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5 Common Misconceptions about Security Guards

Misconceptions about security guards and the services they provide are quite common. Some people envision stereotypical bumbling “mall cops,” while others picture guards who just sit in a booth watching monitors. The truth is security guards are highly trained, skilled individuals who can perform a wide range of jobs. Here are 5 of the most common misconceptions about professional security guards and the truth about what they do, brought to you by ADS Guards, one of the top security companies in Hayward.

1. Anyone Can Work as a Security Guard

Professional security guards go through formal and rigorous training to prepare them for many scenarios and situations. They know how to react to a variety of incidents, from shoplifting and fights to threats and fires. Trained security guards also follow a specific chain or action, know how to take detailed reports, and can adapt to the needs of many industries. 

Working as a professional security guard requires a stringent licensure and training process. In California, unarmed guards must undergo a 40-hour certified training course and pass an exam to obtain a guard license. Armed guards must also receive additional training to receive permits to carry a firearm, baton, and pepper spray. Professional guards must keep their training and certification current, recertify weapons permits every year, and remain current on security practices.

2. Security Guards Aren’t Effective at Deterring Criminals

Criminals don’t want to target buildings with security. They want weak targets that allow them to commit a crime quickly and without being detected. A security guard posted at the entrance sends a clear message that deters criminals and makes it difficult for them to commit a crime and escape before police arrive. 

The Department of Homeland Security completed a study that discovered security cameras prevent crime, but only when people believe there is someone on the other end of the camera watching. This is how security guards work. When they are visible, they demonstrate the building is defended and someone is watching.

3. Security Guards Are Only for Addressing Crime

Some businesses employ security guards primarily to address crime, which is often the case with construction sites, shopping centers, and educational facilities. Still, security guards can perform many other services aside from simply deterring crime. They can also help elderly customers, provide first aid, and evacuate the building in an emergency.

4. Security Guards Are Essentially “Light” Police

Some people view security guards as aspiring police officers who lack the training and legal powers police possess. The truth is a security guard is a professional position with its own strict requirements and standards. Security guards can be armed or unarmed depending on the situation. They also go through a strict training, certification, and licensure process. However, like police, security guards do have the power to make an arrest if they see someone commit a felony and they can reasonably detain the individual with probable cause.

5. Security Guards Are Too Expensive

It’s a common belief that security guards are only for the wealthy or very high-end stores like jewelry stores. However, many security companies offer affordable services that are designed for companies both large and small. Even small businesses can often afford to hire security guards, especially when you consider the savings associated with reduced shoplifting, employee theft, and other costly problems.

If you need professionally trained security guards for your business or residential property, reach out to ADS Guards, a leading provider of professional guard services in Hayward. Call one of our friendly representatives today at 1-800-794-1550 to learn more.