Could You Pass a Security Guard Licensing Exam?


By Robert Ing, DSc, FAPSc, FInstMP(UK), CPO

Yes, in most places you really do need to take an exam to be a Security Guard. Throughout Canada and the United States, Provinces and States are requiring those who wish to work as a Security Guard to take a course and pass a licensing examination before being permitted to work as a Security Guard.

While the specific curriculum varies from each jurisdiction, as do laws and the emphasis placed on some subject areas, common curriculum requirements are basic safety and security procedures.

The purpose of this article is to offer a short quiz on these basic areas to see if you could pass these elements in a Security Guard licensing exam.

Of course, in order to fully pass the exam offered by your Provincial or State authority you will need to know much more than the correct answers in this short quiz, but by taking this quiz you will have an idea with regard to the feel of such an exam and your general knowledge as it applies to being a professional Security Guard.

I based this quiz on common questions used in most licensing exams.

Give it a go and see how well you do.


Step 1:
Check your answers

Step 2:
Multiply your score by four (4) to obtain your overall score and percentage.

Step 3:
Find your percentage below.

0 to 31: Don’t give up your day job!

32 to 61: Cadet – With about 2 to 4 weeks of study you could be all decked out in a Security Guard uniform.

62 to 81: Watchman or is that Watchperson? – You are field ready to hit the mean back “off limits” corridors of the mall or to observe and report what really goes on in the toy factory after hours.

82 to 100: Guardian – You are more than a mere Security Guard but a Security Supervisor with a staff ready to be your eyes and ears everywhere.

On a serious note, this article and quiz is based on professional guard exams and a small sampling of what a Security Guard needs to know. Security Guards provide a valuable service in the community and despite being paid wages much lower than the amount of responsibility placed upon them, they provide a deterrent to crimes of opportunity, conduct fire and safety patrols, and help free up police resources.

this article is provided in the hope to dispel the common belief that Security Guards do not need to, nor have any job specific training or skills. Security Guards must know the law; security, health and safety procedures; customer service; first aid; fire prevention and basic electronic security systems.

More information on Security Guard certification curriculum may be obtained from the
International Foundation for Protection Officers (IFPO) at

About The Author:
Dr. Robert Ing is a forensic scientist, magician of the mind, broadcaster and author. An internationally acclaimed forensic scientist, he has traveled the world on behalf of the interests of governments and major corporations. Dr.
Ing has appeared on major North American broadcast news networks and is a syndicated author in both print and electronic media.

For further information visit


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