The world has become an unstable and unpredictable place since the 9/11 attacks on New York.
The unthinkable changed the way people view their everyday lives and subsequent atrocities have only served to reinforce those fears.
Incidents tend to happen in major cities, with attacks in Manchester, Paris and Madrid in recent years.
But it is not just terrorism that is a threat to individuals and might see the need for close protection.
While large-scale terrorist attacks are outside the remit of a close protection team, there are many instances when having a bodyguard close by would be prudent.
The rise of celebrity culture means there are now many more ‘famous’ people around for the public to interact with.
Social media has only enhanced this as celebrities use the many platforms available to boost their profile.
This comes with its own set of problems as the crazed fan now has far more access to the stars than ever before.
There have been a number of high-profile stalking cases in recent times, with the police bringing a few perpetrators to justice.
However, the victim is vulnerable all the time that their stalker is at large and it is at that point that close protection is needed.
Much of the celebrity culture is based around the nation’s capital and having one or a team of bodyguards will give peace of mind.
It is not only the target that can suffer but quite often his / her family will also be affected.
Having a highly-trained operative at hand will help to deter any overzealous fans.
Dealing with paparazzi
While unwanted attention from a stalker is an obvious threat, the media, and in particular photographers, can be a real intrusion.
This does not just affect celebrities as politicians, royalty and other public figures are often the subject of the long-lens brigade.
‘Paps’, as they are sometimes known, will stop at nothing to get that all-important picture that might sell for thousands of pounds.
They follow the target around incessantly and can strike when least expected – in shops, the park or even the high street.
While taking a photo in public is not illegal, causing an obstruction and harassment certainly is and needs to be dealt with.
Close protection can help to lessen the risk of confrontation, with agents trained in the art of deflecting a problem.
Finding missing persons
Tracing agents are specialists who work in the field of locating missing people.
These could be family members or friends while they can also be used to recover debts and find witnesses for court cases.
Using the latest high-tech equipment and with highly-trained agents, there is an excellent chance of a successful trace in quick time.
Securing a witness in court cases
While tracing agents are an excellent method of finding a witness who may have gone into hiding, close protection may be needed while the witness is waiting for their day in court.
Organised crime groups can fall on the testimony of one individual and so may target someone with evidence that could bring them down.
The majority of high-profile cases are heard in London and so close protection would be necessary to secure a witness.
Putting pressure on witnesses to reverse their testimony with threats of violence is a hazard and it may be that a team of bodyguards is required in some instances.
Large scale events
Staging huge events such as rock concerts, music festivals, or during the political conference season, there is a risk to personal safety of those involved.
Organisers will have their own security but it may not be enough and individuals will rest a bit easier with their own close protection.
The bigger the star, the greater the need for bodyguards and it is not uncommon for the real ‘A-listers’ to travel with their own entourage.
Performing Duties Overseas
While British celebrities, politicians or those conducting high-stakes business may opt to take a bodyguard overseas, the same applies when foreign dignitaries visit London.
Terrorists have attacked randomly in the capital in the past two decades and it pays to be cautious, even when the threat level is lower than it has been.
The current conflict in Ukraine has heightened the need for politicians and high-ranking military personnel to reconsider their security.
The Covid-19 pandemic has rocked the world for more than two years.
And there have been a few ugly scenes as anti-vaxxers clashed with police.
The most obvious need for close protection came with the harassment of Professor Chris Whitty in a London park.
Two thugs thought it was their right to confront the man who had led the country’s defence again an unseen enemy.
The presence of a bodyguard would have made them think twice about committing the crime.