The Security Guard
Arguably the Worlds Oldest Profession
Security guards, while not as appealing, have been around long before the other “oldest profession.” When Cain went into the land of Nod and started to begat, you can be assured it wasn’t long before they started posting human security guards. After food and shelter, the security guard became a first priority and the job description has not changed; deterring unwanted activity by the incontestable “observe and report” method. While man has built walls, moats, guard towers, and more recently video, alarms, etc, the security guard still remains by far the most effective in preventing crime. By discouraging criminals, identifying threats and alerting others, the security guard presents a formidable risk to the success of any criminal activity. Cameras can record crimes, but have little value in identifying or capturing criminals. Alarms may alert others but are plagued with false alarms, seldom responded to by law enforcement, and few criminals consider them a significant risk. Fences and locks can easily be breached by serious criminals. Guard dogs, although quite formidable, are easily neutralized. Citing the cost of security guards, the security industry, as in the past, is eager to convince us that new technologies are a suitable replacement. While new technologies can be very effective, the replacement value is a false premise. What the “evil doers” fear most is an as-it-happens witness. A security guard whose only job is to observe his surroundings, along with the human capability to make judgments as events dictate and assign unpredictability to the equation, is the criminal’s worst nightmare. The presence of an alert security guard almost always convinces the criminal to seek out an easier target.