Tag Archives: Licensing

Ward Security attains best-ever SIA Approved Contractor Scheme audit score

Ward Security has just achieved its best ever score (170 out of 174) in an independent audit conducted on behalf of the Security Industry Authority (SIA) – the Regulator for the private security industry in the UK – for the Approved Contractor Score (ACS).

External assessing body Chamber Certification Assessment Service Ltd (CCAS) carried out a five-day combined annual assessment of Ward Security during February 2015 that included a reverification assessment for the ACS around Security Guarding, Door Supervision, CCTV and Key Holding as well as a surveillance audit for ISO 9001:2008 (Quality Management Systems) and a renewal/full audit for BS 18001:2007 (Health & Safety).

Auditors visited nine customer sites in the West, London and Manchester regions and conducted interviews with over 50 Ward Security employees in addition to eight customers.

In his report, Keith Leyland (ACS assessor at CCAS) stated: “The company’s approach to improvement is excellent. The assessor reviewed very many examples in all areas of customer services, fleet management, compliance, finance, Human Resources and operations where the company has applied the Plan-Do-Check-Act principle to developing improvement.”

David Ward: managing director at Ward Security

David Ward: managing director at Ward Security

Speaking about this achievement, Nikhil Kamboj (compliance director at Ward Security) stated: “We’ve enjoyed a 25% growth since last year, but Ward Security has now surpassed all expectations in producing its best-ever ACS score which comfortably puts us in the Top 1%-2% of the SIA’s regulated suppliers.”

David Ward, managing director of Ward Security, added “We’re both delighted and proud to have achieved this record ACS audit score. Managing growth while maintaining standards takes an extraordinary level of commitment and dedication from all members of staff, so our thanks must go to all management and staff right across the business.”

Ward continued: “This achievement shows that our systems are robust, effect and more than adequate to accommodate substantial business growth. It also illustrates to our customers that our growth has not compromised the level of service we deliver. Indeed, the quality of our service has improved as the company has grown.”

Ward Security operates a head office in London and a network of regional offices encompassing Rochester, Bracknell, Manchester and a newly opened-office in Scotland. Areas of specialist expertise include the provision of search and selection guard dogs, wireless intruder detection systems and concierge services through the new Ward Belgravia division.

Security provision for the Royal visit to Folkestone

Recently, Ward Security supplied a team of 16 operatives for a visit by Her Majesty The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh to Folkestone, where the Queen opened The Wing Visitor Centre at the National Memorial to the Few in Capel-le-Ferne, which is dedicated to pilots who engaged in the Battle of Britain.

“A Royal visit is always a particularly complex and sensitive operation,” explained David Ward. “This is made an even more complex security task when the visit includes more than one site and the party is on a tightly controlled deadline. It’s crucial that people have access to greet Her Majesty at each site, but security needs to be carefully and professionally managed in a way that’s not intrusive. Also, the Royal security team accompanying the party will need help in understanding the different sites and locations and potential threat angles, and this is further complicated if they have one eye on moving safely to the next locations. This complicates the logistics and planning, so additional security to that provided by the police and the security services has to be very efficient and effective in its operation in order to provide adequate support.”

One of Ward Security's mobile patrol vehicles

One of Ward Security’s mobile patrol vehicles

Ward continued: “With a regional office in Kent, Ward Security has the local knowledge to make the process easier for this particular visit. Crucially, we have the experience of working with the police and the security services, which makes liaison, planning and delivery far easier. As a company, we also have vast experience in providing security for a range of scenarios and operations, and our members of staff are highly experienced in delivering effective and sensitive security.”

In conclusion, Ward told Risk UK: “It has been a great honour to provide additional security for Her Majesty’s visit, and we’re extremely proud to have provided our services for this important and historic visit.”

After opening The Wing Visitor Centre, Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal party proceeded to Canterbury Cathedral where the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh unveiled statues to mark the occasion of the Diamond Jubilee.

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Chartered Security Professional status bestowed upon SIA CEO Bill Butler

The Security Institute has announced that Bill Butler – CEO of the Security Industry Authority (SIA), the Regulator for the private security business sector – is admitted to the Register of Chartered Security Professionals as of Tuesday 9 December following his interview with Garry Evanson CSyP and Bill Wyllie CSyP.

The Register of Chartered Security Professionals was created by The Security Institute on behalf of The Worshipful Company of Security Professionals back in 2011.

Applicants have to be making a strategic contribution to the development of security as a discipline and proceed through a rigorous staged assessment process. Candidates must prove they’ve reached a minimum competence level in each of five defined areas: security knowledge, practical skills, leadership, communications and professional commitment.

