How to get an SIA Licence

Oct 30th 2012 22 Comments 5549 Views

The private security industry in the UK is under the oversight of the SIA, or Security Industry Authority. This department is responsible for regulation and training of people interested in making a career in private security. The department was created in 2003.


The main duties of the SIA are twofold:

1.  1.     Licencing of people entering private security

2.  2.     Management of the Approved Contractor Scheme


There are several different sectors in which you can get licenced in private security. They include:

  • Close Protection
  • Public Space Surveillance
  • Vehicle Immobilisation
  • Cash and Valuables in Transit
  • Door Supervision
  • Security Guarding
  • Key Holding

The two types of licenses available are the Front Line Licence and the Non-Front Line Licence. 

  • Front line licences are necessary if you yourself will be participating in an activity that requires licensing. Key holding activities are excluded from this. The front line licence is similar to an ID card that you must wear.
  • Non-front line licence is necessary if you will be supervising licenced security personnel. You may not participate in the licensed activity yourself, but you may supervise those who do. This licence is a letter that outlines your duties and responsibilities.

The application fees for each are £220. This will get you a three-year licence. If you elect to get more than one licence, you can get a 50% discount on the secondary licences. 


The SIA works with the UK Border Agency to verify the right to work for all applicants of SIA licences. However, employers are responsible for determining the right to work of their own employees. SIA will not be held responsible for employers who hire workers who don’t have the right to work in the UK.


A number of independently recognised standards have been established against which private security contractors are measured. If you or your organisation pass these standards, you receive an “Approved Contractor” status. The Approved Contractor Scheme, or ACS, is widely regarded as the ultimate in standards for the private security industry.

You have to be re-approved every 3 years, but you must register with the SIA every year. Each time you reregister, you must be independently assessed. Your ACS fees may be paid either before or after you apply for approval. Each year that you receive approval, you must pay the fee. The amount of your fee depends on the size of your organization. 

  • Micro-sized organisations of 10 or less pay £400
  • Small-sized organisations of 11 to 25 pay £800
  • Medium –sized organisations of 26 to 250 pay £1,600
  • Large-sized companies of over 250 pay £2,400

Those are the application fees, which are paid once. After that, the annual registration fee is 15 pounds per person.


There are many different types of training programs, which you can enrol on in preparation for your SIA licence application, however it is best to check your requirements in full before choosing a training course. For more information on requirements then you can use the Home Office Step by Step guide which will display all the necessary documentation and qualifications needed.

For example if you are looking to work in Door Security then it is essential you pass a recognised Door Supervision course which will cover the main 4 modules required for a licence.

Alternatively if you are seeking work in the Close Protection sector then you are required to have upwards of 138 hours of CP training, including passing two training modules and an exam.

For a full range of certified training courses in all areas of security then see what is currently available in our Training Courses category or see our SIA Security training courses and get your license today.


sharon on 01/09/2013 at 11:06pm said:

hi i passed my security guard training in 2010 but never got the money together to send off for my sia licence will i have to take another course or am istill ok to use my paperwork that i have

Cross-Deck on 02/09/2013 at 10:17am said:

It would be worth asking the SIA this question as they are the people who would supply your license. The training provider would have needed to be an approved training provider for the course to count. Many courses change for example, if you completed the Door Supervisors course before June 2010 you now need to complete an Upskilling course before renewing your badge. You can contact the SIA on 0844 892 1025 or visit their website

sumit k paul on 31/08/2013 at 07:22am said:

I m middle aged man ..stay in india non graduate good knowledge of computer can i get any kind of good job in uk.

Cross-Deck on 02/09/2013 at 10:07am said:

We certainly couldn't say whether you could be employed in the UK, it would be up to the employer and the qualifications you hold. Cross-Deck has training providers worldwide who would be able to offer you advice in which way you would like to develop your career.

Quadri Ishola Muyideen on 01/04/2013 at 10:10pm said:

Am a security guard here in Nigeria and I will like to work as a security guard in uk so how can I do it and how can get SIA Licence.

Cross-Deck on 02/04/2013 at 10:57am said:

Please read through the below replies as there is a lot more information there that will help you.

