The Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSiRA) was established in terms of Section 2 of the Private Security Industry Regulation Act (56 of 2001) in 2002. The primary objectives of PSiRA are to regulate the private security industry and to exercise effective control over the practice of the occupation of security service provider in the public and national interest and in the interest of the private security industry itself.

According to Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority’s Annual Report for 2013/2014 financial year, the private security industry recorded a 9.35% (487 058) increase in the number of employed security officers. It is also important to acknowledge that the private security industry does not only contribute towards the fight against crime but also plays a pivotal role towards alleviating unemployment through the creation of entry level jobs.  The report further states that there are currently about 4200 registered security service providers in South Africa.  Included in this number are small, medium and big companies.

The mushrooming of security companies in South Africa is influenced by among others the fact that there are little or no barriers of entry into the entry, and the fact that capital investment in the business is very low.  Of particular concern is the fact that most of the owners of security companies do not have relevant academic security related qualifications which are often applicable in other professional services such pharmacy, medicine, engineering etc.  This result in a situation where clients receive inferior services from such security service providers since all the know is to sell Security Officers.