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We found 8,753 Security & Defence Jobs in the UK

The UK security & defence industries are large, covering both public and private sectors. Over half a million people work for defence and security employers in the UK private sector alone, while the defence industry represents approximately 3.5% of UK GDP and is dominated by three large contractors (British Aerospace, GEC-Marconi and GKN). Security & defence jobs can be incredibly varied, ranging from bodyguard and event security to highly skilled security-system technicians and crime scene management.

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Security and defence jobs can be found in many different industries, and therefore duties can vary significantly depending on the position you take. For example, you may work in business-to-business cyber security or be involved in reducing vandalism and crime on an urban estate. Work can often be exciting and rewarding in terms of providing protection and preventing crime. Popular positions in these sectors include:

  • Premises security, such as offices and public buildings
  • Local and international transport, such as airport security
  • Personal protection, such as bodyguards
  • Public sector positions, such as for a defence contractor


What qualifications and experience you will need to work in security & defence will depend largely on the type of role you are seeking to fill. Whilst some positions such as premises security may not require experience nor qualifications, other positions will, such as those involved in cyber security. Experience in the armed forces is often highly valuable for some positions, whilst foreign language and IT skills can be just as desirable for other roles. Valued personal traits include observation skills, discretion, integrity, good communication and the ability to work alone and as part of a team.

With so many different career paths available in security & defence in the UK, long-term career prospects are good. Both public and private sectors are strong, with continued investment resulting in stability and solid growth. Promotion routes exist across all areas, with many learned skills being easily transferable, therefore making it easy to switch security & defence employers and roles.

There are many advantages to working in security & defence, from long-term job stability and security to dynamic working environments and opportunities for travel. Average salaries in defence & security can range anywhere between £20,000 – £35,000 for a prison officer to £25,000 – £40,000 for an IT security coordinator. Other positions may feature day rates, such as for bodyguards and other close protection positions and will often depend on the particular security and defence employer.

Some of the biggest cons to working in security & defence include working outside of normal hours and conditions, the need to travel and of course the sometimes very real dangers involved in protecting someone or something. Some security & defence jobs may involve working alone for long periods of time, as well as the need to deal with sometimes stressful situations. Starting salaries in some positions can be low, whilst other roles may feature a lack of opportunities for professional development, with this heavily reliant on security & defence employers.