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Certified Protection Officer

Looking for a career where you are always in demand? Certified Protection Officers (CPOs) enjoy ample employment opportunities and long-term job security. In this course, offered by Smart Horizons Career Online High School, you will master the skills you need to obtain certification as a protection officer and gain employment in this popular field. As you prepare for your career as a protection officer or security guard, you will learn about report writing, physical security, emergency procedures, workplace violence, traffic control, fire prevention, use of force, and operational risk management. The course is conducted entirely online and gives you the opportunity to learn at your own pace. Throughout, you will have the support of an experienced, enthusiastic teacher who is committed to your success.

When you complete the course, you will earn a self-study Certified Protection Officer (CPO) certificate that meets the academic requirements for obtaining the CPO credential. Get started today, and prepare yourself to enter this exciting career field!

6 Months / 50 Course Hrs
Open enrollment

Offered in Partnership with your Preferred School

Aims Community College

Why this school? It's been chosen based on your location or if you've visited this school's website. Change School

Learning Method


Self-Paced. Study on your own schedule

Contact Us for additional information

Certified Protection Officer

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Details + Objectives

Course Code: GES227

What You Will Learn
  • Understand fundamental security guard tasks including patrol, fire prevention and suppression, providing first aid, writing reports, and conducting public relations
  • Know techniques and procedures for improving memory and observation skills, taking effective notes, and writing reports
  • Know techniques and procedures for controlling access to an area of interest
  • Understand how to gather, protect, and present evidence including witness testimony
  • Understand basic safety requirements including advanced first aid procedures
  • Understand threats posed by bombs and other explosives
  • Describe alarm system components and operation
  • Define common criminal offenses, legal jurisdictions, and the powers of a certified protection officer
  • Understand central alarm station dispatch operations, alarm system fundamentals, and detection technology
  • Know investigation techniques including foundations for surveillance and defensive tactics
How the course is taught
  • Self-paced, online course
  • 6 months to complete
  • Open enrollment, begin anytime
  • 50 course hours
How you will benefit
  • Prepare yourself for a successful career as a certified protections officer
  • Learn how to efficiently and professionally react to a myriad of high intensity situations
  • Earn a self-study Certified Protection Officer (CPO) certificate that meets the academic requirements for obtaining the CPO credential
  • Develop a thorough understanding of what to expect while working in the industry


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Learn the foundations needed to thrive on the job such as the theories of asset protection, role of the professional protection officer, effective communication strategies, and the role and requirements of a protection officer.

Crime Prevention and Physical Security

Learn about different types of crime prevention and the physical security measures you could be required to take. Understand alarm systems, access controls, and detection technology.

Fire and Information Protection

Understand how to prevent, detect, and respond to emergency situations. Discuss occupational safety and health hazards, as well as how to protection sensitive information and counterintelligence.

Violence and Threat Management

Be able to identify risk, threats, and deviance in the workplace. Understand how to respond in emergency situations.

Investigations and Legalities

Master the concepts and practices behind secure investigations. Discuss proper techniques for crime scenes, interviews, statements, surveillance, report writing, as well as the legal aspects of security.

Officer Safety and Relations with Others

Complete the course by learning about the proper tactics of fore, defensive tactics, industrial hazards, human relations in a global environment, community relations, and ethics.

