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Become A Lead Security Officer

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Working As A Lead Security Officer

  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
  • Getting Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Repetitive

  • $171,362

    Average Salary

What Does A Lead Security Officer Do

Security guards and gaming surveillance officers patrol and protect property against theft, vandalism, terrorism, and illegal activity.

Duties

Security guards and gaming surveillance officers typically do the following:

  • Protect and enforce laws on an employer’s property
  • Monitor alarms and closed-circuit TV (CCTV) cameras
  • Control access for employees and visitors
  • Conduct security checks over a specified area
  • Write reports on what they observed while on duty
  • Serve as witnesses for court testimony
  • Detain violators

Security guards, also called security officers, protect property, enforce rules on the property, and deter criminal activity. Some guards are assigned a stationary position from which they monitor alarms or surveillance cameras. Other guards are assigned a patrol area where they conduct security checks.

Gaming surveillance officers and gaming investigators act as security agents for casinos. Using audio and video equipment in an observation room, they watch casino operations for suspicious activities, such as cheating and theft, and monitor compliance with rules, regulations, and laws. They maintain and organize recordings from security cameras, which are sometimes used as evidence in police investigations.

Guards and officers must remain alert, looking out for anything unusual. In an emergency, they are required to call for assistance from police, fire, or ambulance services. Some security guards are armed.

A security guard’s responsibilities vary from one employer to another. In retail stores, guards protect people, records, merchandise, money, and equipment. They may work with undercover store detectives to prevent theft by customers and employees, detain shoplifting suspects until the police arrive, and patrol parking lots.

In office buildings, banks, hotels, and hospitals, guards maintain order and protect the organization’s customers, staff, and property.

Guards who work in museums and art galleries protect paintings and exhibits by watching people and inspecting the contents of patrons’ handbags.

In factories, government buildings, and military bases, security guards protect workers and equipment and check the credentials of people and vehicles entering and leaving the premises.

Guards working in parks and at sports stadiums control crowds, supervise parking and seating, and direct traffic.

Security guards stationed at the entrances to bars and nightclubs keep underage people from entering, collect cover charges, and maintain order among customers.

Security guards working in schools and universities patrol the buildings and grounds, looking for suspicious activity.

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How To Become A Lead Security Officer

Most security guard jobs require a high school diploma. Gaming surveillance officers sometimes need experience with security and video surveillance. Most states require guards to be registered with the state, especially if they carry a firearm.

Education

Security guards generally need a high school diploma or equivalent, although some jobs may not have any education requirements. Gaming surveillance officers also need a high school diploma or equivalent and may need experience with video surveillance technology depending upon assignment.

Training

Although most employers provide instruction for newly hired guards, the amount of training they receive varies. Most guards, however, learn their job in a few weeks. During those few weeks, training from their employer typically covers emergency procedures, detention of suspected criminals, and proper communication.

Many states recommend that security guards receive approximately 8 hours of pre-assignment training, 8–16 hours of on-the-job training, and 8 hours of annual training. This may include training in protection, public relations, report writing, deterring crises, first aid, and other specialized training related to the guard’s assignment.

Training is more rigorous for armed guards because they require weapons training. Armed guards may be tested periodically in the use of firearms.

For gaming surveillance officers and investigators, some employers prefer candidates with previous work experience in casinos or individuals with a background in law enforcement. Experience with video technology can also be helpful in using surveillance systems and software.

Drug testing may be required as a condition of employment and randomly during employment.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Most states require that guards be registered with the state in which they work. Although registration requirements vary by state, basic qualifications for candidates are as follows:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Pass a background check
  • Complete training

Guards who carry weapons usually must be registered by the appropriate government authority. Armed guard positions have more stringent background checks and entry requirements than those of unarmed guards. Rigorous hiring and screening programs, including background, criminal record, and fingerprint checks, are required for armed guards in most states.

Some jobs may also require a driver's license.

Advancement

Some guards advance to supervisory or security manager positions. Those with experience or postsecondary education should have an advantage. Armed security guards have a greater potential for advancement and enjoy higher earnings.

Some guards with management skills open their own security guard business. Guards can also move to an organization that needs higher levels of security, which may result in more prestige or higher pay.

Important Qualities

Decisionmaking skills. Guards and officers must be able to quickly determine the best course of action when a dangerous situation arises. 

Patience. Security guards and officers may need to spend long periods standing and observing their environment without distractions.

Observation skills. Guards and officers must be alert and aware of their surroundings, and be able to quickly recognize anything out of the ordinary.

Physical strength. Guards must be strong enough to apprehend offenders and to handle emergency situations.

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Lead Security Officer Videos

A Day in the Life of a CIO

Mall of America Security: Protect, Train, Lead.

