Surveillance & Surveillance Detection (SD)

The methods used by criminals, terrorist groups or individuals as they go about their
intelligence collection activities (surveillance).
Course includes a live field exercise.

This course is available for On-Site Training only. We will bring this course to your agency or company.
Contact Don Dickson, On-Site Training Manager at (301) 455-5633 or

About this course

This course is designed to thoroughly present the fundamentals of physical (human) surveillance and surveillance detection, the key elements for anti-terrorism and crime prevention. The ability to understand the mechanics of conducting effective surveillance and defensive surveillance detection is crucial to effective law enforcement, counterterrorism and facility or personal protection. This course is intended to be a thorough introduction to the principals of physical (human) surveillance.

This course explores various methods used to detect physical (human) surveillance as opposed to detection of technical surveillance (electronic). It is designed to examine the methods used by criminals and terrorist groups or individuals as they go about their intelligence collection activities (surveillance). It is not intended to make the student a trained surveillant or counter surveillant. That takes time and guided practice.

What you will learn

Students will learn the different types of surveillance; equipment used to enhance physical surveillance; and some regulatory issues. The Information will prepare the student to recognize hostile/adversarial surveillance through various techniques.

Upon completion of the course, the student will:
  • Explain how terrorists and criminals gathers intelligence about their targets
  • Be able to participate in supervised non-hostile surveillance exercises used to train field personnel in the fields of law enforcement, counterterrorism, protection and intelligence operations
  • Be able to describe various surveillance detection and counter surveillance methods
  • Be able to analyze what hostile surveillance looks like and how to detect its presence
  • Improve their physical surveillance abilities
  • Understand physical surveillance techniques, types, concepts and uses
  • Recognize surveillance detection and counter surveillance efforts
  • Conceptually, plan a surveillance and surveillance operation
  • Be able to employ basic surveillance detection methods
  • Participate, with supervision, in non-hostile surveillance
  • Analyze qualities & characteristics of good physical surveillants

Who should attend

  • Federal, state, university/college and local security, facility security officers (FSO), law enforcement and security personnel, detectives and investigators from top managers to patrol level
  • Contractor security directors and staff
  • Executive protection practitioners and security specialists
  • Facility security system planners and designers
  • First responders (Fire, Medical, SWAT)

Course agenda

Over a 4-day period workshop participants will explore the following broad topics via a combination of lecture, discussion, case studies, field exercise and practical exercises:
  • The Hostile Planning Cycle
  • Warning Signs
  • Types of Surveillance
  • Tools & Equipment for Physical Surveillance and SD
  • How Surveillants Behave
  • Surveillance Planning
  • Observation Factors & Skills
  • Surveillance Errors
  • Surveillance Detection Rationale
  • Surveillance Detection Routes
Surveillance Detection