Who needs a security licence?

Each state and territory has its own licensing requirements and regulator. Most states and territories require both businesses and individuals to be licensed. Go to your State or Territory for an overview of the licensing requirements and the contact details for each regulator.

 

Australian Capital Territory

In the ACT, security employers must hold a Master Licence, and security industry employees must hold licences when conducting the following security activities:

• Patrolling, guarding, watching, or protecting property
• Acting as a crowd controller
• Acting as a bodyguard
• Giving advice about security equipment
• Selling security equipment
• Installing, maintaining, monitoring, repairing or servicing security equipment
• Acting as a security consultant
• Carrying out surveys and inspections of security equipment

NOTE: Requirements for technical security employee licence applicants have changed. Applicants for the following security employee licence sub-classes no longer need to have training qualifications in order to apply for a licence in those sub-classes:

  • selling security equipment (2B);
  • carrying out surveys and inspections of security equipment (2C);
  • giving advice about security equipment (2D); and
  • installing, maintaining, monitoring, repairing, or servicing security equipment (2E).

This change brings the ACT in line with most other jurisdictions regarding the requirements for these sub-classes.

Regulator: Access Canberra
Phone: 13 22 81
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: GPO Box 158, Canberra City ACT 2601

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator


New South Wales

In NSW, security employers (whether sole traders or corporate entities) must hold a Master Licence, and only Master Licence holders can employ licensed security personnel.

Who can apply for a Master licence?
• Individuals
• Corporations
• Government agencies (including public authorities)

Entity types, such as trusts, associations and partnerships, are not able to apply for Master licences. If a business operates as a partnership, the application for a Master licence must be made by one of the partners, with the others declared as close associates.

Master Licence Categories
MA - Self-employed
MB - Provide no more than 3 persons to carry out security activities on any one day
MC - Provide between 4 and 14 persons to carry out security activities on any one day
MD - Provide between 15 and 49 persons to carry out security activities on any one day
ME- Provide 50 or more persons to carry out security activities on any one day

NOTE: Changes to the regulation now refer to the number of persons a company 'provides' rather than 'employs'. This is significant for sub-contracting arrangements.

Security industry employees must hold either Class 1 or Class 2 licences, depending on the security activities they perform:

CLASS 1

A. Unarmed Guards*
B. Bodyguards
C. Crowd Controllers
D. Guard Dog Holders
E. Monitoring Centre Operators
F. Armed Guards

CLASS 2

A. Security Consultants
B. Security Sellers
C. Security Technician Plus#
D. Security Trainers

*Class 1G. Loss Prevention Officers are now included in Class 1A.

*Class 2C includes Locksmiths and former class 2E. Barrier Equipment Specialists and 2F. Electronic Equipment Specialists

NOTE: If a person is self-employed (e.g. a one person alarm installation business), he/she must have both a Master Licence AND the relevant individual licence.

Regulator: Security Licensing & Enforcement Directorate (NSW Police)
Phone: 1300 362 001
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: Locked Bag 5099, Parramatta NSW 2124

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.


Northern Territory

Security Employers (whether sole traders, partnerships or corporate entities) must hold a Private Security Firm Licence.

Security Industry Employees must hold a:

• Private Security Officer Licence - which allows a person to work as a private security officer;
• Crowd Controller Licence - which allows a person to work as a crowd controller; or a
• Combined Crowd Controller / Private Security Officer Licence - which allows a person to work as both a crowd controller and a private security officer.

Private security officers and crowd controllers must meet a standard of probity. Security officers and crowd controllers must have also successfully completed the appropriate competency-based training requirements in order to obtain a licence.

It is a condition of all licences that they must comply with any Code of Practice approved by the Minister. A security officer or crowd controller may be subject to disciplinary action if he or she is found to have contravened the provisions listed in the codes of practice relevant to their category of licence.

Regulator: Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade
Phone: 1800 193 111
Email: [email protected]

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.


Queensland

A Security Firm licence is required for a person, partnership or corporation that engages crowd controllers, security officers, bodyguards, private investigators, security advisers and/or security equipment installers and supplies their services to others for a fee.

Security Firm Licences can be issued to individuals, partnerships or corporations; the licence will specify which functions can be supplied under the licence.

There are no specific qualification requirements for a Security Firm Licence, however all key staff (i.e. staff involved in the management of the business) must meet the same criteria that apply to an individual licence.

Security Provider Licences (which are issued only to individuals) are issued under two classes:

Class 1 (manpower)

• Bodyguard
• Private investigator
• Crowd controller
• Security officer (cash in transit)
• Security officer (unarmed)
• Security officer (monitoring)
• Security officer (dog patrol)

Class 2 (technical)

• Security adviser
• Security equipment installer

Those who, for reward, install, repair, service or maintain any security equipment, including but not limited to the following, are required to be licensed:

alarms
monitoring systems
audio or visual recording systems
electric, electro-magnetic or biometric access control devices
motion, infra-red, microwave or contact detectors
safes or vaults.
NOTE: If a tradesperson is performing the general functions of a locksmith in their day to day job they must hold a security provider licence (Individual - Class 2).