Ed Montooth, Chief Security Officer, DuPont Corporation

Lead Security Officer Jobs

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Lead Security Officer Career Paths

Lead Security Officer
Patrolman Security Officer Security Supervisor
Assistant Director Of Security
7 Yearsyrs
Patrolman Lieutenant Executive Officer
Branch Chief
9 Yearsyrs
Security Director Loss Prevention Officer Security Specialist
Chief Of Security
8 Yearsyrs
Security Supervisor Operations Manager Program Manager
Deputy Director
9 Yearsyrs
Emergency Medical Technician Deputy Sheriff Security Director
Director Of Public Safety
11 Yearsyrs
Emergency Medical Technician Police Officer Security Supervisor
Fire Safety Director
6 Yearsyrs
Site Supervisor Maintenance Technician Production Supervisor
Logistics Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Site Supervisor Case Manager Investigator
Loss Prevention Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Security Manager Securities Consultant Security Officer
Loss Prevention Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Driver Delivery Driver Maintenance Technician
Maintenance Director
11 Yearsyrs
Sergeant Platoon Sergeant
Operations Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Security Supervisor Security Manager
Security Director
10 Yearsyrs
Driver Dispatcher Police Officer
Security Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Safety Manager Security Specialist
Security Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Security Manager General Manager Security Officer
Security Site Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Sergeant Security Officer
Security, Shift Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Operations Director Chief Of Operations
Senior Officer
5 Yearsyrs
Security Site Supervisor Security Manager Public Safety Officer
Senior Security Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Security Site Supervisor Loss Prevention Officer Surveillance Officer
Surveillance Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Security Director 3.9 years
Security Manager 3.5 years
Head Of Security 3.0 years
Security Assistant 2.3 years
Security Officer 2.3 years
Security Agent 2.2 years
Security Guard 1.9 years
Security 1.8 years
Top Careers Before Lead Security Officer
Cashier 4.8%
Supervisor 3.0%
Manager 2.7%
Internship 2.4%
Officer 2.4%
Top Careers After Lead Security Officer
Supervisor 4.1%
Manager 3.5%
Driver 3.5%
Security 2.0%

Do you work as a Lead Security Officer?

Lead Security Officer Demographics

Gender

Male

74.3%

Female

24.4%

Unknown

1.3%
Ethnicity

White

58.7%

Hispanic or Latino

18.1%

Black or African American

11.0%

Asian

8.0%

Unknown

4.1%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

65.3%

French

5.3%

German

4.2%

Portuguese

3.2%

Italian

3.2%

Chinese

2.1%

Japanese

2.1%

Arabic

2.1%

Mandarin

2.1%

Swedish

1.1%

Danish

1.1%

Teochew

1.1%

Estonian

1.1%

Vietnamese

1.1%

Hebrew

1.1%

Norwegian

1.1%

Hindi

1.1%

Hmong

1.1%

Korean

1.1%
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Lead Security Officer Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

23.1%

Community College of the Air Force

12.0%

Ashford University

6.4%

Pennsylvania State University

4.8%

Liberty University

4.8%

Kaplan University

4.8%

Colorado Technical University

4.8%

The Academy

4.0%

Columbia Southern University

4.0%

American University

4.0%

Strayer University

3.2%

University of Maryland - University College

3.2%

University of Massachusetts - Lowell

2.8%

Remington College

2.8%

Ashworth College

2.8%

Cerritos College

2.8%

Western Illinois University

2.8%

Park University

2.4%

Minnesota State University - Mankato

2.4%

Glendale Community College

2.4%
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Majors

Criminal Justice

34.8%

Business

19.0%

Psychology

5.3%

General Studies

4.4%

Management

3.8%

Computer Science

3.4%

Information Technology

2.9%

Communication

2.6%

Law Enforcement

2.6%

Liberal Arts

2.3%

Accounting

2.3%

Finance

2.2%

Homeland Security

2.1%

Medical Technician

1.9%

Electrical Engineering

1.8%

Political Science

1.8%

Medical Assisting Services

1.7%

Graphic Design

1.7%

Nursing

1.6%

Health Care Administration

1.6%
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Degrees

Other

32.8%

Bachelors

30.5%

Associate

17.9%

Masters

10.6%

Certificate

5.8%

Diploma

1.5%

Doctorate

0.6%

License

0.2%
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Lead Security Officer Videos

A Day in the Life of a CIO

Mall of America Security: Protect, Train, Lead.

Ed Montooth, Chief Security Officer, DuPont Corporation

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Top Skills for A Lead Security Officer

  1. Security Personnel
  2. Security Procedures
  3. Emergency
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Initiate immediate investigative and response actions when a security contingency is identified and respond security personnel to alarms as necessary.
  • Conduct quarterly tours of other DC area federal facility construction operations to advise on establishment of site security procedures.
  • Implemented Executive and Senior Leadership protocols for tracking/monitoring company travel for emergency notifications.
  • Monitor medications and client activity to provide a safe and organized facility.
  • Reported all on-site daily activities to appropriate supervisors/personnel.

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Top 10 Best States for Lead Security Officers

  1. Alaska
  2. District of Columbia
  3. North Dakota
  4. Virginia
  5. New Hampshire
  6. Massachusetts
  7. Wyoming
  8. Nebraska
  9. Vermont
  10. Hawaii
  • (56 jobs)
  • (193 jobs)
  • (65 jobs)
  • (966 jobs)
  • (129 jobs)
  • (1,026 jobs)
  • (42 jobs)
  • (120 jobs)
  • (34 jobs)
  • (103 jobs)

Top Lead Security Officer Employers

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Jobs From Top Lead Security Officer Employers

Lead Security Officer Videos

A Day in the Life of a CIO

Mall of America Security: Protect, Train, Lead.

Ed Montooth, Chief Security Officer, DuPont Corporation

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