Once admitted, registrants are allowed to use the prestigious post-nominal CSyP after their name. They must then comply with a Code of Professional Conduct, hold Professional Indemnity insurance (either individually or via their employer) and complete Continuing Professional Development (CPD) tasks each year in order to retain the status of Chartered Security Professional.

Bill Butler CSyP: CEO at the Security Industry Authority

Bill Butler CSyP: CEO at the Security Industry Authority

The Register continues to grow with 30 professionals admitted this year alone. Typically, applicants are either employed by security service providers, are public sector employees, consultants or heads of security/senior security managers.

To date there have been applicants from the UK, Australia, the USA, Abu Dhabi, Tunisia, Dubai, the Czech Republic and Spain.

Chartered Security Professionals Registration Authority

The Chartered Security Professionals Registration Authority (CSPRA), which is chaired by The Security Institute’s President Lord Alex Carlile of Berriew CBE QC, is responsible for setting criteria and standards for Chartered Security Professionals.

This year, the CSPRA reviewed its competency requirements in order that key individuals working strategically for the development and benefit of the security profession would be eligible for acceptance onto the Register.

Commenting on the news, The Security Institute’s chairman Emma Shaw CSyP stated: “I’d like to offer my sincere congratulations to Bill Butler who now joins a very prestigious group of security professionals. The Register of Chartered Security Professionals represents ‘The Gold Standard’ in professionalism for the security industry. CSyPs demonstrate an ongoing commitment to demonstrable excellence in their work within the security business sector that sets them apart from other security practitioners.”

Shaw added: “When The Security Institute launched its ‘Manifesto for Professional Security’ in November, we stressed the importance of creating a broad awareness of security as a profession. The Register is a key component of this effort.”

Speaking about his acceptance to the Register of Chartered Security Professionals, SIA chief executive Bill Butler CSyP said: “I found the admission process to be both challenging and rewarding. I’m very pleased and proud to be admitted as a Chartered Security Professional. This reflects on my own and indeed the SIA’s commitment to the development of professional standards in the security industry.”

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Security director ordered to pay £95,000 under Proceeds of Crime Act

On Monday 15 December at Woolwich Crown Court, ex-security director Aston Shim was ordered to pay £94,758 under the Proceeds of Crime Act to be paid within six months. If the order is defaulted, the Court may impose a period of 18 months imprisonment.

Shim was the sole director of Samurai Security Limited (a business located at Macbean Street, Woolwich in London). The company provided security services to nine venues including a school and a local council. Neither Shim nor the majority of his security officers held Security Industry Authority (SIA) licences to work in the private security industry.

In November 2013, at a prosecution brought by the SIA, Shim pleaded guilty to being a director of a security company without an SIA licence and for supplying unlicensed security officers. The court disqualified Shim from working as a company director for five years, gave him a 120-hour Community Order and fined him £8,000.

The SIA worked in partnership with the London Regional Asset Recovery Team in securing a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act at Woolwich Crown court for £94,758.

The SIA's investigations continue to expose those who do not observe the law

The SIA’s investigations continue to expose those who do not observe the law

Comment from the Regulator

Nathan Salmon, head of investigation at the SIA, said: “The confiscation ordered against Mr Shim means the financial gain he made in supplying unlicensed security officers will be removed from him. This has resulted in a closure of Mr Shim’s business and property obtained from the proceeds of crime.”

Salmon continued: “In running his business of 20 years, Mr Shim made decisions not to comply with security industry regulations. Those regulations are in place to protect the public. Mr Shim would not have been able to service his contracts without unlicensed operatives. A ruling during these proceedings means the total value of each contract is recoverable as criminal benefit where unlicensed operatives were used.”

In conclusion, the SIA’s spokesperson added: “It’s important that the SIA pursues such matters. These prosecutions drive out poor industry practice, ensure criminals do not benefit from their crimes and that criminal funds are returned to the public purse. The SIA has worked in partnership with the London Regional Asset Recovery Team throughout the course of this investigation and we are grateful for their support.”

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Axis Security appoints Chris Wisely to new managing director’s role

Chris Wisely has been promoted from head of operations to the newly-created role of managing director at Axis Security (part of the Axis Group of security, reception management and cleaning and support services companies). Wisely will report to Group CEO Jonathan Levine.

Wisely has worked in the security industry for more than 20 years and joined Axis Security in 2009 as finance director before progressing to the head of operations role in 2012.

