​You are always more than welcome to contact us if you have any questions about our organization, membership or our training courses. Please read our FAQ before contacting us.



Question: Does taking an IAPPA course or training guarantee close protection and/or other types of security work?


Answer: No. IAPPA makes no claims of helping any member to get employment. While being members with a worldwide renown organization throws a much better light at any professional and some jobs can't be provided without an IAPPA certification, our organization offers no job-placement services.

Anyone claiming to provide graduates from private sector security training centres with work after having completed one of their courses is most likely not telling the truth. We strongly recommend that you avoid such providers of specialized security training.

Question: Does becoming an IAPPA member help me get into the close protection industry?

Answer: Becoming a member of an international organization that has been “on the map” since 1989 can help you boost your resume and, at the same time, shows others that you are a dedicated and serious security professional.

Question: I feel that I have something important to offer IAPPA. Can I get involved?

Answer: YES, we are always interested in people that want to promote IAPPA and our concept(s). IAPPA lives for its members and by its members.

Question: How much does it cost to start an IAPPA chapter?

Answer: NOTHING. We do not sell IAPPA as a franchise. We (The Board of Directors) select individuals that have been with us for some time and have shown that they are dedicated to IAPPA and give them the opportunity to become regional or local representatives. Some later become national or regional directors.

Question: I own and operate my own security agency and I would like to promote myself as a professional vendor of specialized security services. Can I sign up with IAPPA as corporate member/sponsor?

Answer: It depends if you live up to the IAPPA standards for corporate membership. IAPPA does not sell advertisement space/affiliation in the form of corporate memberships (listing on our website). The way IAPPA works as an association is not geared towards offering visibility in exchange for money.

Question: How long does it take for IAPPA to get back to me?

Answer: Please give us 2 weeks to get back in touch. Normally we reply within 72 hours.

Question: Does IAPPA membership qualify me as a personal protection agent/security professional all over the world?

Answer: NO. Even having completed an IAPPA course or having membership in IAPPA or any other security organization for that matter, does not bypass regional, local or national security industry acts. For instance, in the UK you need your SIA license, in the USA you have to work in accordance with your local state laws that regulate personal protection operations. In the EU you have to respect each member nations national security industry acts. No such a thing as an international security license for private sector security professionals exists. Every year, security professionals from all over the world end up in serious legal problems because they fail to respect local and national security industry acts.

Question: Does a membership with IAPPA allow me to carry weapons?

Answer: NO, there is no such a thing as a “international weapons permit”. The usage and possession of firearms and other weapons can have severe consequences. In some countries of the world, private security officers are legally permitted to use and carry weapons while on duty, but this rule only applies to national private security officers. Other nations have a much stricter policy on this issue. We strongly recommend that these laws are respected and taken seriously prior to international transportation of weapons of any sort. Failing to do so, can and will most likely result in criminal prosecution. Some countries regard personal self-defence items as weapons. This can include items such as; handcuffs, ballistic vests, pepper sprays (OC) or batons. Others regard the usage of ordinary two-way radios as criminal and suspicious activity that can result in deportation or criminal investigation. Never assume anything when it comes to weapons.

Question: Is IAPPA Membership recognized by any country or organization?


Answer: Yes, some countries e.g. in the Middle East require that security consultants (Close Protection Agents) and security managers have proven membership with an international security or law enforcement organization. IAPPA is such an organization, and we have members in all those countries. Thus, IAPPA is recognized on official level in several countries of the world as a respected and serious security association.



Question: What does PPA, CPA, CPO or EPS stand for? How do you decide what is what?

Answer: Different organizations call their graduates different things. Very few organizations actually use the word bodyguard, instead most organizations call their members/graduates agents, operators, specialist and so on. It is the organization itself that decides what terminology it uses, and we respect that some call themselves Close Protection Agents, Executive Protection Specialists, Close Protection Officers. IAPPA has many members with many different backgrounds. For example, some members have served with the armed forces in MP branches and likely have undergone months and months of intensive training in Close Protection Operations, but they do not necessarily have a diploma that clearly says Executive Protection Specialist. In these situations, we look at the training and duration of actual close protection experience, types of assignments, etc. before granting them a title.

Question: What are the most common titles used by people in close protection operations?

Answer: Please see the list below (this is not a complete list)

PPA, Personal Protection Agent

PSA, Protective Service Agent

CPP, Certified Protection Professional (ASIS)

PSP, Physical Security Professional (ASIS)

CPA, Close Protection Agent

CPO, Close Protection Officer

CPO, Close Protection Operator

EPS, Executive Protection Specialist

EPA, Executive Protection Agent

ESA, Executive Security Agent

ESA, Executive Security Assistant

PPS, Personal Protection Specialist

PPO, Personal Protection Operator

PPO, Personal Protection Officer

CSA, Corporate Security Agent


The above mentioned titles are the most common used by our members, some associations use other titles and we continue to integrate these in IAPPA.


Question: I have been trained by an organization other than yours and I want to become certified? Is this possible?

Answer: Yes, however there are some associations that we do not accept or recognize. They are very few and limited though. If you have been trained by organization X, and your title is EPS – Executive Protection Specialist the certification board can certify you as Certified Close Protection Agent or Certified Personal Protection Agent. Please read more about certification.

Question: I have no formal hands-on training in the close protection field, but I have many years of experience. Can I become certified?

Answer: Most people that apply without formal training are denied certification. But some individuals who have proven experience and “know-how” in close protection operations are granted the opportunity to become certified. On this regard, wide evidence must be provided to the certification board that clearly demonstrate that they are worth the title “Certified Close Protection Agent”. We are glad to certify professionals who live up to the standards we advocate for but we do not sell titles just because someone is  willing to pay for it.