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Why consider employing a Residential Security Team?

A Residential Security Team (RST) is, more often than not, employed to provide reassurance that the technical security systems are monitored and managed on site. Whilst most home owners are content to outsource their alarm and CCTV monitoring to a receiving centre, some prefer the physical presence of a security professional inside their residence.

The benefits of a residential security team are not always obvious without consideration. An RST is not the budget option, but when balanced against the safety of your family or the potential theft of high value or irreplaceable assets such as fine art, prestige cars or jewellery, it may be the most prudent choice. It’s certainly valued by your insurance underwriter!

Residential security is one of the roles allocated to the Close Protection Officer. There is nowhere that a Principal is more predictable than when they are relaxed or sleeping at home. The role of securing the residence is essential but can present a myriad of complex considerations and vulnerabilities, especially if the security infrastructure is not comprehensive. If the technical security measures are outstanding but no one is monitoring it or understands how it works, it is still deemed ineffective.

A residential security team can mean one security officer or several. It really depends on the scale of the home and the grounds and how vulnerable the residents feel. Many homes have complex listed building restrictions that limit the implementation of strong security windows or doors. In such cases, a security presence in the home provides a comfort blanket to the family in residence.

The roles that you can delegate to your security team are vast and many may be a surprise to you. The following roles include real examples of the obvious and the less so, that have been deemed vital to the home owner.

CCTV monitoring and alarm response are clearly the expected function of an RST. Having a human identify what triggered an alarm and assessing whether it is a real threat or not, will be no surprise to anyone. But often, the alarm is false and the lights and sirens are blaring irrespective; someone needs to reset the alarm, do you know the code? What if it’s the fire alarm panel that has activated, do you know what actions should be carried out to ensure that there is not a fire in the house? If your residence is vast, where do you start? If you have been sleeping, the disorientation caused by an alarm can be terrifying! A residential security team maintains a waking presence 24/7 and will have all of that taken care of before you emerge in your dressing gown.

When there is a real trespasser in the grounds, the RST will have identified them at the earliest opportunity and alerted the Police within minutes. This results in the apprehension of a suspect before they even have chance to attempt to break into the residence. The team will concurrently secure the family in a safe area whilst monitoring the progress of the intruder and if required, obstruct or apprehend them.

In a large residence, routine operation requires the control of access for guests, deliveries and contractors. This can be a full-time role in itself, let alone the receipt of mail and parcels as well as logging in/out of the household staff. A residence could have in excess of 20 people on site at any time, all of whom should be accounted for in an emergency. A proactive and professional security team will manage these concerns and identify risks in real time.

The alternative is the housekeeper or chef letting people in and out of the kitchen door which is a serious vulnerability. The integrity of the security seal to the home is paramount.

The Residential Security Team can often be the only people entering and leaving the home for protracted periods whilst the owners are on vacation or travelling with business and so, the routine tasks can fall to them for maintenance. Watering plants, feeding fish and looking after the dog are gladly assumed by the team. Their routine will involve patrolling the residence, not simply for security, but to identify issues such as water leaks that can damage art or simply being visible to deter criminals.

Residences are not always large estates. It could be a serviced apartment complex or a roof top apartment, whether the security team is a night watchman or a full Close protection team, the residence is a home. Your home is your castle and the people and possessions inside deserve appropriate protection.

If you wish to discuss your residential security with a Chartered Security Professional, call Rick Mounfield on 0207471 6000 or email [email protected]

February 28, 2017

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