The SIA in statistics: January 2014

The Security Industry Authority has issued some statistics on its licensing operations, intelligence gathering, enforcement actions, and Approved Contractor Scheme.

Individual licensing

By 21 January 2014 there are 382,777 active SIA licences held by 339,940 individuals.

The breakdown of the licence holders in the licensable sectors are:

Door Supervision: 221,926 (58%),
Security Guarding: 93,664 (24%),
Public Space Surveillance CCTV: 43,149 (11%),
Close Protection: 13,412 (4%),
Cash and Valuables in Transit: 9,873 (3%),
Key Holding: 259 (0.07%),
Vehicle Immobilisation: 94 (0.02%).
Since the first SIA licence was issued in April 2004 the SIA has issued over 1,000,000 licences.

Year on year the number of licences issued increases. In 2012 there was an exceptional demand as 163,000 licences were issued; this spike was most likely a result of security relating to the Olympic Games.

Licence processing times

As a result of improved licensing systems the SIA is able to process licence applications well above its target.

In 2013, 87% of all licence applications were processed within 25 working days against a target of 85%. Processing times have exceeded this target for the past four years.

Licence regions and demographic

The regions where the most SIA licences are issued are[1]:

London: 27%,
North West: 13%,
South East: 11%,
North East: 11%.
Male licensees make up 92%[2] of the holders, and the majority of licensees are aged 26 to 45[3]. UK nationals make up (77%) of licence holders.[4]


Information is important for the SIA to be successful in maintaining compliance with the law.

Between 1 January 2012 and 31 December 2013 the SIA received 10,578 intelligence logs.

The most common source of intelligence received was via the SIA website (38%), with other common sources being intelligence received from our enforcement partners (15%), and Crimestoppers (14%).

These statistics exemplify the close working relationship the SIA has developed with the public, the industry, charities and other government enforcement agencies.


Since March 2013 there have been 17 successful SIA prosecutions against companies and individuals. We have issued 337 written warnings and 59 improvement notices to security companies.

Between 1 January 2008 and 31 December 2013, 22,722 licence applications were refused and 33,945 licences revoked.


We currently have 770 approved contractors that deploy 133,000 operatives – accounting for approximately 66% of the licensable operatives within the private security industry.

We held our first ACS forums in November 2006.  Since then we have run over 100 regional events across the UK.

At the last round of forums in November 2013 we took 350 delegate bookings and had 161 approved contractors represented.


Since March 2013 our digital community has grown by over 18%. We welcome 6,070 followers on Facebook and 4,164 on Twitter. Since March our Facebook page has been ‘reached’ over 205,000 times.

SIA Website