Security officer

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What does a Security Officer do?

A security officer maintains a safe environment on behalf of their employers. They ensure the staff, customers, visitors and business premises are secure. They patrol perimeters, use surveillance equipment to monitor activity and perform security checks required for visitors to the site.

Working as a Security Officer

  • Inspecting buildings and entry points to ensure they are appropriately secured and alarmed
  • Actively preventing losses and damage to stock by performing regular inspections and reporting any potential breaches
  • Apprehending any trespassers, shoplifters or unauthorized individuals, while using powers of detection when necessary
  • Conducting interviews, recording observations and securing surveillance footage in the event of an incident
  • Performing regular maintenance of security equipment including: reporting any damage, identifying malfunctions and researching replacements

How much does a Security Officer make in the United States?

Average base salary
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72.5k salaries reported, updated at May 24, 2020
$13.20
per hour
The average salary for a security officer is $13.20 per hour in the United States.
Most common benefits
  • Pet insurance
  • Employee assistance program
  • Life insurance
  • 401(k)
  • Vision insurance

Where can a Security Officer earn more?

Compare salaries for Security Officers in different locations
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Frequently asked questions
Common questions about being a Security Officer

Will I need to carry a gun?

Each role is different as some security officers will need to carry guns. You will need to undergo special firearms training and earn a permit to carry a firearm. Most states have a Department of Security, a Bureau of Security and Investigative Services or a Security Regulatory Board that will be able to offer advice and provide guidelines for earning a license.

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Do security officers work with the public?

Some security officers work extensively with the public, conducting security checks on visitors and escorting them around the site. Others work in retail and act as the public face of their employer while dealing with customers. Other roles will focus on keeping stock safe by monitoring and maintaining security systems often through the night, which involves minimal contact with the public.

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What hours do security officers work?

Security is a 24-hour business and security officers can perform a wide variety of roles within numerous positions, with varying degrees of flexibility. Some security officers work fixed office hours during the day, while others work nights or part-time. Being a security officer can be an ideal job for someone who desires flexibility.

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What kind of person makes a good security officer?