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Sié Chéou-Kang CenterPrivate Security Monitor

An expert from ArmorGroup (left) trains local members of the Nepal and Maoist Armies on the safe removal of unexploded devices.


PMSC News Reports

Media reports play a critical role both in informing the public and as resource for academic work on the private military and security industry. Because journalists base their reports on a variety of sources, including employees, industry sources, and personal observations, their reports often provide an on-the-ground picture of firms' behavior that is lacking in many of other reports.

The Private Security Monitor's media project aggregates recent media reports into a single feed of the most up to date news articles on private security. After one month articles will retire into our news archives. Importantly, PSM exercises some editorial selectivity in articles, both in type of publication and in the topics presented. As such, this page is not a complete archive of all articles published, but a resource for the most relevant stories issued in the past month.

For those seeking in-depth, investigative journalism, view the investigative reports section at the bottom of this page. Separate from general media articles, these reports provide more extensive analysis on PMSCs from a journalist's perspective.

Recent News

Chandigarh DC cracks whip on security agencies, cancels 13 licences  
The Indian Express |  17 June 2017
> The Chandigarh administration has begun to regulate the functioning of all private security agencies online. Till now, the works related to the agencies were being done manually, making it difficult for the administration to monitor their work.

Uganda: Do Not Tempt Security Guards  
All Africa |  16 June 2017
> The story of hundreds of armed private security guards going for more than six months without pay is not only mind-boggling but absurd. This newspaper on Wednesday, June 14, reported that the angry and grumbling guards are pointing an accusing finger at their employer, Range Protective Services, owned by businessman Habib Kagimu.

No foreign mercenaries allowed, needed in Marawi  
The Philippine Star |  14 June 2017
> The Armed Forces of the Philippines will not allow foreign mercenaries, like those the US has hired in the Middle East, to help retake Marawi from the Islamic State-inspired Maute and Abu Sayyaf groups.

Real Strikers emerges outstanding private security company in Nigeria  
Nigeria Today |  14 June 2017
> Real Strikers Security Services Limited, has been named the most outstanding private guards security company of the year on quality services and effective security vigilance in Nigeria 2017.

Yemeni forces attack Saudi mercenaries’ positions, leave casualties  
PressTV |  11 June 2017
> Yemeni army soldiers, backed by fighters from allied Popular Committees, have launched fresh attacks against positions held by Saudi mercenaries in several provinces across the conflict-ridden country.

Poland charges Russian citizen with being ISIS mercenary in Syria  
Reuters |  09 June 2017
> Polish prosecutors have charged a Russian citizen of Chechen nationality with fighting illegally as a mercenary with Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria, Polish authorities said in a statement on Friday.

Angola: Police Intensify Control Over Firearms  
All Africa |  08 June 2017
> The National Police (PN) are tightly controlling the firearms held by private security companies operating in the southwestern province of Huíla.

Aid Coordinator in Yemen Had Secret Job Overseeing U.S. Commando Shipments  
The New York Times |  06 June 2017
> Mr. Darden’s work offers a rare look into the shadowy world of military contractors that operate in lawless war zones like Yemen, Somalia and Libya.

Palestinian shot dead in Kafr Qasim clash  
Al Jazeera |  06 June 2017
> Israeli private security guard shoots Mohamed Taha during protest against police in Palestinian-majority Israeli town.

Police shut down six unlicenced pvt security agencies  
The Times of India |  03 June 2017
> The US Nagar Police is shutting down private security agencies in the district which are operating without a licence. Last week, six erring agencies were shut down by police.

Gambia: Drop Fake Army Gears  
All Africa |  02 June 2017
> Military wears are purely meant for military officers, as they serve as distinguishing factor between an armed uniform officer and a civilian. The use of uniform falls squarely within the domain of armed and security officials, as opposed to civilians use.

Private defense companies are here to stay — what does that mean for national security?  
Defense News |  01 June 2017
> Share prices of many military and intelligence contractors have risen sharply since the election of Donald Trump as the United States' president.

<< Older News Reports Archive Main

Investigative Reports

African Defence Review

African Defence Review is a dynamic news organisation focused on African security. It provides the most detailed and comprehensive news and commentary of issues on the African continent.

