Skip navigation

Sié Chéou-Kang CenterPrivate Security Monitor

Manual eradication's junglas and civilian eradicators often provide state presence and temporary security in areas that have previously seen none and are currently dominated by illegally armed groups.

Global Efforts

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has the broad mission of making the world safer from crime, drugs, and terrorism. It has three programmatic pillars: field-based technical cooperation projects to enhance the capacity of member states to counteract illicit drugs and crime; targeted research and analytical work to increase knowledge and understanding of drugs and crime; and normative work to assist states in the ratification and implementation of relevant international treaties and to develop domestic legislation on drugs, crime and terrorism.

As part of its focus on crime prevention and criminal justice reform, UNODC has investigated the oversight of civilian private security services by state authorities. In 2009, UNODC established an ad hoc open-ended intergovernmental expert group to study civilian private security services. Experts from academia and the private sector were also invited to become members of that group. The group has met twice: at a planning meeting in Abu Dhabi, from 10 to 11 May 2010 and on 12 - 14 October 2011, in Vienna, Austria.

Resolutions

Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, Resolution 18/2

Author: Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
Publish Date:

 

In this resolution, the UNODC Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice invited governments (a) to examine the role played on their territory by civilian private security services, assessing, where applicable and consistent with their national laws and administrative policies, the contribution of such services to crime prevention and community safety; (b) to determine whether national legislation provided adequate oversight; and (c) to share their experiences in that regard with other Member States and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. In the resolution, the Commission also established an ad hoc open-ended intergovernmental expert group to study the role of civilian private security services.  

United Arab Emirates: draft resolution “Strengthening Government oversight of civilian private security services and the contribution of such services to crime prevention and community safety” (E/CN.15/2012/L.2)

Author: Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
Publish Date:

 
Open PDF:
 

In this draft, the UNODC Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice recommends to the UN Economic and Social Council to adopt the appended draft resolution. The resolution contains recommendations of the Expert Group on Civilian Private Security Services (entitled “Abu Dhabi guidelines”). 

Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, Resolution 21/1

Author: UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
Publish Date:

 
Open PDF:
 

In this resolution, the UNODC Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice takes note of the draft preliminary recommendations of the Expert Group on Civilian Private Security Services (entitled “Abu Dhabi guidelines”); requests the UNODC to circulate the Abu Dhabi draft preliminary recommendations on the oversight and regulation of civilian private security services to all Member States through a note verbale requesting their response; and requests the UNODC to prepare a report that summarizes and provides a synthesis of the responses of Member States (this was issued in Jan. 2011 (E/CN.15/2011/14).

Reports

Note by the Secretariat on Civilian Private Security Services: their oversight and their role in and contribution to crime prevention and community safety (E/CN.15/2011/14)

Publish Date:

 

In its resolution 18/2, the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice of the UNODC invited Governments (a) to examine the role played on their territory by civilian private security services; (b) to determine whether national legislation provided adequate oversight; and (c) to share their experiences in that regard with other Member States and the UNODC. This Note contains the state reports. In most of the reporting states, there seems to be an adequate legal oversight of private security services with a responsible department for authorization and also for oversight and surveillance. A few states, however, reported their legal oversight over civilian private security services to be deficient. The Note concludes that the role of civilian private security services is still subsidiary to government forces in most of the responding states, while primary responsibility for public order, safety and security rests with governments. 

Background Paper on Civilian Private Security Services: their role, oversight and contribution to crime prevention and community safety

Author: Mark LaLonde
Publish Date:

 
Open PDF:
 

This paper was circulated in advance of the Abu Dhabi Planning Meeting (10-11 May 2010) of the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, which was tasked with establishing an ad hoc open-ended intergovernmental expert group pursuant to Commission resolution 18/2. The paper examines the evolution of the civilian private security industry, its expansion, and regulatory frameworks that apply to such companies. The paper concludes with a look at exemplary relationships between private security firms and domestic law enforcement agencies. 

Outcome of the planning meeting held in Abu Dhabi on 10 and 11 May 2010 for an expert group to study the role of civilian private security services, their oversight and their contribution to crime prevention and community safety (E/CN.15/2011/CRP.2)

Author: Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
Publish Date:

 
Open PDF:
 

This report provides the outcomes of the UNODC planning meeting held in Abu Dhabi to prepare for the establishment of an ad hoc open-ended intergovernmental expert group to study the role of civilian private security services, their oversight and their contribution to crime prevention and community safety. The report sets out the work plan and operations of the intergovernmental expert group. 

Civilian Private Security Services: their role, oversight and contribution to crime prevention and community safety (UNODC/CCPCJ/EG.5/2011/CRP.1)

Author: Robin Wickham Palmer, Mark Button
Publish Date:

 
Open PDF:
 

This background paper was prepared for the Expert Group on Civilian Private Security Services in advance of its meeting in Vienna in October 2011. The Expert Group was established by the UNOCD Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. Drawing on the analysis contained in the Note by the Secretariat on responses by Member States about the operations and oversight of civilian private security, the background paper contains recommendations the Expert Group may wish to consider at its meeting.

State Regulation concerning Civilian Private Security Services and their Contribution to Crime Prevention and Community Safety

Publish Date:

 
Open PDF:
 
This UN Office on Drugs and Crime handbook covers the recent growth of civilian private security services and is concerned with the regulation of security services within individual states. The handbook contains ways for private security services to become involved in crime prevention and community safety, including regulations and case studies.  Further, the handbook provides information on enforcement, inspection and complaints.

Report on the meeting of the Expert Group on Civilian Private Security Services held in Vienna from 12 to 14 October 2011 (UNODC/CCPCJ/EG.5/2011/2)

Author: Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
Publish Date:

 

This report summarizes an intergovernmental expert group meeting held in Vienna, Austria, 12-14 October 2011. That meeting addressed the issues outlined in resolution 18/2, "Civilian private security services: their role, oversight and contribution to crime prevention and community safety."