Close protection is an important area of expertise for security professionals, which helps to explain the existence of training courses that are dedicated to it. VIPs cannot be adequately escorted and protected by someone who lacks either in-depth knowledge or rigorous dedication. Bodyguard courses focus on the acquisition of both knowledge and skills required in the industry drawing on experience from the likes of UK royalty protection, commercial close protection, and military special forces.
However, those looking to become a bodyguard will also want to ensure that their chosen course meets statutory requirements for the Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence. By enrolling on and completing such a course, prospective bodyguards can ensure that they have the right skills for the job and apply for an SIA close protection licence to prove their qualification and make them eligible to apply for work in the UK and for UK based companies.
The minimum guideline for training that have been set by the SIA makes it necessary to first attend and pass a Level 3 Certificate in Close Protection Operations before a licence can be granted. Irrespective of any previous medical skills or qualifications, it will also be necessary for the applicant to pass the BTEC Level 2 Award in First Person on Scene Intermediate (FPOSi). Those applying for an SIA licence will also face a criminality check for any relevant criminal convictions in the last five years.
There is a wide range of settings in which those who complete a bodyguard course may make use of what they have learned from their programme, from corporate and executive settings to remote hostile environments. Different challenges are posed to the bodyguard in each of these settings, but a course that also presents the opportunity to obtain an SIA licence assures applicants that will soon be equipped with the required skills and knowledge to take on even the most daunting close protection duties.