Company Profile
Columbia Security Service & Systems, Inc.

Setting the Standard, Since 1973


Founded by CEO Doug Harvey in 1973, Columbia Security (COLSEC) was created as a professional patrol service to help thwart ever increasing criminal activity.

A Longview police officer at the time, Doug (having worked many security assignments while in college) recognized that the work load of law enforcement precluded providing any form of consistent crime prevention. So, on his 27th birthday, Doug Harvey initiated the first night of crime prevention patrol which has continued uninterrupted ever since.

In time, many other security-related programs* have been added in addition to the patrol service, establishing COLSEC as a full service company.

COLSEC has established a reputation for attracting and retaining above average personnel and for maintaining top notch equipment. This, coupled with sustaining high standards for appearance and performance, has allowed COLSEC to set a standard that very few competitors can emulate.


*Please review services section of this web site.


Officer Training


In order to provide effective protective services, security officers today must be able to deal with a myriad of complex and stringent responsibilities.  From patrol procedures and crime prevention techniques to understanding the intricacies criminal and civil law, modern security officers are a far cry from night watchmen in the days of old.

In addition, security officers now need to be attuned to proper procedural and psychological training to deal with people in all frames of mind, handling emergency situations and even life saving skills.

All in all, professionalism is the by-word for all successful security officers.  Recognizing this, Columbia Security Services has developed a training curriculum designed to not only achieve this goal, but to also maintain top levels of proficiency through yearly refreshers and updates.


Each new applicant must complete initial pre-hire training as prescribed by the states of Washington (8 hours) and Oregon (where applicable, 12 hours).  The topics of study are dictated by each state and the applicant must successfully pass a written exam before employment can be offered.  Essentially, these state-mandated programs provide new officer candidates with a thumb-nail overview of general duties and responsibilities in preparation for a role in the security profession. 

Once hired, a new officer can spend several weeks of one-on-one “in-service” orientation and performance training with certified officers.  The exact amount of time each officer will spend is dependent on both background experience plus the complexity of the assignments.


New officers must complete a 90-day “probation period” during which each officer is rated on performance, attendance and development of skills as work assignments are completed.  Also, within this 90-day period, each officer is afforded the opportunity to complete the “basic training” curriculum which consists of the following topics:

  • Introduction to Asset Protection and Security

  • Human and Public Relations

  • Report Writing

  • Communications

  • Patrols & Fixed Posts

  • Physical Security and Crime Prevention

  • Fire Protection and Life Safety

  • Criminal Law and Criminal Liability

  • Civil Law and Civil Liability

  • Ethics, Deportment and Professional Conduct

  • Investigations

  • Emergency Situations

Proficiency in each subject is tested and scored.  Remedial retraining is administered for any topic for which a score of less than 80% is achieved.


At the end of the 90-day probationary period, satisfactory performance evaluations, coupled with mastery of the Basic Training course will propel the new officer to permanent status with a step in pay grade.


Security officers with proven performance records are eligible for patrol, courier or fixed post supervisory positions with Columbia Security Services when available.  Since good leadership skills must be learned, it is important to provide these officers with the ‘tools’ necessary to successfully complete the transition to this new realm of responsibility.

The specific curriculum has been established as follows:

  • Leadership Principles

  • Supervisor Communication

  • Customer Service as a Security Function

  • Handling Multiple Priorities

  • Security’s Role in Reducing Business Risk

  • Emergency Preparedness and Crisis Management

  • Sexual Harassment

  • Professional Standards

Officers with proven supervisory and management techniques can still benefit from this training series.  It is Columbia Security’s philosophy that regardless of what previous experience someone may or may not have, it is important to the organization that all supervisors are uniformly trained to uniformly lead.


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