Approved Contractor Scheme

Our Approved Contractor Scheme (ACS) is a quality assurance scheme for the private security industry.

We approve private security companies. This is different to SIA licensing, where we license people.

Participation in our ACS is voluntary, so any company that is part of the scheme has chosen to be.

You can find out if a company is approved by searching our register of approved contractors.

Are you a private security company? Find out how you apply for approval.

Who can be an SIA approved contractor?

The scheme covers the security activities that we license. They are:

  • Manned guarding, which includes:
    • Cash and valuables in transit
    • Close protection
    • Door supervision
    • Public space surveillance (CCTV)
    • Security guarding
  • Key holding
  • Vehicle immobilisation

So we can approve a company for close protection, but not for installing alarms or providing consultancy services because we do not license those activities.

We cannot approve companies unless they provide private security services. We do not approve training providers.

It is a criminal offence for a company to claim it is an approved contractor when it is not. This includes indirectly claiming to be an approved contractor by displaying the ACS accreditation mark.

Approval is for specific activities

The approval we grant is for specific activities, not for the company as a whole. So, for a company offering door supervision and security guarding services, we might:

  • approve it for door supervision but not security guarding
  • approve it for security guarding but not door supervision
  • approve it for both door supervision and security guarding

We approve companies on a simple pass/fail basis: you are either an approved contractor or you are not. We do not grant levels of approval such as gold, silver and bronze.