To be a successful security guard in California requires intense and ongoing course training. Because of this security guard training, when serious and possibly life-threatening situations arise, guards will know how to respond appropriately.

How To Start Security Guard Training. Candidates who want to become a security guard in California must first pass an initial eight-hour program that discusses the legal and liability issues associated with security guards and basic security guard functions such as:

–the power to arrest

–escalation and de-escalation techniques in the use of force

–use of restraint techniques

–enforcing trespassing laws

–understanding the role of a security officer to prevent an incident

After completing a test on these subjects with a 100 percent score, passing background checks and having their fingerprints taken, applicants receive a license and can do basic security work with a security guard company. The next step is to complete a comprehensive 32-hour program that goes into detail on all types of security issues within six months of the initial 8-hour course. In California, guard licenses are issued by the Bureau of Security & Investigative Services (BSIS). An additional eight hours of continuing education must be completed annually.

Only BSIS-licensed security guards are eligible to work in California. Other state security guard licenses are not valid.

For information on licensing requirements in California, contact Access Control Security, go to or call 877-482-7324.