Overview of the UK S.I.A Private Investigators licence
In the Private Security Industry various sectors have already been licenced such as: Manned guards, Door supervisors, Close protection operatives, Public space surveillance (CCTV) operators and Security guards by the Security Industry Authority. The S.I.A is the organisation responsible for this regulation and reports to the Home Secretary.
The Security Industry Authority has a series of objectives which cover these professions and the Private Investigator sector, such as: "Providing services and standards to their customers", "Delivering regulatory activities effectively and efficiently", "Delivering a development programme that continues effective regulation of the private security industry" and "To be recognised internally and externally as a model of good practice".
As Licensing for Private Investigators is a government priority in the UK. The following indices can be drawn from existing literature:
Although Private Investigator licences and the requirement for a business licence are still subject to Ministerial approval, the momentum is there and a whole new world of regulation, inspection and bureaucracy is coming.
The Security Industry Authority, tasked with the compulsory licensing of individuals undertaking designated activities, already has a voluntary Approved Contractor Scheme and will, subject to review, mandate Private Investigators to obtain ACS (Approved Contractor Scheme), status - involving eligibility checks, an assessement conducted by an external body and annual registration fees.
To get the S.I.A Private Investigator business licence you need to meet stringent professional standards - pass the, "Fit and Proper person" tests.
Please note that the Draft British Standard for the Provision of Investigative Services recommends that the competence necessary to complete an investigation is demonstrated by the supplier of the services: Conducting investigations, conducting interviews, searching for information and preserving evidence, surveillance techniques, understanding and working to relevant laws and standards and the ability to report findings…the syllabus of the Level three Awards....The SIA have only ever recognised or endorsed, as a, "Test of Competency", the following Awards: IQ Level 3 Award for Professional Investigators or the BTEC Professional Investigators, cost around: £300.00 - £600.00.
The rush amongst Investigation companies to gain as much kudos and credibility as possible by attaing, "Voluntary”, Kite marks, such as: British Standard 102000, has meant that "Self regulation", is, now, the order of the day. The organisations and businesses that wish to bid for government contracts have already enroled on the Approved Contractor Scheme (ACS).
In order to apply for a licence you must have the right to work in the UK but you do not have to be a British Citizen.
With your licence you can begin your journey as an investigator, but, only experience, continual training and luck will ensure you make a successful profitable, career in the sector.
Tel: 0800 279 7752
Study the Association of British Investigators endorsed IQ Award for Professional Investigators
We are available throughout your investigation career - offering further learning, training and real work opportunities. Look at our process server and other training options to expand your skill set. We support and assist.
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