& SECURITY GUARD TRAINING 

About Security Guards



Security Guards Armed and Unarmed


Generally speaking, a security guard’s job is to protect property from vandalism, fire, theft and other forms of illegal activity.  They usually do this by patrolling an indoor or outdoor location keeping an eye out for suspicious activity and using radio communication to contact law enforcement, fire or medical personnel when needed.  They are also called upon to protect people.  Security guards work in a wide variety of settings, large and small.  They can be hired to watch over museums, office buildings, department stores, shopping centers, theatres, airports, colleges, public parks and a number of other locations.


Job Skills and Duties

Security guards must have strong observation skills, as they are asked to always be vigilant.  Some settings require guards to watch a series of monitors from a single location within a building for anything out of the ordinary and occasionally having to patrol the area.  Other security positions require a constant foot patrol.  Working professionals, who guard areas such as shopping malls, parking lots etc. often do their patrols in vehicles.  Security guards can work any time day or night protecting people as well as property.

Training Requirements

There are no specific educational requirements to be a security guard but usually employers will look for someone with a high school diploma or its equivalent.  Most security guard positions will offer some kind of on-the-job training.  Those who are hired as ARMED GUARDS are required to have additional training and certification. The amount of training will sometimes depend on the setting in which the armed guard will be working. Depending on State laws armed guards have age requirements to be licensed.  Further certification may be necessary depending on the type of security job.  Guards can receive training in emergency procedures, property rights, detention of criminal suspects, report writing, public relations and other subjects.  Separate licensing is also required for positions that involve carrying a weapon.  A background check and drug testing is another common requirement among all security employers.  

Jobs within the Security Field


Security guards can vary in their level of difficulty and responsibility, and even their level of danger.  Night security guards will deal very little with people, working by themselves or maybe with a couple of associates.  Security guards who work in banks, armored cars or other establishments where the exchange of money is involved have to be more aware and are usually armed.



Security guards perform an important duty, as they are asked to protect property, money and people. The level of security involved will depend on the type of protection and the items or people being protected.  In most cases, the only requirement is that you be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma to enter the security field at which time you may start your New York State Security Guard Training Programs.  This will gain you certification for Security Guard license. Depending on whether you are seeking an armed or unarmed license will determine the amount of training involved. 

The Law

The security act of 1992 mandates the training and licensing of all security guards. The act also requires that all private security guard schools and instructors must also be certified. The Department of Criminal Justice Services controls private security training
and the New York State Department of State, Division of Licensing Services controls the licensing and registration of all security guards.   


The First Required Course       The Eight Hour Pre-Assignment
This is a general introduction course. Upon successful completion of this course the future guard is issued a training certificate.  This certificate must accompany the security guard license application when submitted to the Department of State.

The Second Required Course      (O.J.T.)  The 16 Hour On-the-Job Training 
Once the applicant has started to work he or she has 90 days to complete the 16 hour On-the-Job Training Course (O.J.T.) This training program should be relevant to the guard required duties and the needs of the employer.

The Third Required Course   The Eight Hour Annual In-Service Course
This training must be completed each calendar year. This course is designed to meet their current training needs and to update guards on changes in the law regarding the security field.
  This includes class room training review of  N.Y.S. Penal Law Article 35 followed by a written examination then range re-certification using their service weapon.
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