  1. Introduction
    1. Introduction
    2. Protection Office Code of Ethics
  2. Foundations
    1. Concepts and Theories of Asset Protection
    2. The Evolution of Asset Protection and Security
    3. Role of the Professional Protection Officer
    4. The Protection Officer as a Leader
    5. Career Planning for Protection Professionals
  3. Communications
    1. Effective Communications
    2. Security Awareness
    3. Central Alarm Stations and Dispatch Operations
  4. Protection Officer Functions
    1. Automation in Protection Operations
    2. Patrol Principles
    3. Traffic Control
    4. Crowd Management and Special Event Planning
  5. Crime Prevention and Physical Security
    1. Environmental Crime Control
    2. Physical Security Concepts and Applications
    3. Alarm System Fundamentals
    4. Access Control
    5. Detection Technology
  6. Safety Fire Protection
    1. Fire Prevention, Detection, and Response
    2. Occupational Safety and Health and the Protection Officer
    3. An All Hazards Approach to Hazardous Materials
    4. Information Protection
    5. Information Security and Counterintelligence
  7. Deviance, Crime, and Violence
    1. Workplace Crime and Deviance
    2. Substance Abuse
    3. Workplace Violence
    4. Crisis Intervention
    5. Strikes, Lockouts, and Labor Relations
  8. Risk and Threat Management
    1. Security Risk Management
    2. Emergency Planning
    3. Terrorism
    4. Antiterrorism and VIP Protection
  9. Investigations
    1. Investigations: Concepts and Practices for Security Professionals
    2. Crime and Incident Scene Procedures
    3. Interviewing and Statements
    4. Foundations for Surveillance
    5. Report Writing and Field Notes
  10. Legal Aspects of Security
    1. Legal Aspects of Security
  11. Officer Safety and Use of Force
    1. Use of Force
    2. Defensive Tactics and Officer Safety
    3. Industrial Hazards, Safety, and the Security Patrol Officer
    4. Apprehension and Detention Procedures
  12. Relations With Others
    1. Human Relations in a Global Environment
    2. Public Relations
    3. Community Relations: Making Strategy Come Alive
    4. Networking and the Liaison Function
    5. Ethics and Professionalism
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Instructors & Support

Darlene Lawrence

Darlene Lawrence is an academic coach and childcare and education instructor with five years of experience. She holds a bachelor's degree in business administration and a master's degree in teaching.




A high school diploma or GED is a prerequisite for this course. If you do not have a high school diploma or GED, you may want to consider taking the High School Diploma With Certified Protection Officer Training course.


Hardware Requirements:

  • This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac.
  • You must have speakers or headphones.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 8 or later.
  • Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.


  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
Instructional Materials

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.


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Can I register for a course if I am an international student?

Yes, ed2go courses are completely online. However, keep in mind that not all certifying bodies or industry-specific certifications are recognized internationally. Please review your country's regulations prior to enrolling in courses that prepare for certification.

Does this course prepare for a certification?

When you complete the course, you will earn a self-study Certified Protection Officer (CPO) certificate that meets the academic requirements for obtaining the CPO credential.

When can I start the course?

This course is open enrollment, so you can register and start the course as soon as you are ready. Access to your course can take 24-48 business hours.

How long does it take to complete this course?

This course is self-paced and open enrollment, so you can start when you want and finish at your own pace. When you register, you'll receive six (6) months to complete the course.

What if I don't have enough time to complete my course within the time frame provided?

The time allotted for course completion has been calculated based on the number of course hours. However, if you are unable to complete the course, contact your Student Advisor to help you work out a suitable completion date. Please note that an extension fee may be charged.

What kind of support will I receive?

You may be assigned with an instructor or team of industry experts for one-on-one course interaction. Your support will be available (via e-mail) to answer any questions you may have and to provide feedback on your performance. All of our instructors are successful working professionals in the fields in which they teach. You will be assigned to an Advisor for academic support.

What happens when I complete the course?

Upon successful completion of the course, you will be awarded a Certificate of Completion.

Am I guaranteed a job?

This course will provide you with the skills you need to obtain an entry-level position in most cases. Potential students should always do research on the job market in their area before registering.

Can I get financial assistance?

This course is non-credit, so it does not qualify for federal aid, FAFSA and Pell Grant. In some states, vocational rehab or workforce development boards will pay for qualified students to take our courses. Additionally, some students may qualify for financial assistance when they enroll, if they meet certain requirements. Financing is available from select schools. Learn more:

How can I get more information about this course?

If you have questions that are not answered on our website, representatives are available via LIVE chat. You can also call us at 1-877-221-5151 during regular business hours to have your questions promptly answered. If you are visiting us during non-business hours, please send us a question using the "Contact Us" form.

What if I need help with my coursework?

An instructor will be available through email or phone. If you leave a message for the instructor, the instructor will respond to you within 24 business hours.

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About Certification

International Foundation for Protection Officers (IFPO)

The International Foundation for Protection Officers (IFPO) has members and students in more than 50 countries around the globe, and offers a diverse array of opportunities for security officer professional development. It is committed to improving job performance of security officers by developing and promoting training and educational standards, holding seminars and education projects, and establishing ethics regulations. The IFPO has fostered greater professionalism in the security field, and courses they have certified are comprehensive and high-quality.