Tag Archives: Close Protection

ICON Academy Executive Protection Training Dates

Celebrity & VIP Protection Course :  (5 Days) August 1 – 5, 2012 

A five-day course of practical theory and hands-on training in the world of Celebrity & VIP Protection including the fundamentals of Close Protection.  Taught by industry veteran Elijah Shaw, who in addition to his corporate clients, has traveled the world as the personal bodyguard of international public figures such as musical giant Usher, supermodel Naomi Campbell, and rap megastar 50 Cent, the class covers not only tactics but marketing & career search.


“Although the program is called Celebrity Protection the content and instruction covers all aspects of the protection industry. Elijah and his team of instructors meet one of the most important criteria of the business – instructors who do or have done what they are teaching, and can teach.”  Tony Scotti, President Tony Scotti Driving 



Advanced Executive Protection Course:  (10 Days) August 6- 15, 2012  

This intensive 10-day class is an excellent tool for Operators sharpening their skills with a focus on conducting close protection assignments with a potential high threat level. Work with experienced professionals who are not teaching “theory” put practical applications developed from many years of doing the job.  Taught by Instructors  in private security working globally in a number of high-risk environments including Iraq, Afghanistan, Europe, Southeast Asia, South and Central America.

If you are interested in learning more about any of the above Close Protection related courses from Icon Services Corporation, including our special financing options, click HERE.  

We stand behind the quality of our teaching methods and can also put you in contact with previous Alumni to talk about their past experiences.  

Group & back-to-back course discounts apply.


Industry Spotlight: Close Protection Specialist Shaun West

Behind the Bodyguard Business holds a spotlight where we feature someone in the Executive Protection, Security or Investigation industry.  Our hope is to provide some insight into our profession and also show newcomers & the media that people from all walks of life and all parts of the globe do this type of work with honor and pride.   No it’s not like the movies, but it can be rewarding, thrilling, and yes, sometimes fun.

Agent Name: Shaun West

Home city: Newcastle, UK

Area of Specialty: Close Protection

Website:     www.shaunwest.co.uk

How did you get into the close protection industry?

I am a former member of the Parachute Regiment, I loved my time in the forces and met some really great people and had some great life experiences but it came to the point where I had to make the choice if I wanted to stay in the Forces and commit to the full term or to move into another direction.  The Close Protection industry was just starting to pickup and I saw the opportunity for another exciting and rewarding career.

While we have an international readership, I know a great number are from the United States.  What do you feel are the differences in working protection in the US versus the UK?

The principles of providing protection remain the same no matter where you are in the world but the way in which the service is delivered has to be different when working across different environments due to the level of threat faced.

One obvious difference in how our roles are carried out between the UK and US is the ability to carry firearms within the US where it is not possible in the UK.

The Security Industry Authority (SIA) is pretty polarizing to UK Operators.  Do you have an opinion on the organization?

I think regulating the UK Security Industry was a fantastic idea by the government but I think the initial implementation was pretty poor.  The teething problems that come with the launching of an organization such as the Security Industry Authority was inevitable but I certainly think that over time things have certainly improved but we now have the uncertainty of what is going to happen with the SIA after recent government announcements reference change.

Hopefully there are only positive days ahead for the UK Security Industry.

I know you have spent a lot of time working in Underdeveloped countries.  Assuming the risks are higher there, what do you attribute to your success as an Operator?

I feel privileged to have gained experience in many different countries from working in underdeveloped and higher risk regions to some of the most fantastic sort after locations in the world.  My success as an operator has been achieved by not being afraid of hard work and continually striving to better myself at all times.  Personal development is also very important and something you must continue to pursue if you are looking for a long-term and successful career within the security industry.

What do you think is one of the biggest misconceptions of the industry?

Looking from a UK perspective there is definitely a misconception about the amount of work that is available out there and I think at the ground level a lot of guys/girls are mis-sold when trying to break into the CP sector.  The UK is currently saturated with operators and the pool of guys/girls on the ground is only getting bigger which means the opportunity’s are less.  Many find it disappointing when they complete their course and can’t find employment, this is extremely disheartening for the new guys entering the industry.  However in today’s world opportunities will always arise within the industry you just have to be bold enough to go and grab them when they arise.

To those coming up after you in the industry, what advice would you give?

Remain humble, work hard, learn from every task you carry out by analyzing how you could do better next time and finally Network, Network, Network!

Happy New Years!

I just wanted to say Happy New Year to everyone who visits Icon – Behind The Bodyguard Business. Special acknowledgment goes to all the men and women in the security industry who take the time out of there schedule to read and comment on the site. Have a prosperous 2009 and be safe!

Elijah J. Shaw, CEO
Icon Services Corporation

ICON Santa