How Do I Become a Special Security Officer?

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  • Written By: D. Nelson
  • Edited By: M. C. Hughes
  • Last Modified Date: 22 May 2019
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Special security officers are high level security professionals who commonly work for government agencies and large corporations that store sensitive or valuable data and other assets. Unlike other security professionals, such as security guards, special security officers commonly must be familiar with cutting edge security and detection systems and in some cases might also need to be familiar with the basics of information security. Special security officers also commonly manage employees on their security teams.

To become a special security officer, it may not be essential to have a college degree. Many employers, however, request that job applicants have some background using complex security systems and in some cases might require that job candidates also have some professional certification. A person who wants to become a special security officer also should have at least several years of experience in some kind of high profile security position to prove that he or she is familiar with protocol, as well as experience or training in management.


In most cases, a person who wants to become a special security officer does not need to have a college degree, but this doesn't mean that this kind of credential isn't helpful. Individuals in these positions should be able effectively to operate complex security systems. People who have been through technical, vocational, or academic educations often have experience using software that those who have not might be lacking. It also is common for employers to prefer to hire special security officers who have developed critical thinking skills. These often are honed in challenging college courses.

A person who wants to become a special security officer who protects digital information might need to have a higher level of training to earn this kind of job. In some cases, special security officers are responsible for enacting digital security measures, such as firewalls and password protection. To become a special security officer in this context, it might not be necessary to have an undergraduate degree in computer science, though some training in computer security, such as through an associate's degree program, can provide you with necessary credentials.

Any person who wants to become a special security officer should be prepared to lead a team of security professionals. Effective leadership does not come naturally to most people, so training and experience often is necessary. While many employers provide their security officers with leadership training, employers might prefer candidates who either have held supervisory roles in the past or who have participated in some kind of leadership education.



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