The Evolution of Security

the evolution of security

We’ve come a long way throughout history. Some inventions have changed the world for the better and, in recent years, whole industries have been revolutionized with the progression of technology. The evolution of the security industry has benefited greatly due to these advancements. 

With security, there have been several leaps and bounds made in recent years. But before all the fancy gadgets and gizmos, have you ever wondered where the idea of “security” originated?  It’s been said that ever since cavemen had something of value, the need for security was born.  This concept evolved quickly throughout the entire world. 


Ancient Egypt

The first recordings of security being implemented into society was in Egypt when pharaohs would hire private guards for themselves and other high society members.  Valuable people and valuable things needed protection.  Not much has changed since then!

Ancient Greece

The ancient Greeks had their own security advancements. They developed a sophisticated system of security forces to protect essential government officials, as well as the public highways leading into the major cities. They saw a need when these roads were plagued by rogue criminals who would take advantage of travelers coming into town. 

Ancient Rome

Ancient Rome also had recordings of government and wealthy individuals hiring private security for their own protection. Oftentimes, professional soldiers would become mercenaries between the wars when they needed work. It was in about 400 AD that the emperor formed the Varangian Guard, which was a team made up of mostly foreign soldiers. Their main priority was to protect the emperor and his family. 

It’s also believed that the Romans wrote the first book of the law, which was called the  “Twelve Tablets”. This book set out the regulations for law enforcement and security forces. It was also believed that the Praetorian Guard was created at this time, which was the first official police force.

Middle Ages

The Middle Ages and violence went hand and hand. With wars breaking out frequently in the East and West, the highly powerful and wealthy found even more of a need for private protection. 

Japan and China

The Evolution of Security

Both Japan and China worked their way into several regional battles over land and power. These battles were supplied with countless highly trained soldiers that could also double as a private security protection. During these years, the Mongol Hordes were attacking across western China, and in response to these invaders, the Great Wall of China was built. 

In Japan, there was a semi-religious group formed called the Samurai. These warriors were equipped with specific weapons and fighting methods for when they were used for private security. One particular branch of the Samurai force were the Ninja assassins. 


In 1883, former criminal Eugene Vidocq founded a private detective agency in Paris. This inspired other detectives to follow suit and offered a whole other group to help with cases on which police were either unwilling or unable to work. 


England was full of their own advancements as they helped pave the way for security forces and regulations in the towns and villages. After the Magna Carta was signed in 1214 AD by King John of England, this opened up more rights for men under the law. Soon the cities were allowing citizens to participate in fighting crime by legally allowing citizen arrests, and an obligation to fight alongside the sheriffs group if needed. 

Guarded and locked gates, as well as night watches started becoming more popular as well. This added another level of security for the town and villages of this time. 

Modern Europe

Because of new migration through Europe in the 18th century, cities saw a rise in crime rates. They had to find ways to fund the need for security, so by 1737 they used taxes to support a night patrol in London and other various cities. In 1748, a man named Henry Fielding presented the idea of having a permanent force of security guards in each town. 


The United States followed closely behind Europe’s lead. The infamous Pinkerton private security was formed in 1850 along with Brinks and Wells Fargo coming soon after. Henry Ford introduced the idea of commercial security by hiring private guards for his automobile factories, and this caught on with the mining industry as well. Mine owners would hire private security guards to protect their mines from attacks.

The Evolution of Security

When World War II was underway, the U.S. government also focused heavily on private security for various important industries. The Pinkerton Agency is credited for tracking down criminals like Jesse James and the Sundance Kid. They also are responsible for breaking strikes and would spy on union organizers for business owners. It was during this time that their eye logo inspired the term “private eye”

Security Technology

The first major move for security tech came in 1852, when Bostonian Augustus Pope patented the first electromagnetic alarm system. This was set up by securing an electrical circuit around the doors and windows of a home that would trigger an alarm bell if they were opened. In 1857, Edwin Holmes purchased the rights to the invention and created the first electrical alarm system company. 

The Evolution of Security

It’s safe to say that the evolution of security presents a fascinating timeline! From private security at the coal mines to the progression of security systems, safety has become more and more attainable as technology advances and time goes on. Today, we are faced with so many different threats, and it’s important that families, friends, and businesses feel like their biggest assets are protected with the best. 

At GoJoe, we understand the importance of equipping our guards and mobile patrols with industry leading tools and technologies – like our GPS and route management software. This gives our customers the peace of mind knowing their biggest assets are protected by patrolling officers and armed guards. Safety has never been more attainable in our history, and Go Joe promises safety and protection for you and your most valuable assets.

Do you have property or personnel that need protection in the greater Spokane area? Call Go Joe Patrol today to customize a security plan that protects what you value most.

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