A security guard is a private
person who is employed to protect property and people. Usually security guards
are uniformed and act to protect property by observing (either directly, through
patrols, or by watching alarm systems or video cameras) for signs of crime, fire
or disorder; then reporting any incidents to their client, employer and
emergency services as appropriate.
Security officers with police
powers are called Security police.
Security guards also perform
access control at building entrances and vehicle gates by ensuring that
employees and visitors display proper passes or identification before entering
the facility. Security guards are often called upon to respond to minor
emergencies (lost persons, lockouts, dead vehicle batteries, etc.) and to assist
in serious emergencies by guiding emergency responders to the scene of the
incident and documenting what happened on an incident report.
The security guard motto is to
"observe and report." Contrary to popular belief, security guards are
not normally expected to make arrests or otherwise act as police officers.
However, security guards do enforce company rules and can act (as would any
other person) if necessary to protect lives or property. Security guards are
often trained to operate emergency equipment, perform first aid, take accurate
notes and write effective reports, and perform other tasks as required by the
property they are protecting.