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Properly Check the Credentials of Companies You May Engage

In the course of our work, we've been retained by numerous clients to provide due diligence business background checks on persons and / or companies they are looking to hire and do business with.  What we find generally surprises the client who otherwise would have moved forward in retaining persons or business entities who were not what they purported to be. 

The security industry is not immune to these circumstances and the stakes are much higher for public figures who do not properly "vet" the persons or businesses they allow into their lives.  In fact, our experience is that the high-level security services industry is more susceptible to "hired gun" personas who are not fully qualified, not fully licensed, not fully insured, and/or who have less than acceptable background histories (criminal records, etc).

For those clients looking to hire a high-level security firm such as ours, we recommend at a minimum that you first assess potential service firms for:

  Proper security licensing (Private Patrol Operator and Guard Card) and Investigative license (for investigative services).  Visit the Bureau of Security and Investigative Services to verify properly licensed firms operating / based in California. NO INDIVIDUAL OR COMPANY CAN LAWFULLY PROVIDE SECURITY SERVICES WITHOUT A VALID PRIVATE PATROL OPERATOR LICENSE AND ALL SECURITY STAFF WORKING FOR THEM MUST POSSESS VALID GUARD CARDS.
  Proper General Liability insurance coverage (with limits not less than $1 million per occurrence).  Ask for verifiable certificates of insurance.
  Proper Worker's Compensation (with limits not less than $1 million).  Ask for verifiable certificates of insurance.
  Visit the Better Business Bureau to verify a firm's rating and complaint history.
  Verify the firm has completed thorough background checks on employees including periodic drug testing. 
  Verify the firm has completed comprehensive confidentiality agreements for each of its employees.
  Request a minimum of three industry referrals to assess other's past service experience with the firm.

Legitimate security firms will freely offer this information prior to being hired by the client.  If a client has to make a special request for the information, any hesitation to promptly provide it is a clear indication that you may be dealing with a security firm or individual that is not operating ethically nor within the laws governing the security industry.  At this point, the client should involve their attorney, publicist, business manager, or representative to execute due diligence on their behalf and investigate fully the security service provider's validity.

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