Regulator: Office of Fair Trading
Phone: 13 74 68
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: Industry Licensing Unit, GPO Box 3111, Brisbane QLD 4001

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.


South Australia

In South Australia individuals, partnerships and companies supplying investigation agent or security agent services must all be licensed.

Individuals must meet the licensing requirements and hold a licence; in partnerships, each of the partners must meet the licensing requirements and hold a licence; for companies operating a business, the body corporate (company) must apply for a licence and nominate a manager for the business. The manager must meet the licensing requirements and hold a licence.

Investigation agent means a person who does one or more of the following:

• Repossessing goods
• Debt collection
• Executing court orders
• Recovery of rates, taxes or money
• Private investigation
• Searching for missing persons
• Obtaining evidence for legal proceedings

Security agent means a person who does one or more of the following:

• Protects, guards or watches people or property
• Provides dogs or other animals to protect or guard people or property
• Prevents, detects or investigates offences in relation to people or property
• controls crowds
• Provides advice on security alarm or surveillance systems
• Hires out or supplies security alarm or surveillance systems
• Installs or maintains security alarm or surveillance systems

Regulator: Consumer and Business Services
Phone: 131 882
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: GPO Box 1719, Adelaide SA 5001

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.


Tasmania

In Tasmania any person or company who carries out any of the following business activities requires an Agent’s Licence; any employee undertaking any of the following activities requires an Employee Licence:

Security Guard activities:

• Guarding property (including retail loss prevention)
• Keeping property under surveillance (including retail loss prevention)

Crowd Control activities:

• Screening entry (this does not include simply checking admission payments, Invitations or passes)
• Monitoring or controlling behaviour
• Removing persons from premises

Inquiry Agent activities:

• Private investigations
• Obtaining evidence for the purpose of legal proceedings
• Searching for missing persons
• Any other prescribed activity

Commercial Sub-Agent activities:

• Repossessions
• Debt collection
• Executing court orders
• Levying distress (bailiff authorised to collect a debt or repossess property on behalf of a creditor)
• Any other prescribed activity

Regulator: Consumer, Building and Occupational Services
Phone: 1300 654 499
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: GPO Box 56, Rosny Park TAS 7018

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.


Victoria

In Victoria security firms and businesses, and employees of security firms and businesses must be either licensed or registered.

Licenses
Manpower services (guarding, crowd control, investigations etc.) require licences.

Business operators - manpower services business operators who provide any of the following services require a Private Security Business Licence:

• Security guarding services - which includes: armed and unarmed guards, cash-in-transit, guarding with a dog, control room operators and monitoring centre operators
• Crowd control services
• Investigation services
• Bodyguard services
• Private Security training services

NOTE: If a security business installs security equipment and then sub-contracts the monitoring of this equipment (under a security officer function) then that business will require both a Security Licence and Registration.

Employees - manpower services employees (security guards, crowd controllers, investigators and bodyguards) require a Private Security Individual Operator Licence.

Registration
Any person who installs security equipment or provides advice regarding security equipment requires registration.
NOTE: Registration is also required by any business offering the services of others to undertake these services.

Business operators – businesses providing security advice or security equipment installation services require Private Security Business Registration.

Employees - security advisers and security equipment installers require Private Security Individual Registration.

Regulator: Licensing and Regulation Division (VIC Police)
Phone: 1300 651 645
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: GPO Box 2807, Melbourne VIC 3001

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.


Western Australia

In Western Australia a business or individual providing security services must hold the appropriate licence.

Agent (Business) Licences
Businesses supplying security products or services must hold the appropriate Agent licence.

The following licences are available:

• Security Agent Licence – authorises the supply of security officers, security consultants or security (equipment) installer’s services.
• Crowd Control Agent Licence - authorises the supply of crowd control services.
• Inquiry Agent Licence - authorises the supply of investigation services.

Non-Agent (Individual) Licences
Employees who perform security services need to hold the appropriate Non-agent licence.

The following licences are available:

• Security Officer Licence - to watch, guard and protect property.
• Security Consultant Licence – to investigate and advise on matters relating to the watching, guarding and protection of property; includes security service and equipment sales.
• Security Installer Licence – to install security equipment (does not apply to installers of security equipment in vehicles, vessels or aircraft).
• Crowd Controller Licence – to monitor or control the behaviour of persons, screen persons for entry or remove people from premises. Required for licensed premises, places of entertainment and public or private events or functions.
• Investigator Licence – to investigate the conduct of individuals or corporations or the character of individuals, perform surveillance work or investigate missing persons.

Holders of Agent licences are not permitted to perform the duties of the other (non-agent) licence classes unless they also hold the appropriate non-agent licence. They are only permitted to supply the holders of other licences. A self-employed alarm installer, for example, would need to hold both an Agent and Non-agent licence.

Regulator: Licensing Enforcement Division (WA Police)
Phone: 1300 171 011
Email: [email protected]
Postal address: Locked Bag 9, East Perth WA 6892

DISCLAIMER: The information above is a summary only of the licensing requirements in each State and Territory. For full, detailed information you MUST visit the website of the relevant regulator.