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Texas Security Guard Licensing Information

United Federation LEOS-PBA TX | Texas
United Federation LEOS-PBA TX | Texas
United Federation LEOS-PBA TX | Texas
United Federation LEOS-PBA TX | Texas
United Federation LEOS-PBA TX | Texas

State Security Licensing Authorities: Texas

How do I get my security guard license in Texas?

To become a licensed security guard in the state of Texas, you must first complete the Level II Training Course and Test. All commissioned and non-commissioned (armed and unarmed) security officers must go through this training. The training must be taken at a licensed school and taught by a licensed instructor.

The Department of Public Safety (DPS) regulates the private security profession in Texas. DPS protects the public by conducting fingerprint-based background checks on applicants, investigating and resolving complaints, and taking disciplinary action against licensees or seeking criminal prosecution of those who perform private security services without a license.

The private security profession includes armed and unarmed security guards, personal protection officers, private investigators, alarm systems installers and monitors, armored car couriers, electronic access control device installers, and locksmiths. DPS regulates the private security profession under the authority of the Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1702 and the related administrative rules.

In the state of Texas the Private Security Bureau whose department headquarters is located in Austin regulates the unarmed security guard. The guidelines that the person wanting to be in a security sector must adhere to the rules of the Non-Commissioned Security Officer section 1702.113 in order to obtain a Texas license.

The law in Texas for unarmed security officers is they must complete 30 hours of training at a certified facility. There are other specific qualifications in order to be licensed:

  • The licensed unarmed security guard is required to wear a uniform indicating the company they are employed.

  • The person that has been convicted of a felony or a Class A misdemeanor can not hold a security license for 20 years after the conviction.

  • The person that has been convicted of a Class B misdemeanor cannot hold a security license in the state of Texas with some exceptions for a five-year period.

  • The first time DWI that is a Class B misdemeanor will not be disqualified from holding an unarmed security guard license.

  • The person applying must have the right to work in the United States and must supply tax information for the Internal Revenue Service.

  • An FBI style background check will be done prior to obtaining a Texas security license.

  • Drug screening will be conducted; anyone that does not pass the drug screening cannot be licensed.

  • The applicant must be at least 18 years of age.

  • A high school diploma must be held or an equivalency exam


The unarmed security guard classes provided by a certified facility will include leadership skills, safety training, training in non-violent disagreement resolutions and the use of force.

There will also be education of the Texas Private Security Bureau chapter 1702 of the Texas occupation code. This is the code that regulates the security field. There is training in response to emergencies, report writing and legal issues. Training is provided in dealing with the public in a professional manner during crisis situations.

Once the certified training course has been completed there will be a required written examination required by the state of Texas to obtain licensing. Individual licensing applications can only be accepted when a security company gainfully employs the individual.

When applying for an unarmed security license a permanent license will be received in 4 to 6 weeks from the date of receiving the application. This Texas license will expire two years from the date of issue and will need to be renewed if the holder of the license is still working in the security sector.

The unarmed security guard once licensed can be employed in settings such as schools, hospitals, museums, libraries, shopping malls and other types of retail stores. In these settings, the unarmed security personnel is responsible for shoplifting, emergencies including medical and fire, until trained personnel arrives at the scene in response. These situations are to be carried out in a professional manner, which does not alert other patrons of the event that is taking place.


Training as an armed security guard and becoming licensed in the state of Texas means fulfilling the state required amount of training at a certified facility. The requirements for the armed security applicant are outlined in the Texas Administrative Code, Texas Department of Public Safety. Prior to applying for the security license the applicant must complete a 30-hour training course.
Applying for this license the applicant will submit to finger printing, a background check and submit a color 3 inch by 5-inch photograph. This photograph will be taken wearing the security uniform, another photograph will also be required that measures 8 inches by 10 inches in uniform that will be kept on file. Both photographs are to be close up and show the badge, shoulder patch and nameplate.

Training that will be provided in the certified facility will include:

  • Training in CPR and emergency first aid

  • Legal and civil issues

  • Crowd dispersement

  • Criminal detainment

  • Training in firearms

  • Firearms safety

  • Education in the Texas occupation code1702 from the Texas Private Security Bureau

  • Report writing

  • Preparation for the end of training written examination

Training will also include being professional when dealing with the public, proper handling of emergency situations and reporting to official authorities. The training will include the proper handling of firearms, marksmanship and target training. There will also be preparation for the written examination that is required to take upon successfully finishing the 30 hours of training required. Armed security guards will be provided with training to handle alarm operation and security camera employment; they will also be trained in professional treatment of the public.
The armed security guard application will include:

  • Proof of training and copies of successful final examination

  • Fingerprinting

  • Complete background check

  • Either be a United States citizen or provide proof to work in the United States legally

  • Submit to drug testing


The license can be applied for after being employed by a licensed security company, with the permanent card being issued in four to six weeks. Renewal of the license must be done sixty days prior to the expiration date of the permanent license if still employed as an armed security guard. In the state of Texas should the applicant change employers the license is transferable and will not need to be reapplied for until the time of license expiration date. The background check and application will be declined if there has been a felony and certain Class B misdemeanors within the past 20 years or a conviction that prohibits the use of firearms for life.

The armed security guard in the state of Texas will find employment in government offices, banks, museums, in the industrial field and stadiums. There will be employment in private sectors, as well as properties such guarded housing or apartment complexes. There will be some positions that will require holding a valid Texas state drivers license; these can include armed transport of funds and other valuables by companies, banks and corporations

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