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Security Guard


A security guard is employed by an organization, company or agency to patrol, guard, monitor, preserve, protect, support and maintain the security and safety of personnel and property. Security guards deter, detect and report infractions of organizational rules, policies and procedures. Security guards help limit or prevent unauthorized activities, including but not limited to trespass, forcible entry or intrusion, vandalism, pilferage, theft, arson, abuse and/or assault.

Age Requirement:

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age.

Licensure Requirements:

Applicants seeking to become licensed/registered to work as a security guard in New York State must submit an application to the New York State Department of State, Division of Licensing Services. General requirements for licensure/registration of a prospective security guard in New York State are that all applicants must complete an 8-hour pre-assignment training course and must not have been convicted of a serious criminal offense. Applicants who wish to be an armed guard must also complete a 47-hour firearms course and submit the certificate issued for completion of this course with the application for a license.

Police officers separated from military service (retired) are considered civilians and must register as a security guard and complete all required training. When 'moonlighting,' a peace officer is considered a security guard and must register for a license and complete all training. A security guard who is otherwise subject to regulation with respect to registration and training by the federal government in the performance of his or her duties is exempt from licensure/registration, as is a security guard providing services on a voluntary basis and peace officers while working in their official capacity for their primary employer. Active police officers are exempt from the definition of security guard. This means that actual police officers who accept secondary employment are not required to register or complete training. The latest information and requirements for licensure are available on the New York State Department of State, Division of Licensing Services website at

Fees: (as of August 1, 2012)

  • $75 -- Division of Criminal Justice Services fingerprints fee and an applicable fingerprint vendor fee (payable to MorphoTrust USA)
  • $16.50 -- FBI Fingerprint fee (payable to MorphoTrust USA)
  • $36 -- Registration, 2-year term (payable to the Department of State)
  • $25 -- Registration renewal, biennial

Licenses Issued and Active:

From January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011, there were 83,139 licenses issued for this occupation.
As of June 25, 2012, there were 172,415 active licenses outstanding for this occupation.

Licensing Authority:

New York State Department of State
Division of Licensing Services
One Commerce Plaza
99 Washington Avenue
P.O. Box 22001
Albany, New York 12201-2001
Phone: (518) 474-4429
Fax: (518) 473-6648

Standard Occupational Classification:

33-9032 - Security Guards
To learn more about this occupation search the Occupational Information Network (O*Net).


Fees stated and other information contained in this report are subject to change. Please contact the licensing authority listed above for the most current information.

This page was last updated on 8/3/12.

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