Private security industry
marks 50 years
The private security industry which marks 50 years
was born on May 15, 1956 when two enterprising school leavers, Fuard
Uduman and Newton Dassanayake, started the Pettah Watchmen Service
‘with two guards clad in khaki coats and armed with torches,
batons and whistles to cover Second Cross Street.’
The Industrial Security Foundation (ISF), in a statement to mark
the occasion, said since then private security has expanded steadily
and now makes a significant contribution to the national economy.
In recent years the demand for security by virtually all organizations
of the private as well as the state sector including schools, hospitals
and vital utilities has increased with security threats disrupting
Law enforcement agencies of the state have had their hands full
and private security assumed a new dimension necessitating new training
programs and technology to identify and take counter measures against
acts of terrorism.
More than 70,000 are employed by 250 registered security providing
agencies while a large number of unregistered agencies employ as
It was in the troubled background of the eighties that a few dedicated
security professionals from the established private security agencies
of the time and distinguished retired senior officers of the Police
and the Armed Services discussed the urgent need to make commercial
and industrial security (Private Security) a professionalized service
that could be an asset to industry and of assistance to the Police.
Out of these deliberations in 1992 was born the Industrial Security
Foundation of Sri Lanka.
The ISF Sri Lanka, incorporated by Act No. 51 of 1999 is the only
statutory body dedicated to the improvement of the competence and
efficiency of private security.
“Being a non-profit organization with limited income generating
activities the commemoration events planned by the Foundation will
not be extravagant but meaningful to those engaged in security with
immeasurable direct and indirect benefits to the national economy
and national security,” the statement said .
The series of events that have been planned for the golden anniversary
year will include a seminar for the rank and file; a seminar at
corporate level; a national seminar on the security of banking/financial
institutions with eminent resource personnel local and foreign;
and an exhibition of hi-tech security devices.