In the five years he has been with the business, Wisely has worked with the senior management team in further strengthening the company’s operations, including the launch of its bespoke online portal – Axis e-Connect – giving customers easy access to live reports, documentation and information about their portfolio.

Wisely has also overseen a significant investment in employee training and played a key role in creating specialist teams to manage recruitment, training, compliance, contract mobilisation and Health and Safety.

Chris Wisely: the new managing director at Axis Security

Chris Wisely: the new managing director at Axis Security

Jonathan Levine believes the appointment comes at an exciting time for the business, and reflects how far the company has come in such a comparatively short space of time.

“Axis Security has an enviable reputation in the industry,” said Levine. “With a record Approved Contractor Scheme audit, our track record is one that’s built firmly on quality. We will continue to focus on delivering the finest services to our customers while supporting our employees to be the best they can be in their respective roles.”

As managing director, a key focus for Wisely will be redefining the company’s vision and the business strategy required to deliver that vision. “We want to be viewed as the leading provider of security services in key sectors and geographies, so it’s important that we are known more widely,” urged Wisely.

“We also want to be known as the best employer in the industry and have made great strides in developing a comprehensive training programme for our officers and management staff, in turn allowing us to develop and retain the best people at all levels.”

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Security boss sentenced for deploying unlicensed security officers at luxury development

A security boss has been sentenced for providing unlicensed security officers to a prestigious housing development in Prestbury, Cheshire.

Gary Ford (42) of Westall Court, Buxton in Derbyshire pleaded guilty on 11 November to three security offences. On 17 November, Ford was sentenced at Macclesfield Magistrates Court to a 12-month community order and a requirement that he completes 300 hours of unpaid work.

Macclesfield Magistrates Court awarded the Security Industry Authority (SIA) £10,000 in costs to be paid in instalments of £100 per week.

In May 2013, SIA investigators visited the site of two discreet luxury houses in Prestbury, where Ford’s company (4D Security) provided private security. SIA investigators found an unlicensed security officer on site who had been deployed by Ford.

SIA investigators again visited the site on 24 November 2013 and found a different unlicensed security officer working on the premises. The man was not licensed to conduct security guarding activities, although he did hold an SIA CCTV licence.

By law, security operatives working under contract and all door supervisors must hold and display a valid SIA licence card

By law, security operatives working under contract and all door supervisors must hold and display a valid SIA licence card

Following the visits to Prestbury, the SIA made requests to 4D Security for information under Section 19 of the Private Security Industry Act 2001. Ford failed to respond.

Nathan Salmon, investigations manager at the Regulator, stated: “This is a positive result for the SIA, demonstrating that both unlicensed and incorrectly licensed security operatives cannot be ‘hidden’ at smaller, discreet security sites. Mr Ford’s business model paid scant regard to security regulations. The SIA twice found his operatives unlicensed in the role being undertaken.”

Salmon added: “The owners of the houses in Prestbury paid Ford to provide private security. They should have been safe in the knowledge that the individuals guarding their property were trained, qualified and held the appropriate SIA licences. Macclesfield Magistrates Court considered the expense in bringing this prosecution, which is borne by correctly licensed operatives, and this has been reflected in the costs awarded to the SIA.”

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SSAIB recruits manned services assessors ahead of business licensing

Inspection company the SSAIB – which is celebrating its 20th Anniversary as a fire, security and telecare certification body – has recruited two new manned services assessors to join the team headed by scheme manager Stephen Grieve.

The duo’s appointments come in the context of future regulation through mandatory business licensing – the most significant factor affecting the security industry since the SIA (Security Industry Authority) introduced individual licensing under the Private Security Industry Act 2001.

Andrew Osbourne

Andrew Osbourne

Andrew Osborne joins the SSAIB to cover the south of England. He brings with him an extensive and wide-ranging 40-year track record of business experience including security screening and training, Health and Safety management and risk assessments with companies such as G4S (with whom, for example, he conducted site and remote audits on static guarding, maritime, aviation, rail and events operations including employee screening, training and licensing).

Osbourne’s appointment to the team is mirrored by David Taylor’s recruitment to cover the Midlands and the north of England. Taylor has a similarly impressive industry CV dating back over 20 years and including roles as an operations, training and quality and security manager for Sigma Security. He also served as a project manager for Wilson James covering British Airways’ Heathrow headquarters, as well as being manager of security and safety services for both the Portman and Coventry Building Societies.

