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Code of Practice for security searches published by BSIA


The British Security Industry Association (BSIA), the trade body which represents the private security industry in the UK, has recently published a new Code of Practice to help companies carry out safe and legal security searches. 

Aimed at being used on a voluntary rather than compulsory basis, the Code is intended to help businesses with the development of their own security procedures and specifically guidelines relating to 'frequent' searches. including. as an example, searching persons and property, locating dangerous or prohibited items or preventing entry into restricted areas.

It applies also to companies which offer search services to customers, or to businesses that employ ‘in-house’ searchers directly.

The Police and Public Services Section of the BSIA, which incorporates member companies dedicated to providing support and back-office functions to police and public sector organisations across the UK, developed the Code.

The Code of Practice was presented at a seminar at security show, IFSEC International, in June, by the Chairman of the Police and Public Services Section, Dirk Wilson of Sector Security Services Ltd. Commenting on the launch of the Code, he said: “The idea behind having a standard to reduce risk to personnel who search, and to ensure those who search have a real idea that the task is being carried out well and under a set of guidelines both promotes professionalism and confidence. This code is a positive step forward and it is hoped that with further refinement it will be one of the most used standards within the industry which has a direct impact on safety and confidence for us all.”

Paul Phillips, Technical Manager, Paul Phillips, Technical Manager at the BSIA, added: “This Code of Practice will prove invaluable to all individuals and companies responsible for the execution of searches. A major consideration of the publication was to make sure that the searcher and their company avoid situations that could potentially compromise the integrity of their search, while ensuring that respect for the person being searched is maintained throughout. Of course, every search is different, although following the advice in the Code will help to ensure that the search methods used are proportionate to each situation.”

The BSIA’s Code of Practice for Security Searches can be downloaded by clicking here.


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