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Recently, the local news in Paterson, North Jersey reported that a security guard was held at gunpoint by a driver who threatened him, robbed him, and then fled by car.

The question is, was this preventable? Hopefully, yes.  While on the one hand, depending on the situation, a guard should not remain in a state where his life is in danger, but what about being proactively defensive? Did the security guard try to trip the man after he was running? Did he chase him?

The central question rests on the hiring process. Here are some key questions to ask a security firm before hiring its private security guards.

1. How many years of experience do the security personnel have, and what was their experience? (Military, other security agencies, etc.

2. Do they have specific experience in the private security guard role that my organization needs? If so, what exactly were their previous, similar roles?

3. What would they do if held at gunpoint?  How would they try to defend themselves and catch the attacker? What verbal threats/information would they use? If your organization requires armed guards – do they carry guns? If not, do they carry batons?

4. Do you also use security cameras to track attacks/intruders?

5. Is there an emergency button on their person/cell phone that they could push in order to alert authorities?

6. What background checks did the security guards undergo before hiring?

There are variant levels of private security personnel. ISSM employs only top-level, highly experienced private security guards.  To be sure, even the most professional, experienced security guard can get into an unavoidable situation where preserving his life, or the life of those he’s guarding, is paramount to catching the perpetrator. At the same time, when hiring private security guards, you want to know that you have hired the best, increasing your chances of the level of security you are seeking.

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