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Become A Protection Specialist

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Working As A Protection Specialist

  • 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

  • $56,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Protection Specialist 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 Protection Specialist

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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Protection Specialist Career Paths

Protection Specialist
Security Officer Specialist Account Executive
District Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Officer Manager
Area Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Officer
Operations Officer
5 Yearsyrs
Loss Prevention Agent Loss Prevention Officer Security Supervisor
Security Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Loss Prevention Agent Police Officer Officer
Senior Officer
5 Yearsyrs
Loss Prevention Agent Police Officer Investigator
Loss Prevention Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Assets Protection Specialist Asset Protection Lead Loss Prevention Manager
Asset Protection Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Security Specialist Intelligence Analyst Security Manager
Security Director
10 Yearsyrs
Security Specialist Investigator Security Supervisor
Assistant Director Of Security
7 Yearsyrs
Security Specialist Investigator Security Manager
Security Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Assets Protection Specialist Security Supervisor
Loss Prevention Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Loss Prevention Officer Site Supervisor Superintendent
Resident Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Loss Prevention Officer Site Supervisor
Lead Security Officer
5 Yearsyrs
Force Protection Officer Operations Officer Security Manager
Chief Of Security
8 Yearsyrs
Sergeant Lieutenant Platoon Leader
Transportation Officer
5 Yearsyrs
Executive Systems Administrator Information Security Analyst
Securities Adviser
8 Yearsyrs
Sergeant Site Supervisor Lead Security Officer
Security, Shift Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Consultant Product Manager Product Management Director
Chief Product Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Loss Prevention Specialist Security Site Supervisor Security Guard Supervisor
Fire Safety Director
6 Yearsyrs
Protective Officer Special Police Security Assistant
Senior Security Officer
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Protection Specialist?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Security Monitor 2.2 years
Top Careers Before Protection Specialist
Cashier 10.5%
Internship 7.0%
Specialist 2.9%
Volunteer 2.6%
Server 2.5%
Manager 2.3%
Sergeant 2.3%
Top Careers After Protection Specialist
Cashier 3.4%
Internship 3.1%
Instructor 2.6%

Do you work as a Protection Specialist?

Protection Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

68.1%

Female

22.4%

Unknown

9.5%
Ethnicity

White

59.3%

Hispanic or Latino

19.2%

Black or African American

11.9%

Asian

6.0%

Unknown

3.6%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

61.5%

French

7.7%

Thai

3.8%

Chinese

3.8%

German

3.1%

Mandarin

2.3%

Portuguese

2.3%

Arabic

2.3%

Bosnian

1.5%

Russian

1.5%

Italian

1.5%

Urdu

1.5%

Cantonese

1.5%

Vietnamese

0.8%

Romanian

0.8%

Cheyenne

0.8%

Hungarian

0.8%

Nepali

0.8%

Filipino

0.8%

Tagalog

0.8%
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Protection Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

21.6%

The Academy

7.0%

Liberty University

5.8%

University of Cincinnati

5.3%

Arizona State University

5.3%

American University

5.3%

University of Maryland - University College

4.7%

Ashford University

4.4%

Central Piedmont Community College

4.1%

Strayer University

4.1%

Pennsylvania State University

3.8%

Columbia Southern University

3.5%

Central Texas College

3.5%

Kaplan University

3.2%

John Jay College of Criminal Justice of the City University of New York

3.2%

Metropolitan State University

3.2%

Towson University

3.2%

Georgia State University

2.9%

Johnson C Smith University

2.9%

University of Oklahoma

2.9%
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Majors

Criminal Justice

41.7%

Business

16.0%

Psychology

4.7%

General Studies

4.2%

Law Enforcement

2.5%

Sociology

2.5%

Communication

2.4%

Computer Science

2.3%

Management

2.3%

Liberal Arts

2.2%

Education

2.1%

Biology

2.1%

Social Work

2.0%

Political Science

2.0%

Accounting

2.0%

Law

2.0%

Criminology

1.9%

Information Technology

1.8%

Computer Information Systems

1.7%

Homeland Security

1.7%
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Degrees

Bachelors

42.4%

Other

26.1%

Associate

15.1%

Masters

9.5%

Certificate

3.8%

Diploma

1.4%

Doctorate

1.2%

License

0.5%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$56,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$27,000
Min 10%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$114,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Bank of America
Highest Paying City
Minot, ND
Highest Paying State
North Dakota
Avg Experience Level
2.2 years
How much does a Protection Specialist make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Protection Specialist in the United States is $56,308 per year or $27 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $27,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $115,000.

Real Protection Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Automation Protection Specialist Schneider Electric USA, Inc. Parsippany-Troy Hills, NJ Apr 18, 2016 $96,470 -
$100,000
Information Protection Specialist Adecco Group Na/Modis, Inc. Hartford, CT Nov 23, 2015 $93,915 -
$114,785
Information Protection Specialist Adecco Group Na/Modis, Inc. Bloomfield, CT Aug 24, 2016 $87,654 -
$108,524
Information Protection Specialist Motorola Solutions, Inc. Schaumburg, IL Sep 14, 2016 $73,853 -
$106,700
Electrical Protection Specialist Voith Hydro Inc. York, PA Oct 09, 2016 $63,945 -
$75,000
Intrusion Protection Specialist Zolon Tech, Inc. MD Sep 10, 2014 $62,774
Intrusion Protection Specialist Zolon Tech, Inc. MD Oct 09, 2014 $62,774
Crop Protection Specialist North Dakota State University Minot, ND Feb 01, 2015 $55,000 -
$70,000

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Top Skills for A Protection Specialist

  1. External Theft
  2. Safety Issues
  3. Surveillance Equipment
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Conduct Investigations on Internal/External theft.
  • Monitored for potential safety issues, assisting managers in maintaining safe and secure environment for associates and customers.
  • Maintain surveillance equipment including digital cameras and computer systems.
  • Direct interface to law enforcement for arrest and criminal investigations.
  • Maintain detailed documentation of store safety incidents, theft incidents, merchandise recoveries, and successful shoplifting apprehensions.

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Top Protection Specialist Employers

Jobs From Top Protection Specialist Employers

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