A Beginners Guide to becoming a Close Protection Officer

Not open for further replies.


Full Registered User
Someone's probably asked something similar like this before, but how are the employment prospects in the uk for CPOs at the moment? Took my CPO course with NSC not too long ago, and still in uni, but I'd like to find some short term work over the summer. Also, how would you go about getting work in HEs without the army background? Currently 20yrs and taking a BSc Econ in International Politics, and working on completing my medic training with St. Johns as well.


Full Registered User
hellow its me again jus thourght id check in and tell you im going to do my CPO HE course at longmoor training and my freind a ex squaddie has connections with a HE company and they said they would take me even though i am diabetic and have no military exp. cheers for the info any way guys :)


Longterm Registered User
Hello mbaade and cpkarl,
If I were being totally honest I'd have to say to both of you , pull in the reins and get a few years under your belts lads.
20 is a great age but , unless it's in uniform with 16 weeks training behind you and a platoon of equally highly trained guys around you , hostile environment is not where an un-experienced chap still at uni' should be contemplating himself . It's the word 'hostile' that gives the clue there .
If I were you , and I know I'm not so forgive me , I'd get myself a Door Supervisors' license , get some experience of confrontation and team-work in a public area , learn some useful life skills and a few more ropes and then re-assess your ideas say when you're 24-ish . To be honest it's highly doubtful anyone would use you at your age , even with a newly acquired CP license and those that might ought to looked at through narrowed eyes . Dodgy.
The non-military background is not neccesarily a problem . It depends on the area you want to specialise in but don't aim too high . Take a less ambitious aim for the moment . Go for the outer rings first . 'Easier to hit and a lot more of them . A few concerts , maybe a club or six . That'll test your mettle , but even then most teams will look at you sideways if your only 20 years old . I really don't mean to sound condescending at all but it's not like 'Ultimate Force' or 'The Body Guard '. People really do get hurt , and a lot worse . People with a lot more experience than you .
Enjoy college , get some years in , then take another look at it .
Sorry to burst your bubbles but that's my opinion .
Good luck to you both . Think carefully .


Full Registered User
Ladies and Gentlemen hello my name is Neil the information i am finding on this site is amazing and very helpfull indeed i have a couple of questions if i may . With regards firstly to age im reading a lot of concerns from younger folk with regards their age and experience i on the other hand am at the other end of the spectrum i am coming up soon to 44 years of age and have been out of the armed forces for some years now . I have had the desire to persue this line of work for many years but for one reason or another have not been able to persue it now i am in a position in life to follow this career path and the bottom line is am i now too old ? does the industry prefer younger fresh ex military or is there still a place for the older wiser yet still a newcomer to the industry any honest thoughts and advise would be greatly appreciated again excellent posts and info i thank you all for your time in supplying me with your knowledge stay safe thanks again Neil


Full Registered User
As a newbie to the forums I'd really like to thank you Nomad for that very informative post!


New Member
Any beginners guide to starting in Close Protection.
Should start with a chapter with the simple message.

Chapter 1.


If they make it to chapter 2, and still continue, well at least you've give them fair warning.

Chapter 2.

Close Protection World Forum.

Consult this forum. Read it and ask all the questions that you need an honest answer to regarding CP work.

If they get to chapter 3, well they aren't suited to this work.
as they are either mad, walters, suicidal fantacists, or haven't read any of the sections on CPW.

Merry Christmas Ladies.


Longterm Registered User
Well I would just like to thank the many people over the last two years that have read this post and found it useful and that was the intention, to answer questions that were not always obvious at first.

Oddjob, you obviously are an old hand and probably could write an even better version than I have. Certainly you may well be right with chapter 1!

Merry Christmas everyone and thanks again for your kind words :)


New Member
Like others I found your article very useful, im looking at entering this business as a CP, im 42 and have not done anything like this before, as i've been self employed most of my life as an electrical engineer with a burning ambition to do this type of work, and have reached a point in my life where I actually want to now do something about it. What are the possibilities of employment for someone of my age just graduating from a course with no other experience other than life itself?



Longterm Registered User
"Your only making it worse for yourself!"

Like others I found your article very useful, im looking at entering this business as a CP, im 42 and have not done anything like this before, as i've been self employed most of my life as an electrical engineer with a burning ambition to do this type of work, and have reached a point in my life where I actually want to now do something about it. What are the possibilities of employment for someone of my age just graduating from a course with no other experience other than life itself?


Welcome MS.
Straight answer......Nil.

Alternative strategy to improve that situation.

1) Use all the training/contact/views references posted on here at CPW to get an idea of who you want to do your CPO course with. IT, is a personal choice and i would use someone who provides/deals with the employment/placement of CPO,s. They are better placed to utilise your skillsets that you may not know you possess, but they can see a use for.
IE Lateral thinking.Your electrical engineering background may prove usefull to a company that requires a team to secure its assests/property or client base. A switched on CPO provider would be able to use your experience in said industry as a means to getting a foot in the door or to help bolster their resume for securing the contract.
As in : We can provide a security detail consisting of a team who have intimate knowledge of working in the Electrical Engineering sector.
So first find out your strengths and build on your weaknesses.

