September 10, 2021
Why security is important at events
When organising any event, whether it’s a major global event or a small-scale gathering, you need to consider the security requirements for that specific event.
Security isn’t just for big concerts, festivals, and sporting events – it helps keep guests and staff safe at any event.
As the host of any event, it is your responsibility to ensure the safety of all people in attendance. With so many things to consider when organising an event, it’s important the event organisers ensure that security is factored in from the start and that there is a clear plan for managing the specific security requirements of the event – successful security cannot be done on the fly so it’s important to leave plenty of time to plan accordingly.
Create an event security plan
Behind every successful event is a security plan that has been designed specifically for a particular event – there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to event security.
Preparation is at the heart of any successful event security programme and it’s important that your security provider has adequate time to assess the venue, the location, the audience, and the type of event. This allows them to tailor the security requirements of the event and ensure all bases are covered.
Consider how much security is required for your event
There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to the ratio of security personnel to guests. You may read that it is good to allow one security specialist for every 10 guests or one specialist for every 100 guests in a larger setting or most often, somewhere in between is best practise, however, the requirements for a heavy metal concert or political rally compared to a classical music concert are likely to be completely different.
That’s why it’s important to understand the nature of the event and the likely attendees in order to make an appropriate decision when it comes to the number of security personnel required. As an outside contractor, we liaise with events staff to carry out detailed risk assessments and ensure the right level of safety and security is provided for a specific event.
What type of security personnel is required?
As well as considering the number of security personnel you require for a specific event, it’s also important to consider the type of personnel you need. Event security guards can help to guard entrances and manage crowd control, however, it’s often the security staff that you don’t see that really make a big difference, especially at large scale events or events where you need to maintain the security of a specific individual or individuals.
Event security requires a multi-layered approach to security planning to protect the guests, property, and venue. Here at The Chivalry Group, we bring a personal and comprehensive approach to handling all the necessary details to first meet and then exceed our client’s expectations.
This includes assessing the security personnel requirements of a specific event and ensuring we provide the right personnel to ensure all security requirements of the event are met.
In addition to in-house security staff and contracted security personnel, it may also be appropriate to call on the support of local law enforcement as well as alerting medical staff and the fire brigade. For many major events, ambulances will often be on-site to help to deal with any potential problems quickly and effectively and it’s important that they are looped in at the planning stage, so everyone is clear about procedures for contacting medical response.
One important aspect of event security today is guest screening. This will usually involve checking guest’s bags on arrival in order to reduce the risk of guests bringing any sort of weapon or contraband into your event.
As well as looking for knives, firearms and glass bottles, it’s also important to check bags for alcohol and illicit substances as inebriated guests can also pose potential security threats and it’s important to minimise that threat by limiting their consumption to authorised on-site vendors.
Guest screening and monitoring can also be maintained via CCTV depending on the venue. Any suspicious behaviour can be quickly flagged and security staff on the ground can deal with any potential threats quickly and discreetly.
Keep your security visible
The main goal of security at events isn’t to respond to threats. The goal is to prevent threats from happening in the first place. It’s best if a potential agitator sees your security measures and moves on.
Whilst some of your security staff may be undercover or discreet, it’s important to have a visible presence so people can see that security is being taken seriously and this often helps to put guests at ease, helping them to feel safer. By providing a visible presence, guests also know where to go if they have any security concerns and this can help to eliminate potential threats before they materialise.
Make sure you consider cyber-security risks
Not all event security risks are physical. As an event planner, you’ll want to take some steps to protect your guests’ data, identities, and devices.
Many events will offer free Wi-Fi to guests and it’s important to provide your guests with a secure network that is password protected. This can be tricky depending on the size of your event, however, cybercriminals are known to target large events as a way of accessing your guests’ devices and data.
Ransomware attacks are one of the biggest cybersecurity threats and as well as protecting your guests, it’s also important to protect the data of staff and clients when they may be utilising an external WiFi network at the event destination.
Ensure you have an emergency plan
Whilst the goal of event security is to prevent security threats before they can materialise, it’s important to plan for the worst-case scenario.
At the Chivalry Group, we work with our clients to put in place a detailed emergency plan which forms part of our overall security plan and details the procedure that everyone will enact in the event of a disaster.
The emergency plan would typically include some of the following:
- Different ways to mass evacuate the event
- The locations of safe rooms or areas
- Medical response, resources and escalation
- Where staff should meet during an emergency
- How staff will communicate during an emergency
- How you’ll direct guests during an emergency
- Signage and notifications for guests regarding how to respond
Big or small, event security is important
Hopefully, this post gives you a clear indication of the importance of event security and the need to consider the security requirements for all events, big and small.
Working with an outside event security specialist is often the best way to ensure complete peace of mind when it comes to the security of your event. At The Chivalry Group, our security team will be involved in operational planning and liaison with local contacts and resources, adapting protocols to the attendee’s needs, fitting within their cultural expectations and leading the crisis management planning and execution when required.
It’s all about delivering a professional security service and ensuring your event is managed in a secure and successful manner while not intruding on the goals and ambitions of the event itself.
Whilst we cannot talk about specific events, we can say that we have worked in a number of environments in countries around the world, providing event security for a wide range of events – from major sporting events to smaller, high profile gatherings. Trust is built through our ability and expertise, to understand the individual needs of our clients and the operating environment and to ensure the highest level of security.
You can read more about our event security services and get in touch with the team today.