David Taylor

David Taylor

“Bringing on board professionals of Andrew and David’s calibre is a significant step for SSAIB as we invest in our regional manned services assessment capability in the run-up to the anticipated 2015 introduction of business licensing,” commented Stephen Grieve, “with all of the important implications involved in that process. This move also demonstrates the SSAIB’s credentials within the market as we operate for the benefit of licensing and certification customers around the UK and Ireland.”

Founded in 1994 and based in Tyne & Wear, the SSAIB also offers a range of management systems certification schemes, including ISO 9001 quality management systems certification and ISO 14001 environmental management systems certification.

Over 1,500 companies are now included on the SSAIB’s register.

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Showsec helps put Leeds’ First Direct Arena on the venue map

Event and venue security specialist Showsec has been acclaimed for its part in helping to establish the First Direct Arena in Leeds as a friendly, customer-focused venue.

The 13,000-capacity First Direct Arena recently celebrated its first birthday when Jake Bugg performed his unique blend of indie rock and folk to a capacity crowd. It was a special occasion which also marked a celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the venue’s sponsor, the Leeds-based bank First Direct.

From the outset, Showsec was contracted by SMG Europe to provide its specialist services for the First Direct Arena and has undoubtedly made an important contribution to many memorable events (among them the hosting of the BBC’s annual Sports Personality of the Year Awards ceremony).

First Direct Arena general manager Ben Williams commented: “During the launch year of the First Direct Arena, SMG has relied upon the scale, expertise and professionalism delivered by Showsec. As a company, Showsec has not only embraced but also pro-actively committed to the venue’s vision for putting the customer at the heart of everything we do. The First Direct Arena has quickly established a reputation for being a friendly, customer-focused environment for event-goers and Showsec has contributed significantly towards that achievement.”

The First Direct Arena in Leeds

The First Direct Arena in Leeds

Williams added: “We look forward to working closely with Showsec and continuing to improve our service provision for customers and artists over the coming years.”

International artists in the spotlight

As well as the anniversary event featuring Jake Bugg, the First Direct Arena has played host to many other international artists including Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Prince, Kasabian, Michael Buble, Miley Cyrus, Ed Sheeran and The Kaiser Chiefs.

For its part, Showsec has worked closely with SMG Europe and the Arena’s management team to provide a customer-focused service. With Sam Hodkin now operating as the Arena’s head of security, Showsec has developed a strong team of experienced supervisors, Security Industry Authority-licensed professionals and stewards to help the venue enhance its reputation for top class entertainment.

“The emphasis has been on ensuring that the experience for all visitors to the First Direct Arena is the very best it can be,” explained Julian Kumah, Showsec’s area manager for Yorkshire. “The fact that we’ve been able to deliver that level of service is due to the tremendous commitment and professionalism of our staff. We have received some very positive feedback from customers and clients which spurs us on to raise the bar even higher.”

Kumah added: “The development of our service at the First Direct Arena has involved us in being innovative in order to create the best possible operational systems in line with the design of the venue and to use the latest technology. This affords our staff the confidence and ability to fulfil their roles. The upshot of that is a customer-focused approach.”

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Security boss jailed for failing to pay £80,000 penalty under Proceeds of Crime Act

On Thursday 2 October 2014 at Bridgend Magistrates’ Court, an ex-security director was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment for failing to pay £80,000 under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

In October 2013, 52-year old Dean Campisi was convicted at Cardiff Crown Court after falsely claiming that his company, Secure Serve Facilities Management Services Ltd (Secure Serve), was part of the Security Industry Authority’s (SIA) Approved Contractor Scheme.

Campisi used fake documentation to pass Secure Serve off as an Approved Contractor. He secured and maintained security contacts with the Lidl supermarket chain worth £15,000 per week, but Lidl cancelled the contract with Secure Serve after making enquiries that revealed Secure Serve was not ACS accredited.

The SIA successfully prosecuted Campisi, and then made an application under the Proceeds of Crime Act to recover the ill-gotten funds from him. The SIA identified money received by Campisi from the Lidl contract.

A Proceeds of Crime Act confiscation order was passed ordering Campisi to pay £80,000 within six months. Any failure to pay would lead to a custodial sentence for 18 months.

A security boss has been jailed for failing to pay an £80,000 fine under the Proceeds of Crime Act

A security boss has been jailed for failing to pay an £80,000 fine under the Proceeds of Crime Act

Following last Thursday’s short hearing at Bridgend Magistrates’ Court, it emerged that Campisi failed to pay the £80,000 and he was immediately taken into custody.