Peter Anyaorah on 21/11/2012 at 05:42am said:

Am looking at attending a Close Protection training in UK by February 2013. i have been told that a lot happen when it comes to CP training in UK. Please i need advice on which company is best when it comes to CP training in UK, and also i would want to know if i would be qualified for SIA licence after the training. Am communicating from Nigeria, at the momnet i don;t have working permit but only have entry visa to UK. Will SIA licence be issued to a non residence UK citizen? Thank you.

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 02:22pm said:

You will need to attend a Close Protection course which needs to be accredited by either; HABC, Buckinghamshire New University, City & Guilds, Edexcel or IQ. This will ensure as long as your application to the SIA is successful you will receive your licence. It would be very beneficial to yourself to join Cross-Deck as a member at here you will be able to view any Close Protection courses that are running in February. If you need any further help then please do get in tou

Gary Senior on 21/11/2012 at 09:23am said:

I'm an ex royal marine who is now Cp trained but cant get Sia licence which is stopping me fulfilling my potential. Is there water around it?? I have even thought about maritime too but every company wants Sia. Thanks, regards Gary

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 02:07pm said:

To work within the Maritime Industry it is not necessary to have a SIA Licence, we do actually also have vacancies for this line of work on the Cross-Deck website at the moment. Unfortunately we come across many people who have completed the Close Protection course but the course is run by a company who is not accredited to the relevant organisations.

Maj Retired Jalal ud Din Khan on 22/11/2012 at 04:27am said:

Please let me know whether SIA licence is workable only for UK or for else where also?

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 01:58pm said:

The SIA Licence is a requirement by UK based companies, how ever if you are coming into the UK for security based work you will still need to hold a SIA Licence. UK based companies who employ people to work abroad will still insist that you hold a SIA License as this is becoming a term of employment.

Cleve William Frazier on 30/11/2012 at 08:19pm said:

I've successfully completed the 37 day close protection course offered by Defensa International LLC. and passed the required examination. I am not a resident of the U.K. can I apply for a SIA license? If so how do I get around providing proof of residency within the U.K.?

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 01:49pm said:

You are able to apply for a SIA Licence, but the application must be translated into English. The Close Protection course must be accredited by one of the following: Buckinghamshire New University, City & Guilds, Edexcel, HABC or IQ for you to be able to obtain a licence. Your qualification is accredited by HABC so will not cause any problems. You do how ever need to make the payment to the SIA from a bank account that is registered in the UK. For further information on this please look at

Rob Sadler on 22/11/2012 at 12:45am said:

If I want to do CP, or indeed any security work in the Middle East, (or any other obscure country), do I need SIA?

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 01:22pm said:

Although it has not always been necessary to have a valid SIA Licence for working abroad, many companies are now requesting that you have this as a standard requirement. You can apply for a license when you have the relevant certification by following this link:

jack on 02/01/2013 at 07:12pm said:

I worked at the 2012 Olympics and did my Level 2 Door Supervision Course, but I didnt get my Licence through that, but now i want to buy my licence. still being qualified can i still buy my licence?? and how can i? I did my training with G4S.. so i am qualified and wish to get my SIA Badge, but do not wish to do the training again?? can anybody help me?

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 01:17pm said:

All you will need to do now is apply for a license from the SIA please see the link below: As long as your qualifications are still in date and you have no previous criminal record you should find this an easy process to follow. I hope this helps you and if you need any further help please feel free to contact us.

Nigel Batchelor on 06/12/2012 at 08:16am said:

My SIA Close Protection (i have 17 years CP experience) has expired as i have been working in Kenya and didnt need to renew it whilst here. Can anyone tell me what the procedure is to renew it?

Cross-Deck on 04/01/2013 at 12:06pm said:

You may find that you need to take part in a refresher course to be able to renew your license. This is dependent on how long you have been operational for and when your license expired. I would suggest you contact the SIA on 0844 892 1025 for further information. If it does appear that you need to enrol on a refresher course please do contact us and we will be able to source this for you from one of our many course providers.

Billy Hallam on 05/11/2012 at 05:11am said:

Hi, I'm working in the Maritime Security Industry at the moment and am interested in obtaining my SIA licence. Is there a course that you recommend. Thanks and regards Billy Hallam

Cross-Deck on 05/11/2012 at 10:10am said:

We have many courses on the Cross-Deck site that you could do to achieve an SIA licence, what course you do depends on the type of licence that you are interested in applying for. Please email us at to let me know what licence you are hoping to obtain and where you live. I will then be able to supply you with further details of courses in your area.

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