Armed or Unarmed Executive Protection?
I am a gun guy, not a “Gun Nut,” but a gun guy. I have been around weapons my whole adult life and am very capable and safety conscious. I train regularly and take care of my guns.
In some areas there is no question about having an armed agent around your principle. Those areas are locations where historically carjacking at gunpoint and kidnappings for ransom are high. Unfortunately, in most of these locations, if your principle is abducted, there is a good chance they’ll get killed anyway so be prepared. If this is the case you need to be aware of these requirements:
- Is my agent proficient with his weapon?
- Can we (US) carry in this location?
- Which local nationals can carry in this location?
- Have I seen his credentials?
- What experience does my LN have in doing EP work?
Let’s not just get an armed guy and assume he’ll be able to get your Principle to safety or keep him safe. Although there are many great LNs. out there, unfortunately some are not trained as well and as much on weapons manipulation and safety. Bullets, range time, licensing, and weapons cost more in these areas and are hard to come by.
Ultra high net worth individuals and key persons in Corporate always warrant armed security. Even though good opsec may be in place you can have wrong place at the right time to be a factor.
In some areas on the border that are highly trafficked by US personnel, low incidence areas, daytime travellers, I would go without an armed agent, low profile vehicle in and out. No night time outings, staying in known areas etc…
Some Corporations absolutely demand it. Some do not and always want to go with the minimum. It is our job as a safety provider to educate them and make them aware of all pros and cons. Don’t take a job if you believe the client is trying to steer you a certain way. Give them the facts and the reasons and they will most likely understand your point. Also don’t put your own team at risk just to get the work. Saludos and be safe out there.