What Are the Requirements of Becoming a Security Guard?

The training that security guards have to have varies from state to state in terms of the official requirements, but for the most part, the level of training that security guards should have is fairly consistent. The training that security guards have is immensely important, as it is a big determinant of their ability to carry out their duties effectively, including providing outstanding security and being able to react quickly and efficiently in various perilous or suspicious situations. In the State of California, the following are the requirements of becoming a security guard, with unarmed and armed security guards both having different requirements:


Unarmed Security Guard Requirements

In the State of California, the unarmed security guard requirements are:

  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Have to complete a 4-hour course on security guard training. This course can be offered by either a designated training company or by the private security company itself.
  • Have to have a thorough background check completed, including a criminal background check that completed both through the Federal Bureau of Investigation and through the California Department of Justice.


Armed Security Guard Requirements

Armed security guards have to face additional requirements in order to become certified, as the very nature of having access to armed force dictates this. The requirements, in addition to the ones listed above for unarmed security guards, are mainly in regards to the firearm. More specifically, they involve being grated a firearm permit by the State of California. The requirements are:

  • Have to be a United States citizen or be considered a permanent resident.
  • Have to successfully complete a training course that is 14 hours on how to use and carry firearms.
  • Have to apply for a firearm permit.

For the training course, 6 hours are devoted to the firing range and 8 hours are devoted to classroom instruction. The actual training includes:

  • Weapons handling
  • Shooting training
  • Weapon terminology
  • Sensitivity training, including moral, legal, and ethical issues
  • Emergency training and protocols

To obtain a firearm permit as a security guard, you will have to pay an $80 application fee and submit a registration form specifically for security guards that includes a Live Scan form. In addition, you will also be liable to pay $38 for the Firearm Eligibility form, as well as $19 and $32 for a FBI processing and DOJ processing fee, respectively. You will be able to pay these fees  all at once on most websites.


For more information on the required forms, including the security guard Live Scan forms to submit fingerprints, you can visit the official Bureau of Security and Investigative Services at www.bsis.ca.gov.


First Security Services always makes sure that each and every one of its guards is completely certified and has the necessary training requirements. In addition, we also provide our own training to make sure that all of our guards adhere to our high standards. Contact us today!