Unloved but Needed: PMCs in Africa

Author: David Pfotenhauer
Publish Date:


In this article, the author finds that the seemingly insoluble dilemma of PMSCs in Africa is not because of PMSCs but because of a lack of imagination on the part of governments and regional bodies as to how to sustainably and effectively employ them. He also argues that the future of PMSCs in Africa will be contingent upon good governance with robust, strategically aligned frameworks that utilize PMSCs to cultivate, but not replace, security and military capabilities.

BBC Reports

The British Broadcasting Corporation is a publically funded news and entertainment company in the United Kingdom. The BBC produces daily news programs as well as in depth investigative reports.

Britain's Private War

Author: BBC Scotland
Publish Date:


In this documentary feature, the BBC investigates the British private security contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan. The report examines both the companies who are contracted to provide security services and the individuals affected by improper practices in the field. 

BBC asked both the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the private security firm G4S for a response to the program. 

  1. FCO's response
  2. G4S's response
The Center for Investigative Reporting

The Center for Investigative Reporting is a non-profit, non-partisan news organization based in Berkeley, California. The Center specializes in in-depth reporting on current issues.


David Isenberg

Author and commentator David Isenberg frequently reports on PMSC issues, including almost daily entries on the Huffington Post.

Federal News Radio

Federal News Radio is a radio news station focused upon stories, news and analysis relevant for U.S. federal government agencies and those who do business with government agencies. It is non-partisan.

National Public Radio

National Public Radio (NPR) creates and distributes award-winning news, information, and music programming to a network of 959 independent stations.

Audio Report: I'm from the Private Sector and I am Here to Help

Author: Nancy Updike
Publish Date:


In this story on NPR program "This American Life," contributing editor Nancy Updike went to Iraq to try to figure out what it's like to be a private citizen working in the middle of a war zone. Among others, Updike interviews private security contractors guarding the Baghdad International Airport and others training Iraqi police forces.

The New Yorker

The New Yorker is a weekly print magazine dedicated to the arts, politics, current events and investigative journalism.

Invisible Army

Author: Sarah Stillman
Publish Date:


This New Yorker article is a profile of the service subcontract industry for the U.S. military. The article discusses the more than seventy thousand "third-country nationals" who work for the American military in war zones. The author details the reports by many TCNs that the conditions they are held in resemble indentured servitude, and also the subcontractors who appear to operate outside the law.


PBS is a private non-profit broadcaster in the United States. It primarily produces educational programming for children and documentary features for adults. 

Private Warriors

Author: PBS Frontline
Publish Date:


Frontline investigates the new world of private contractors servicing U.S. military supply lines, running U.S. military bases, and protecting U.S. diplomats and generals. In the video, FRONTLINE correspondent Martin Smith travels throughout Kuwait and Iraq to give viewers an unprecedented behind-the-scenes look at companies like Kellogg, Brown & Root, a Halliburton subsidiary, and its civilian army. "Private Warriors" also explores a very different kind of contractor—the private world of security teams that work for firms like Blackwater, Aegis, and Erinys—that provide armed protection for U.S. government officials, government offices, military installations and even military commanders.

The website for the episode also contains comment from KBR, and documents uncovered and used during the investigation.


ProPublica is an independent, non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest.

Disposable Army: Civilian Contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan

Publish Date:


This investigation by Propublica explores the issues caused by the U.S. government's heavy reliance on civilian workers in Iraq and Afghanistan. The site features multiple articles, charts, and data on contractor injuries, insurance coverage, and other problems for civilian contractors working for the U.S. government.

The Washington Post

The Washington Post is the largest newspaper in the Washington, DC area and a central reporter on domestic policy issues in the United States. The post produces multiple investigative pieces each year that focus on different aspects of the U.S. government and its agencies.

Contractors Run U.S. Spying Missions in Africa

Author: Craig Whitlock
Publish Date:

Open PDF:

This article is part of a series in the Washington Post covering the U.S. expansion of its secret intelligence operations in Africa. The article describes the use of private contractors to conduct spying operations in Africa, specifically in Uganda. The missions are air surveillance, with contractors doing overflight operations on Uganda searching for the Lord's Resistance Army. Other articles in the series address the efforts of U.S.-hired and paid contractor to train the Ugandan army. 

Top Secret America

Author: Washington Post
Publish Date:


The Washington Post's Top Secret America project describes the huge national security buildup in the United States after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The articles in this series and an online database on the website depict the scope and complexity of the government's national security program through interactive maps and other graphics. Every data point on the Web site is substantiated by at least two public records. At the private-sector level, The Post identified 1,931 companies engaged in top-secret work for the government.