Private Investigations and Personal Security/Private Security Statistics


On a national average, how much more likely is a business without professional, trained security guards to be the victim of criminal activity than one with security guards?

Also, in the long run would a company end up paying our more money for security or lose more in the event of a crime?

Thank you in advance for your time and reply.

Stephen G.


Let me begin by apologizing for the delay in responding to your question.  The holidays are a crazy time!

In my quest for an exact answer to your question, I couldn't locate any specific crime rates with respect to comparing businesses with or without security guards.  I can tell you that security guards are mainly used (and most worthwhile) in areas where visibility is a key consideration.  For example, convenience stores with security guards standing at the entrance/exit will definitely enjoy lower rates of shoplifting than those without guards.  They are also useful in places like malls, parking garages, corporate facilities, etc.

Ultimately, what I tell anyone in your position is to a very simple mathematical formula - cost of potential loss vs. cost of security.  There are two main reasons to hire private security - loss prevention or supervision.

A security guard hired through a private firm is probably going to cost you anywhere from $10-$20 per hour and even more if they're armed.  This is a hefty cost to bear.  It must make sense for your business.  This opinion is based on a financial loss basis.  

The other main use for private security is access control or supervision.  This is more difficult to quantify.  How much is security worth to you?  A security guard controlling who accesses a building might be a tougher situation to determine what your potential loss could be.  Stolen merchandise?  Liability for employee safety?  A liability situation is more difficult to quantify in financial terms.  One big lawsuit might pay for a guard for years in the wrong scenario.

You have a very important decision to make and I hope I gave you some concrete guidelines to determine what is best for you.  Please feel free to contact me with any further questions.

Wishing you good health and happiness,
Sean Carroll  

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Sean Carroll


I can answer just about any question which relates to police work, personal security, home & business security, or general law.


I am a 9 year veteran of a major metropolitan police department as a Major Crimes Detective. I have prior experience in the private security sector as well. I also previously owned a security solutions business where we specialized in digital security and surveillance systems including residential and commercial alarms.

I have both a Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree in Criminal Justice.

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