The SIA’s head of investigation, Nathan Salmon, commented: “The SIA will protect the integrity of the Approved Contractor Scheme and its members. The ACS offers a ‘hallmark’ of quality to buyers of security, and it’s a mark that’s both respected and trusted. It was important that Mr Campisi was pursued under Proceeds of Crime legislation to recover the benefit he gleaned from his actions. Failure to pay has now landed Campisi in prison.”

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Security Industry Authority announces detail of 2014 Stakeholder Conference

The Security Industry Authority (SIA) will be holding its annual Stakeholder Conference on Thursday 16 October at the Cavendish Conference Centre, Duchess Mews in London.

The agenda will include a keynote address from the regulator’s chair Elizabeth France CBE as well as presentations covering how to improve your business model, buying private security: a client’s view, private security: a French perspective and tackling cyber crime (the latter delivered by the National Crime Agency).

There will also be presentations about the security challenges at the Commonwealth Games and SIA updates on regulation and the Approved Contractor Scheme. The SIA’s CEO Bill Butler will close the conference.

Bill Butler: CEO at the SIA

Bill Butler: CEO at the SIA

The delegate fee is £99 which includes VAT, registration, lunch and refreshments. This fee has been set at a cost recovery basis only.

Places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. No bookings will be taken after 9 October. Please note that the fee cannot be refunded once your booking has been confirmed.

There is a 10% discount available for all valid SIA licence holders.

The SIA will be offering ten free places to followers on Facebook and Twitter.

Up to and during the event the SIA be using the Twitter hashtag #SIAConf14

To book your place visit: https://www.regonline.co.uk/Register/Checkin.aspx?EventID=1610889

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Regulation of Private Investigations: Latest Update from the SIA

On 31 July 2013, the Home Secretary announced the Government’s intention for the Security Industry Authority (SIA) to regulate private investigation activities. On 30 June 2014, Home Office Minister Lord Taylor set out the Government’s position on the regulation of private investigations.

In answer to questions asked in the House of Lords, Lord Taylor of Holbeach said that the Government expects the regulations to license the activity of private investigations to come into force in 2015.

The Government also expects the introduction of licensing of private security businesses to come into force in 2015, followed thereafter by private investigation businesses.

On 30 June, Home Office Minister Lord Taylor set out the Government's position on the regulation of private investigations

On 30 June, Home Office Minister Lord Taylor set out the Government’s position on the regulation of private investigations

The Security Industry Authority (SIA) will continue to work with the Home Office, which has responsibility for introducing the regulation of the private investigation sector.

In advance of the regulation date, the SIA will engage with the security industry to update the ‘Get Licensed’ criteria, and will continue to publicise widely further information about the proposed regulation of private investigations.

Who will need a licence?

The Private Security Industry Act 2001 defines the licensable activities of private investigations. The Home Office intends to review this definition to ensure that it remains fit for purpose.

Questions relating to whether specific activities will be licensable in future should be directed to the Home Office.

According to the Act, a given individual will need an SIA licence if they’re involved in any surveillance, inquiries or investigations that are carried out for the purposes of:

(1) Obtaining information about a particular person or about the activities or whereabouts of a particular person, or…

(2) Obtaining information about the circumstances in which, or means by which, property has been lost or damaged

Anyone involved in providing contracted private investigation services will require a licence. This includes employees, employers, managers, supervisors and directors* or partners of private investigation companies. It’s unclear if the Home Office will also wish the SIA to regulate ‘in-house’ private investigations.

*For the purposes of the Private Security Industry Act 2001, the term ‘director’ means executive and non-executive directors, shadow directors, parent company directors and corporate entities holding a directorship

Activities not requiring a licence

According to the Act, the following activities will not require a licence:

*Activities exclusively for the purposes of market research
*Activities exclusively concerned with a credit check
*Professional activities of practising solicitors and Barristers
*Professional activities of practising accountants
*Professional activities of journalists and broadcasters, and activities exclusively relating to obtaining information for journalists and broadcasters
*Activities exclusively relating to reference to registers which are open to the public, registers or records to which a person has a right of access and published works
*Activities carried out with the knowledge or consent of the subject of the investigation

Penalties administered for non-compliance

The penalty for working as an unlicensed private investigator will be (upon summary conviction at a Magistrate’s Court, Sheriff Court or District Court) a maximum of six months imprisonment and/or a fine of up to £5,000.

The penalty for supplying unlicensed staff will be (upon summary conviction at a Magistrate’s Court, Sheriff Court or District Court) a maximum of six months imprisonment and/or a fine of up to £5,000.

Upon conviction on indictment at Crown Court, High Court of Justiciary or Sheriff and jury trial, the penalty will be an unlimited fine and/or up to five years imprisonment.

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