The aim of the Airport Security Sector is to protect passengers, airport staff, and planes, all of which use airports, from crimes, threats, and malicious or accidental harm. Large concentration of people in airports and on planes makes the operation of the security in airports all the more necessary. If an act of vandalism, sabotage, or terrorism occurs in the airport, the destruction of people can reach colossal proportions. Aviation security in airports is also needed to prevent smuggling of people, drugs, and cultural or antique artefacts. When actions of airport security are successful, chances that illegal items may enter airport or that a dangerous situation happens there are greatly reduced or totally eliminated. The goal of airport security is, therefore, twofold. Security aims to protect airport from dangerous events and reassures people that they are safe and will reach their destinations in peace.
Several organizations carry responsibilities for airport security in the United Kingdom. One of them is the Department for Transport, which is the government department taking care of the English transport network. The DfT is run by the Secretary of State for Transport. The second organization responsible for security regulations in the UK is the Civil Aviation Authority. To provide safety in airports in the country, the Department for Transport has long been conducting a special scheme called Multi Agency Threat and Risk Assessment.
The tool that Airport Security Guards use to detect forbidden items on passengers’ bodies in all 44 airports of the United Kingdom is a millimetre wave scanner. This whole-body imaging machine uses electromagnetic radiation to reveal if any items are hidden underneath people’s clothes without showing bodies themselves. There are two types of the millimetre wave scanner: active and passive. The former directs wave energy at a person and then interprets the reflected energy. The latter uses radiation emitted from the human body together with ambient radiation to create images.
Airport Security Guards are the professionals who ensure the safety of people in the airports and on planes. Their most important duty is to do surveillance, which is accomplished with the help of the most technologically developed devices. Among these devices are the following:
With the help of this technology, Airport Security Guards survey not only the airport facilities but also the airport’s surrounding grounds as well. Their task is to detect the presence of any suspicious item and check if it poses any threat or risk to people or the airport itself. Another responsibility of the Airport Security Officers is to identify possible suspicious people and suspicious activities inside and outside the airport. They also check security cameras installed in many places in the facility and regularly patrol the premises. In addition to patrolling, Airport Security Guards keep violators of the public peace in check. Their other duties are centred less around people’s security than their physical well-being. If people faint, Airport Security Guards are expected to perform CPR on them and help them to go out, when they are accidentally locked. People’s conduct is also subjected to scrutiny in airports. Security Guards watch people’s behaviour, preventing intoxicated people from boarding the plane, since they may act disruptively in the air.
Another major responsibility of Airport Security Officers is to do screening. Screening in airports involves asking passengers to go through the X-ray machine and checking whether their clothes cover dangerous, prohibited items disallowed to be brought on board. Apart from people and their garments, passengers’ baggage also gets screened. The screening of passenger’s luggage is called HBS; that is, Hold Baggage Screening. In some countries, technological security check is of two types:
These systems or X-Ray machines help to ascertain that people’s suitcases and begs do not contain such forbidden items as guns, knives, and explosives that can easily be used to hijack a plane or to harm people on the flight or in the airport. If the system or X-Ray identify a suspicious item in a passenger’s suitcase or bag, the luggage will immediately be sent to the manual inspection.
Airport Security Guards have a prerogative to arrest people disturbing the peace of others. In those cases when passengers’ behaviour is troublesome, Airport Security Officers can enforce laws and apply coercive measures to trouble-makers. Depending on a country and its laws, Airport Security Guards can be armed; or they carry only screening devices and ask for help from police, when more drastic measures are required.
An average salary for the Airport Security Officer is £11.35 per hour. On bank holidays, they are paid double-time. The benefits of their work also include having tram and rail discounts, Employee Assistance Programme, and Tax-Free shopping.
If you want to become an Airport Security Officer, you need to meet certain requirements. Among them are the following qualifications:
The X-Ray Screening test is used to evaluate candidates for airport security jobs. You will need to recognize objects on a screen and be able to quickly differentiate between dangerous items and harmless one. Because some objects may be crowded together and overlap, you need to be able to mentally rotate images and separate them in your mind's eye. The test is timed, so it is important that you can perform these complex mental tasks with speed. Practising is key to mastering the X-Ray Screening Test used for pre-employment screening at UK airports.
JobTestPrep has brought its simulations of the official X-Ray Test to perfection. Our tests are timed, thus giving you an opportunity to practise in the real time. Our images are very vivid and exactly resemble those images that you will see on your official pre-employment assessment. If you practise with our X-Ray tests, you will learn how to rotate images mentally, how to recognize a shape of an object that is superimposed by another item, and how to identify forbidden objects such as bottles, knives, guns, and explosive devices at a flick of a second.
Most of the employers do not require job candidates to have a degree. As a rule, a high-school diploma or GED are sufficient to be considered for a position of the Airport Security Officer. Yet if you want to increase your chances of being hired, you may consider taking courses in criminal justice or criminology. These courses may also help you advance in your career, after you have been employed as an Airport Security Guard.
If, after having worked as an Airport Security Guard for a while, you continue displaying professional competence and good work ethics, you may be given the following options to advance your career:
Working in the role of the Airport Security Officer will look good on your résumé, also if you decide to change your career and become a police officer or a border services officer.
The work of Airport Security Guards is highly important and responsible, because on their vigilance depend lives and safety of people. The major personality traits of the Airport Security Officer are listed below:
JobTestPrep puts a lot of effort into making exact simulations of those tests that job candidates will meet during their pre-hire assessment. Our high-quality PrepPack™ contains the Numerical, Verbal, and Logical Reasoning Tests, and Personality Assessment that will help you sail through your examination with confidence. Interview materials also added to our PrepPack™ will help you impress recruiters during your face-to-face interview with them. Purchase our resources and start working as an Airport Security Officer, protecting the lives of people and maintaining general safety in the airport of your country.