This module contains the following:  

  • Video introduction with Henrik Bramsborg (DK).
  • Text and written material by Craig Pedersen (SA).
  • What is a SAP by Craig Pedersen (SA). 
  • Fundamentals of advance work Nikolai Ehlers (BE). 
  • Venue security and routes Henrik Bramsborg (DK). 
  • References and links to external educational websites.   

Downloadable files:

  • Executive Protection Checklist 
  • Considerations when escorting female clients

Henrik Bramsborg

Henrik Bramsborg (DK) is a professional bodyguard operating out of Northern Europe. Henrik Bramsborg works as a security professional and is also an author of several books. 

Nikolai Ehlers

Nikolai Ehlers (BE) is a security professional with a background in the UN Close Protection Unit. Today Nikolai Ehlers works with private sector security and executive security.

Craig Pedersen

Craig Pedersen (SA) is a security consultant and author of books about close protection operations. Craig Pedersen has many years of frontline experience. 

Security Advance Party (SAP)

Security Advance Party, commonly known as SAP, is a highly specialized job in my opinion. After the initial briefing, it is the SAP team's job, to go out, collect intelligence and secure the route and/or venue, that the VIP will have to use. 

Below is a great description of the job, by Craig Petersen: 

SAP team

SAP team functionality is more pronounced on large or high threat operations; however it is important for one man operators to have a thorough understanding of SAP team duties; as they will be required to include these in their pre-assignment planning.

The major function of the SAP team is to inspect, secure and hold a venue for the principal's arrival. The venue could be a hotel room, conference center, auditorium, office or residence. The PES and OC will rely heavily on the SAP team and their contribution to the overall protective effort should never be underestimated.

Prior to the principal's arrival at a venue, the SAP team will have an extensive amount of preparation to do. This includes assessing the premises and identifying management and security staff for liaison and assistance. They will also be required to screen employees coming into contact with the principal and possibly set up a mobile ops room.

Further to this, it is the SAP team that bears the responsibility for clearing the venue of improvised explosive devices as well as electronic surveillance devices (bugs) as well as holding surveillance prior to the principal's arrival for known suspects that may pose a threat.

Now, when you get a SAP gig, it's important that you adapt a diplomatic personality. You are the first person to represent your client and the security team. If you, for whatever reason, have a fallout with someone in a venue, remedy this fast and politely. Heck, be humble if you have to, just FIX IT!

There's nothing more annoying, than a security manager or room service department, that won't cooperate with the big team, because a SAP team member has been bossy or appeared "important" towards the venue staff.

A SAP starts with an initial briefing, where the most important questions are answered:

When is the assignment (From/to)?

Who are we protecting?

Where are we going (from/to)?

Why are we hired?

If you are lucky, some data may have been supplied by the client, such as adversaries, existing and former liaisons and maybe data about the event venue.

After this, the rest is up to you. Research whatever you can about the client, adversaries, event and venue, before going anywhere. Ask questions back to the client, if something is not in sync with what he/she told you initially. They are often misinformed on dates, time or practical logistics. Your job is to discover this, before doing the security advance, or at the very latest, before the client embarks on their journey.

Once you've confirmed initial data, you plan the trip to the venue. This is done by at least 2 routes, keeping the timeframe in mind. Now you can contact the venue and tell them you are coming/arrange meetings. Go to the venue, liaise with management and figure out if the staff is adequately trained, the place/s secure and figure out, what to do if things go sour. Doing so, you'll take pictures and film all possible chokepoints/dangerspots and discuss with your colleague. Daily report and film should be e-mailed to the team at home.

I suggest you get a little black book called "Executive Protection Specialist Handbook" by Glazebrook and Nicholson if you can. It is a wonderful tool with every little checklist you can imagine.

Tactical briefing

Once satisfied, you either do a tactical briefing online, or you go home and do a tactical briefing. The tactical briefing should consist of at the very least:

· Responsibility update of and for team members.

· Update on adversaries, friendlies and client.

· Step-by-step description of the trip.

· Description of event site w. pictures/film.

· Description of hotel w. pictures/film. 

· Description of evacuation routes w. pictures/film.

· Adjustment of timetable After this, it is pretty much launch time.

SAP team travel ahead and secure the venue with local help. Once teamleder is introduced to locals, updated and have everything under control, SAP team can move on to next venue, if necessary.

General threat assessment

Safety consideration for escorting women who have been attacked or threatened with violence. This is a publication that can be used by and security professional that has to work with stalking and domestic violence cases.

Download here..

Executive protection checklist

A general executive protection checklist that is good for all types of personal protection operations especially for corporate and executive security. The checklist contains many good ideas about essential equipment that should be used.

Download here..

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