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Procedure descriptions

License for security services

All activities in security services (e.g. protection of facilities and installations or personal security) require a special license. Security service includes taking specific action to protect the life or property of strangers against interventions from a third party.

The specific activities that are included in the term security services are diversified. They range

  • from the conventional surveillance of bicycles, motor vehicles and buildings
  • to security services for events,
  • passenger screening,
  • carrying out armoured transport services, personal security
  • to the surveillance of industrial and military plants and also nuclear power stations.

To carry out specific surveillance tasks (e.g. certain control patrols, surveillance of discos, protection against shoplifters) you are also required to take a competence exam (IHK).

Responsible department



The license can only be issued to you, if you as the applicant have the required reliability to run the business, and can prove that you have the necessary funds or corresponding collateral and also your personal competence to run the business (see also required documents).


The application for the licence for security services has to be submitted to the responsible authority.

Required documents

  • completed application form
  • copy of the identity card or comparable identity documents
  • for proof of the corporate legal form
    • If the location of your company is in Germany, you will need:
      • for registered companies: an excerpt of the Commercial Register (Handelsregisterauszug) and if applicable a copy of the shareholders agreement (e.g. for a company constituted under civil law, (GbR)).
    • If your company is located abroad, you will need documents from the country where it is located which prove its legal form.
  • for proof of personal reliability
    • If your place of residence is in Germany, you will normally need:
    • If your place of residence is abroad, you will need documents from your native country, which prove that you have the personal reliability to provide the requested service.
  • proof that seminars have been completed at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IHK) or a recognised equivalent proof in accordance with the surveillance regulations, this also applies to your employees.
  • proof that you have adequate funds and securities available to run the business (if the place of residence is in Germany you normally need an excerpt from the debtors’ file)
  • proof that the necessary liability insurance has been concluded

When checking the personal reliability, in individual cases the authorising authority could request alongside the documents listed additional documents, which are appropriate to make a statement about your personal reliability as applicant.

In the case of legal entities (GmbH, corporate companies, AG, registered cooperatives) the application form only has to be completed by the legal entity itself. All personal documents have to be submitted for all natural persons authorised to manage the company (e.g. certificate of good conduct, personal documents). In addition, an excerpt from the Central Trade Register has to be applied for in the case of legal entities.

In the case of partnerships, which as such are not capable of holding a licence (GbR, KG, OHG, PartG, GmbH & Co. KG), each of the managing partners requires the licence. I.e. an application form and all personal documents are required for each person.

Tip: If necessary, more information on this subject can be obtained from the responsible trade authorities of also from the relevant Chamber of Commerce and Industry.


The amount charged is based on the local regulations governing the fees.

Release note

The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Wirtschaftsministerium released it on 04.08.2015. Only the German text is legally binding. The Federal State does not assume any liability for the translated texts.
In cases of doubt or if you have any questions or problems, please contact the relevant authorities directly.