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close protection Team

close protection Team

Breakdown of responsibilities

A bodyguard keeps crowds away from his client, a model, during a photo shoot.

The role of a bodyguard depends on several factors. First, it depends on the role of a given bodyguard in a close protection team. A bodyguard can be a driver-bodyguard, a close-protection officer (who escorts the client), or part of an ancillary unit that provides support such as IED detection, electronic “bug” detection, counter-sniper monitoring, pre-searches facilities, and background-checks people who will have contact with the client. Second, the role of a bodyguard depends on the level of risk that the client faces. A bodyguard protecting a client at high risk of assassination will be focusing on very different roles (e.g., checking cars for IED devices, bombs, watching for potential shooters, etc.) than a bodyguard escorting a celebrity who is being stalked by aggressive tabloid photographers (e.g., the role will be to ask the photographers to maintain their distance and block the path of aggressive cameramen). Some bodyguards specialize in the close quarter protection of children of VIPs, to protect them from kidnapping or assassination, a role which is nicknamed “mannyguarding” (a pun on the word “nanny”).

Driving

In some cases, bodyguards also drive their clients. Normally, it is not sufficient for a client to be protected by a single driver-bodyguard, because this would mean that the bodyguard would have to leave the car unattended when they escort the client on foot. If the car is left unattended, this can lead to several risks: an explosive device may be attached to the car; an electronic “bug” may be attached to the car; the car may be sabotaged; or city parking officials may simply tow away the vehicle or place a wheel lock on the tire. If parking services tow away or disable the car, then the bodyguard cannot use the car to escape with the client in case there is a security threat while the client is at his or her meeting.

The driver should be trained in evasive driving techniques, such as executing short-radius turns to change the direction of the vehicle, high-speed cornering, and so on. The car used by the client will typically be a large vehicle with a low center of gravity and a powerful engine, such as a BMW. At a minimum, the vehicle should have ballistic glass, some type of armor reinforcement to protect the client from gunfire, and a foam-filled gas tank. “Run-flat” tires and armor protection for the driver are also desirable.

 

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