2) Where to start!
Lets be honest here. Forget HECPO. It is a fools dream. WOM will get you a foot in the door but only on the basis of proven ability. To do this type of work requires recent experience from a military background.Preferably infantry/paras/RM/RMP etc.Most ex-SF will be doing their own thing and have nothing to prove in this sector. You are more likely to bump into them on your training ground as DS/TL or Training Provider than on operations. Training in theatre is not an option. A very cool switched on at all times head is.
.The recently released Peter Moore, whose CPD team was disarmed with the guise of incorrect paperwork.Used as a ploy to lower their guard. Not, as one would expect, a bustle of weapon brandishing militia clad Jihadists. It was due to very careful planning that the security detail was disarmed and secured without the whole situation going loud.
"What you do not plan for is what catches you out!"
Should be a handy phrase for you to recall ' IF' you pursue this chosen path.
Hmmmmm. CPO,s require a huge amount of people skills. If you are of a mardy/tactless,immature lazy,bullying introverted nature. Add as you feel fit crew. Then , forget this type of work. You are dealing with people. So you must have a natural empathy for this type of work. A caring nature, but not a pushover. Ultra confident in your abilities and mindset.Smart dress and manners. A humerous side(When it is called for)Switched on attitude and an ability to coerce people to do what is the right thing from a security prospective for their/families/you or your teams safety. Always try to learn from all situations you become involved in. as this job is always throwing up new ways to F*8k you or your team up.
Try doing some DS/SG work. It involves the very ethos of CPO work. As you are dealing with all the variety of humankind in all situations that life will throw at you. A lot of guys and girls on here will do it to help pay the bills. There is no shame in it. You may be at the start of a very steep learning curve. But as starts go i reckon it is one of the best.:D
Also networking/ WOM(Word of mouth) will open more doors than a thousand CV,s. Learn about your possible employer/s. Even asking /visiting for a personal face to face would be a plus in my book. Work is very often infrequent and having a skill to fall back on is always a sensible option. Thats why i stil do all round building work. Whatever pays the bills till things pick up.;)

3) Training.
Invest your time /money/effort in training to whatever portion of CP work you eventually come to enjoy/find a natural bent for.I can find no better job than one you have a natural joy and affinity with. PLUS....your getting paid to do it as well.A Win ...win situation.:)
From personal fitness/self defence (A must in my eyes) to first aid and a myriad of opportunities in between. These all improve your skill/mindset and will make you a more employable operative .Your status to the companies that employ us will revolve around what you/we bring to the table for them to use. That will help them keep/gain future work/contracts.As a positive feedback is what can be the difference between losing /gaining work. That and as always the bean counters/price scenario!!:(
Never be afraid to ask a question. In life or on here. If you feel it is relevant and you need a genuine answer. THIS is the place to ask it. Yep, we dont take kindly to idiots or walts/Journos,Cv harvesters and F**in Walts,Did i mention F*8in Walts . Oh Yeah i did...:D Anyway there are some really switched on guys and girls here, who WILL go out of their way to help a genuine asker of the truth/advice etc.:)

Hope this helps you and any others reading this as i know it rambles on!:eek:
But i had to write something to take my mind off this kin hangover..Hic!

Happy New Year all. For those who disagree with anything i,ve wrote:p As they are my views and probably wrong in so many areas....But Heh Ho:D

PS: You will meet every walt/exSF known to man in this type of work.Listen to your gut instincts on meeting people in this field. I find the ones who just shut up and get on with the job to be a better choice to instill a bit of faith in.Also try to follow the workings of someone you know has the genuine respect of those around him, not fear of him. Much more effective than listening to the balcony/Nimrod connected, J. Bonds types. Thats why newbies get thrown in at the deep end first...........So we can see if they can bloody well swim..:cool:

Stay safe .
Max out.
Last edited:


New Member
Fantastic post. I feel it was a very detailed, and perfectly descriptive introduction to any person wishing to enter the field of CP, and/or affiliate occupations. I look very much forward to navigating the remainder of the site. As an ex-infantryman, I am keen to approach this with the utmost of enthusiasm, preparation, and professionalism. Your post is certainly in line with that. Many thanks, and keep up the good work. PR6299.


New Member
Hey Nomad,
Thank you very much for these information as i find it really useful and impotent.Well i think you have answered each and every question that i wanted to know and gave me an insight about the reality of the CP work.

Great Work


Full Registered User
Nomad - excellent bit of information very much to the point and easy to digest! It doesn't exactly fill me full of hope with regard to future employment but at least I am going in with my eyes open! I've completed my basic courses CP course & a Surveillance course - I feel I have the right background - 10yrs Reg Army - 6yrs TA INF -26 years HMG Int Services - just retired from aforementioned - but as yet not a sniff!? - But now I know it's not just me that's finding it hard I feel better??? (strange I know). Anyway many thanks for the eye opener - cheers!


Full Registered User
hi hi i have only been i the cp world about a year not been working in the field because of the sia but anyway little advice if you go to the sia web site they have a list of companys that they recammend thats where i found the campony that i trained with but just ask as many questions as you can. i went wrong about 3 years earlier and the campony was not there when i came to start my course. good luck guys. and thanks nomad good info thee and i will follow the advice
thanks agaain rikki


Full Registered User
Great Guide !! Im currently serving and new to the sit, due out May 2011. Iv been looking at this type of work for a couple of years and have some good mates currently working in the business just wish id made the jump back then before the gold rush. Looking at CP courses currently but I know they change around quite a bit, When I was last looking I thought Ronin SA or Phoenix Hereford.. noticed Phoenix is long gone and was wondering if anyone knew of the better courses to get on at this time ??
Again.. Nice Guide,
Not open for further replies.