SGSIA Security and Guarding Services Industry Authority


Application for a Security Personnel Permit

A person who does security work for another person for reward is required to apply for a permit. Applications should be made to the Commissioner of Police (referred to as 'the Commissioner' hereafter).  The Commissioner will consider whether the applicant is a fit and proper person to do a specific type of security work.  Applicants with a criminal record are not automatically debarred from being a fit and proper person. They are examined on case by case basis, but must meet the criteria specified by the Authority before a permit is granted. The Commissioner may refer the application to the Authority for consideration if the applicant does not satisfy those criteria.  The Commissioner may specify the conditions on the permit.  A permit is valid for a period of five years, or such shorter period as the Commissioner may specify.

A permit is subject to renewal. Holder of a permit should apply to the Commissioner for renewal not earlier than six months and not later than three months before the permit is due to expire.

Definitions of 'Security Work' and 'Security Device'

"security work" means any of the following activities--

(a)        guarding any property;

(b)         guarding any person or place for the purpose of preventing or detecting the occurrence of any offence;

(c)        installing, maintaining or repairing a security device;

(d)        designing for any particular premises or place a system incorporating a security device.

"security device" means a device designed or adapted to be installed in any premises or place, except on or in a vehicle, for the purpose of detecting or recording--

(a)        the occurrence of any offence; or

(b)        the presence of an intruder or of an object that persons are, for reasons of security, not permitted to bring onto the premises or place or any other premises or place.

Categories of Security Work

For the purpose of issuing permits, security work is categorised as follows:

(A)        Guarding work restricted to a "single private residential building", the performance of which does not require the carrying of arms and ammunition;

(B)        Guarding work in respect of any persons, premises or properties, the performance of which does not require the carrying of arms and ammunition and which does not fall within Category A;

(C)        Guarding work, the performance of which requires the carrying of arms and ammunition; and

(D)        Installation, maintenance and/or repairing of a security device and/or designing (for any particular premises or place) a system incorporating a security device.


Both an application fee and an issue or renewal fee are payable on application for the issue or renewal of a permit. Please see the guidance notes of the application forms for details.  Application fee is not refundable. However, all application forms are free of charge.


No individual shall do, agree to do, or hold himself out as doing or as available to do, security work for another person for reward without a valid permit. The offender is liable on conviction to a fine of $10,000 and to imprisonment for three months.

How to Apply

Application forms for the issue and renewal of a permit can be obtained from the Police Licensing Office, District Offices and the Security and Guarding Services Industry Authority.

The address of the Police Licensing Office,
Hong Kong Police Force is:
12/F, Arsenal House, Police Headquarters,
1 Arsenal Street, Wan Chai, Hong Kong

Applicants should read the guidance notes carefully before completing the application form. The completed application form should be returned by post, in person or sent in through employer to the Police Licensing Office.  For enquiries, please contact the Police Licensing Office as follows:

General enquiry: 2860 2973
New Applications: 2860 6543
Renewal Applications: 2860 6546

Application for Variation of Conditions of Permit

A permit holder may apply to the Authority for a variation of the conditions of the permit. In considering an application, the Authority will hear evidence given by the permit holder and the Police. The permit holder may also employ a lawyer to represent him at the hearing. The Authority may, if it thinks fit, vary the conditions of the permit. Application forms for variation of conditions can be obtained from the Authority.

The address of the Security and Guarding Services Industry Authority is:

Room 813, 8/F, Kowloon East Government Offices,
12 Lei Yue Mun Road, Kwun Tong, Kowloon

The completed application form can be returned in person, by post or through GovHK webpage to the Authority. For enquiry, please contact the Authority (Tel.: 2801 6181).

Appeals Against Decisions

Any person aggrieved by a decision made by the Commissioner or the Authority may appeal to the Administrative Appeals Board within 10 days after receiving notice of the decision.

The information given in this pamphlet is for guidance purpose only and does not purport to provide a detailed analysis of the licensing procedure.


A single private residential building means an independent* structure:

(a)    covered by a roof and enclosed by walls extending from the foundation to the roof; and

(b)    used substantially for private residential purpose; and

(c)    with only one main access point+

*       A building is considered to be independent from another if on most of the floors, one cannot get access to the quarters on the same floor in the other building without going to an upper/lower floor, roof or the street.

+    'Main access point' means the entrance gate or lift lobby or staircase commonly used by residents to gain access to their flats. This excludes emergency and fire exit.