A residential security team (RST) is just what it sounds. It comprises a group of protection operatives who secure the home of the wealthy, famous, and those at risk.
But it is not like a crowd of individuals merely standing around, waiting for something to happen. In fact, a residential security team creates a sense of calm and reassurance in the principal, their family, and entourage by conducting preventive actions.
Many high-level individuals and families tend to spend their leisure time in far-off estates. But for RST this is not about relaxation per se because a team of this sort also safeguards any type of inhabitable private property. That includes even smaller residencies and homes that may be close to the HNW individual’s corporate building or office.
In any case, there have been many attempts to penetrate private gated estates of famous people over the years. Although this is an enormously important subject, some principals take securing their homes for granted.
Nevertheless, a residential security team onsite provides the following benefits to the client and their immediate surroundings:
- Securing doors and windows,
- Gate control and security,
- Trained security guards or close protection operatives,
- Threat and risk assessment in place,
- Various forms of patrols, including patrol cars, on foot, by bicycle,
- AI-powered CCTV cameras and other high-quality equipment, and
- Background checks of the estate staff, such as butlers, assistants, cooks, chauffeurs, etc.
The last point is critical, as at least a dozen staff members may be mingling there throughout the executive’s stay.
However, for some principals, all of this can sound excessive. But for most for whom budget is not an issue, this range of services is probably what they need.
Regardless of the intricate details of security provision, protective agents need to adapt to the lifestyle of the principal, their family, and guest. So, let us explore what that entails exactly.
Searching and Equipping the Property
When HNW families decide to hire a residential security team, they expect them to secure the premises. The first step in this process is to conduct a threat and vulnerability assessment (TVRA) and an advance.
An advance entails visiting and assessing the estate. But also identifying its weak spots and how bad actors could use them to their advantage. As a matter of fact, the close protection officer must also establish the safest routes to and from the gated property and collect related details.
Briefly put, such an assessment could entail:
- Addresses of the nearest health facilities in case of medical emergencies,
- Information on nearby intersections, road infrastructure, street lighting, etc.,
- Identifying helicopter landing zones (HLZ) on the property, and
- Finding, upgrading or recommending alarm and CCTV systems.
That is by no means an exhaustive list. Nevertheless, it is indicative of how a proficient team approaches the matter. After conducting an advance, the protection agents seek to reduce the vulnerabilities and establish safeguards for maximum security.
Related actions may mean setting up CCTV cameras, addressing easily penetrable points, or installing a security operations centre.
Note: A Security Operations Centre (SOC) is a centralised function within an organisation. It employs people, technology, and processes to regularly monitor and improve an organisation’s security posture. For example, an SOC is equipped to handle access control but also manages lighting, alarms, and vehicle barriers. A similar but lower-level SOC is often called a control room or Command Post (CP).
A rule of thumb when hiring a residential security team is to find a company with extensive experience in the field. For instance, employing a unit of protection professionals well-versed in emergency provision, advance medical training, and access control is far more perceptive than hiring people with a great website but little to no experience.
Balancing Between Privacy and Security
An age-old dilemma in executive protection refers to how to balance the privacy afforded to the principal with the security enforced by the protective detail. This becomes increasingly complicated with CCTV cameras and AI-powered equipment around the residence of the high-net-worth family.
On that note, one must consider features such as:
- Static masking
- Dynamic masking
- Face recognition
- Camera positioning
Static masking allows a camera or video management software to pixelate or blank out defined areas within the camera’s range. In addition, it lets the user mask areas outside the designated property, such as a private residence.
Dynamic masking focuses on fixed locations and applies pixelation to objects entering and leaving the scene. This feature allows the user — i.e., the security team — to identify licence plates and obscure faces.
Ultimately, facial recognition flags identified and unidentified facial shapes to check for security breaches.
Positioning cameras to face out from personal zones should be considered and discussed with the principals.
Therefore, protective agents must assuage concerns related to privacy and security. In other words, they need to convince the principal that protection does not imply infringing upon their or the privacy of their guests.
Reasonable Security Measures
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 919,500 households experienced one or more selected household crimes during the 2020-2021 reference period. These included:
- Break-ins and attempted break-ins,
- Malicious property damage, and
High-level individuals and families are by no means exempt from these crime statistics. In fact, bad actors target them frequently due to the expected gains.
To combat these events, proficient security teams introduce reasonable levels of protection, including CCTV coverage and physical barriers. But also always have in mind their protectees’ level of comfort.
For instance, they consider how to position the cameras so as not to be intrusive toward the protectees’ daily activities.
This article explored how residential security teams help high-ranking individuals take control of their safety. And it is more complex than one might expect.
To address the security concerns of the principal and their entourage, protective agents usually prepare for worst-case scenarios.
To sum up, here is a list of items to consider before hiring a residential security team for a gated property, estate, or rural home:
- Does the security company have extensive experience and skills in handling the latest gear and technology?
- What is their background in working in more volatile settings?
- How do they go about striking a balance between privacy and security?
- Does the protection firm come with recommendations from other business executives or HNW individuals?
Companies like Panoptic Solutions support individuals and organisations in enhancing productivity and peace of mind by offering unmatched residential security services.