SIA Licences – Security Guarding – Who needs a licence?

by SIA Site Admin // December 11

Who needs a licence?

Private Security Industry Act 2001

If you are responsible for the security of property and premises, including patrols, surveillance, cash in transit, guarding people against assault and handling dogs for security purposes and employed under contract you will require a licence.

Who will need a licence?

Anyone involved with work of a security guarding nature by way of business or employment supplied under contract will require a licence. This includes employees, employers, managers, supervisors and directors of security companies. Click here for further details

What is a licensable activity?

Guarding premises against unauthorised access or occupation, outbreaks of disorder or damage; guarding property against destruction (including providing a physical presence, or carrying out patrols or surveillance), damage or theft; and guarding one or more persons against assault.

Examples of a licensable activity

  • Guarding premises or property.
  • Guarding people against harm
  • Guarding cash or other valuables in transit.
  • Guards in supermarkets and shopping centres, guards at building sites.
  • Personal bodyguarding.
  • Security staff at concerts will need a licence if their services are supplied under contract and they are wholly or mainly employed to keep order.
  • Stewards employed under contract at entertainment venues, sporting events, demonstrations, protests or similar events where their security duties are more than just incidental and includes providing a physical presence, guarding against disorder, protecting property and generally maintaining order.
  • Security staff employed under contract to monitor CCTV screens.

Who will not need a licence?

*NB The SIA is currently looking at the issue of in-house security guards and whether they too will require a licence. Click here for further details

*NB The SIA is also currently looking at the issue of security guarding exemptions Click here for further details.

  • *Security guards employed in-house.
  • *Stewards employed directly in-house and carrying out guarding duties (except on licensed premises where they will be required to have a door supervisors licence). Anyone working in an official capacity at an event or proceeding but only assisting by giving information, issuing directions, checking tickets and helping the general public.
  • People who may occasionally be required to maintain order and discipline amongst individuals but are not security guards, such as teachers.
  • People who carry out security activities incidentally to their main activities. E.g. a shop assistant who may be responsible for locking up at the end of the day.
  • Those employed to check tickets, invitations or passes such as cinema ushers will not require licence.
  • Non operational support staff in the Security Guarding sector e.g. porters and handymen.
  • Installers of CCTV equipment.