I hear you man, its a lot $$$.
I have a very limited budget (my own $$) and have been researching training & certs in the Reversing arena, not much out there & what is out there seems sort of iffy or really new.
I'm also looking at some other certs, but this one is now high on my list 1st as it directly relates to my past work analyzing malware and I'd like to be certified if I do have the skills/experience.
The SANS stuff seems to be very tight knit, limited 3rd party info & guidance.
I don't contest them wanting you to use there training materials to take the exams, but in this case, i would just like to see what they will specifically ask -> i.e. a practice test.
This way I know if I really need the full training.
I would hate to pay $2K+ only to find I already have most the needed info.
But I don't know if paying $899 & then potentially failing would be any less painful.
At least if I got the training I have something to keep, and am almost assured of passing test.
I saw the objectives and I think I am good with most of them, but I just don't really know!
Per there Challenge Exam option, it says: "Many professionals have the experience to meet the certification objectives identified."
I definitely don't know everything, but I did malware stuff professionally for a few yrs at a AV company.
Funny now that I am switching jobs, I find that I feel like I don't know anything.
But then I see the cert objectives & say, I am pretty sure I know that!
I saw iitac.org, but I couldn't get any info on them & looks like they're not in the US.
Looks cool but no idea?