Public Security vs. Private Security

Main Difference

Public Security is a service provided by the government of any state to its citizens, state departments, etc. to ensure their protection. Private security is usually a security providing company which serves anyone by providing armed as well as unarmed security services in order to protect them from any threat. Public institutions contain those trained armed officers who are employed by the government and are serving in any public sector. Private Security comprises of the gunners who are hired by private companies or by a single citizen to guard themselves or any of their belongings. Private Security guards are mostly trained to perform any relevant task and are usually permitted by the higher authorities to arrest any crook on the spot and are given the discretion to use their power when required. Private Security guards, on the other hand, have to provide a shield to any person’s assets as well as themselves. Public Security trained its guards with regulated programs of training in which several hard-toiling tests are applied to the officers in order to fully train them so that they may encounter any offense with their best. Guards in Private Security are not full-fledged in terms of power and authority and they have no discretion to ensure the detention of any offender, as they are not given power to use force. The force in Public Security is funded by the government and the guards are always accountable before not only the government but also to the public. As the Private Security guards are not supported by the government, they are not accountable neither to government nor to society. The prime concern of the publicly run security agency is to ensure the safety of the citizens and to serve them as a servant. On the other side, the guards belong to Private Security agency are not asked to become a humanitarian as their first priority is to guard whatever their employer asks or orders them to.

Public Security vs. Private Security — Is There a Difference?

Difference Between Public Security and Private Security

Public Security vs. Private Security

Public Security is a government-run department to provide security; Private Security is run privately

Public Security vs. Private Security

Public Security serves to protect each and everything within a country; Private Security protects only those things which the employer orders to

Public Security vs. Private Security

Public Security has to ensure the protection of every citizen; Private Security has nothing to do with anyone other than the owner

Public Security vs. Private Security

Public Security is accountable to the public; Private Security is only accountable to its owner

Public Security vs. Private Security

Authority and power of public security is much more than that of Private Security whose is limited


Comparison Chart

Public SecurityPrivate Security
Contains every trained armed officer, who is a government employee.Privately own security service of one person who is not a government employee.
Serves to protect each and everything within a country.Only those things which the employer orders to.
Is accountable to the public.Is accountable to the employer.

What is Public Security?

Public Security contains every trained armed officer, who is a government employee. It serves to provide security to the citizens of a country, public departments or institutions, etc. The guards provided by Public Security are given the discretion to arrest any offender if necessary. These gunners are authoritative and can make decisions on their own. Since Public Security is run and funded by the government, the officers are always accountable in front of the higher authorities as well as to the public. Their first and foremost concern and duty is to ensure the protection of the civilians.

What is Private Security?

Private Security is a privately own security service and is neither run nor funded by any government department. The guards usually trained with limited skills of protecting. Their main concern is to protect whatever they are directed or ordered by their owner. As they are not funded or supported by any government institution, they are neither accountable to the government nor to any citizen other than the one who hires them. Privately Security persons are devoid of power and authority to detain anyone and their power is limited.


There are always confusions in the two terms Public and Private security, although people know they are different from each other, they do not really have an idea how they differ from each other and what is the main functions of these two. This article has given a simple explanation to make people understand the functionality of the two terms.