices for securing container-based applications and Kubernetes platforms during build, deployment and runtime.

The Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS) program provides assurance that a CKS has the skills, knowledge, and competence on a broad range of best practices for securing container-based applications and Kubernetes platforms during build, deployment and runtime. CKA certification is required to sit for this exam.

Not sure where to start? You may consider reviewing our suggested CKS learning path.

EXAM SIMULATOR! Learners will now have access to an exam simulator, provided by, to experience the exam environment. You will have two exam simulation attempts (36 hours of access for each attempt from the start of activation). Simulation includes 20-25 questions (which are exactly the same for every attempt and every user (unlike those found on the actual exams) and graded simulation results.

PLEASE NOTE: Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS) Upcoming Program Changes on September 12, 2024.

Who Is It For

A Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS) is an accomplished Kubernetes practitioner (must be CKA certified) who has demonstrated competence on a broad range of best practices for securing container-based applications and Kubernetes platforms during build, deployment and runtime.
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What You’ll Learn

This course exposes you to knowledge and skills needed to maintain security in dynamic, multi-project environments. This course addresses security concerns for cloud production environments and covers topics related to the security container supply chain, discussing topics from before a cluster has been configured through deployment, and ongoing, as well as agile use, including where to find ongoing security and vulnerability information. The course includes hands-on labs to build and secure a Kubernetes cluster, as well as monitor and log security events.
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What It Demonstrates

Obtaining a CKS demonstrates a candidate possesses the requisite abilities to secure container-based applications and Kubernetes platforms during build, deployment and runtime, and is qualified to perform these tasks in a professional setting.
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Course Outline
Chapter 1. Course Introduction
Chapter 2. Cloud Security Overview
Chapter 3. Preparing to Install
Chapter 4. Installing the Cluster
Chapter 5. Securing the kube-apiserver
Chapter 6. Networking
Chapter 7. Workload Considerations
Chapter 8. Issue Detection
Chapter 9. Domain Review

Exam Domains & Competencies
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Cluster Setup10%
Use Network security policies to restrict cluster level access
Use CIS benchmark to review the security configuration of Kubernetes components (etcd, kubelet, kubedns, kubeapi)
Properly set up Ingress objects with security control
Protect node metadata and endpoints
Minimize use of, and access to, GUI elements
Verify platform binaries before deploying
Cluster Hardening15%
Restrict access to Kubernetes API
Use Role Based Access Controls to minimize exposure
Exercise caution in using service accounts e.g. disable defaults, minimize permissions on newly created ones
Update Kubernetes frequently
System Hardening15%
Minimize host OS footprint (reduce attack surface)
Minimize IAM roles
Minimize external access to the network
Appropriately use kernel hardening tools such as AppArmor, seccomp
Minimize Microservice Vulnerabilities20%
Setup appropriate OS level security domains e.g. using PSP, OPA, security contexts
Manage Kubernetes secrets
Use container runtime sandboxes in multi-tenant environments (e.g. gvisor, kata containers)
Implement pod to pod encryption by use of mTLS
Supply Chain Security20%
Minimize base image footprint
Secure your supply chain: whitelist allowed registries, sign and validate images
Use static analysis of user workloads (e.g.Kubernetes resources, Docker files)
Scan images for known vulnerabilities
Monitoring, Logging and Runtime Security20%
Perform behavioral analytics of syscall process and file activities at the host and container level to detect malicious activities
Detect threats within physical infrastructure, apps, networks, data, users and workloads
Detect all phases of attack regardless where it occurs and how it spreads
Perform deep analytical investigation and identification of bad actors within environment
Ensure immutability of containers at runtime
Use Audit Logs to monitor access

The Linux Foundation worked with industry experts and the Linux kernel community to identify the core domains and the critical skills, knowledge and competencies applicable to each certification. Performance-based exams were then developed based on the competencies that were identified.
Exam Details & Resources
Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS) candidates must have taken and passed the Certified Kubernetes Administrator (CKA) exam prior to attempting the CKS exam.

This exam is an online, proctored, performance-based test that requires solving multiple tasks from a command line running Kubernetes. Candidates have 2 hours to complete the tasks.

The exam is based on Kubernetes v1.30

Candidates who register for the Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS) exam will have 2 attempts (per exam registration) to an exam simulator, provided by  

Please review the Candidate Handbook, Curriculum Overview and Exam Tips along with other recommended resources below.

Certified Kubernetes Security Specialist (CKS) candidates must have taken and passed the Certified Kubernetes Administrator (CKA) exam prior to attempting the CKS exam.
Lab Info
For hands-on lab exercises, access to a Linux server or Linux desktop/laptop is required. Access to a public cloud provider, or VirtualBox on your machine is also needed. Lab exercises in this course have been tested in a GCP environment.

If using a cloud provider like GCP or AWS, you should be able to complete the lab exercises using the free tier or credits provided to you. However, you may incur charges if you exceed the credits initially allocated by the cloud provider.