Security Guards and Officers: Protecting People, Buildings & Events


What is a Security Guard?

A Security Guard or Security Officer is usually a privately-employed person who is paid to protect property and/or people. Security guards have responsibilities such as:

  • Act to protect property by maintaining a high visibility presence
  • Deter illegal and/or inappropriate actions
  • Observe (either directly, through patrols, or by watching alarm systems or video cameras) for signs of crime, fire or disorder
  • Take action and/or report incidents to their client, employer and emergency services as appropriate

Security personnel as either hired as individuals, or as an independent contractor or employee of a security company.

Security Guard Equipment

The types of equipment and tools that a security guard needs will vary depending on the specific assignment. Following is a list of the equipment that personnel may carry in the line of duty:

  • A uniform – This helps other to clearly identify them as security personnel. This helps those who need assistance know whom to ask for help.
  • Radio – Used to communicate with a centralized dispatch, main office, and with other personnel
  • Flashlight – Used to illuminate dark areas and also as a weapon, if necessary
  • Mobile phone – Use to contact other personnel, the main office or call the police, if necessary.

Security Guard Weapons

Depending on the assignment, and with the appropriate license, a security guard may carry a weapon to provide personal protection for themselves and others. The types of weapons may include:

  • A firearm, usually a pistol or handgun
  • A baton
  • Pepper spray or mace
  • A stun gun

For more detailed information on the nature of the work, see the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook on Security Guards.  The handbook describes the nature of the work performed by security professionals, the job outlook, information on training and advancement, how much a security guard earns, and more.

Security Guard Books

Following is a list of books related to the security guard profession. Learn how to start a career as a security guard, and get security guard training.

Private investigators with law enforcement or military experience often provide security services and personal protection services to their clients. Private Investigators often serve as bodyguards or personal security consultants due to their experience and knowledge in security-related fields. If you’re interested in starting your own security company, or at least offering this service to your clients, use the following security guard books to learn about:

  • How to get started with a career in the security field
  • How to get the the necessary training and development you need to find a job
  • The various types of positions and careers available, such as bank security guard, armored car driver, prison guard or corrections security, neighborhood security officer, bouncers, and more.

Following are some of the best-selling books on the subject:

  • The Security Handbook, Second Edition – The book covers everything from introductory to advanced topics. The book offers practical information and protective techniques that you can put into practice immediately. Learn about proper procedures for patrolling, communicating with others and how to write reports. Learn about arrest procedures and applicable laws, self-defense techniques, security equipment, security countermeasures and more.
  • Practical Security Training – Learn about the various types of practical training available for detectives.

Buy Security Guard Books and Equipment at


If you have any questions about what it takes to become a security guard, please visit one of the websites above, or post a comment below.


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