By Doc Rogers
EP Assessment in Asian Countries
Many Western companies and affluent individuals are venturing out to Asia in search of new business opportunities. As professional bodyguards traveling with clients going to Asia, we may be required to obtain the services of indigenous EP and security personnel. This could include additional bodyguards, hall and wall staff and /or security drivers. It should be the responsibility of the advance team to setup interviews to ensure that the indigenous personnel are physically capable of performing their essential duties and speak good English. Below is an assortment of capabilities and what to expect from the general EP and security population within the countries listed.
CHINA – EP agents in Beijing and Shanghai employ professional tactics; they are usually very well trained, organized and disciplined. Although EP is not armed, their equipment is in immaculate condition. As a whole EP personnel in Beijing and Shanghai are not susceptible to bribery and have high morale. The predominant language spoken by EP personnel is basically Mandarin in the north and Cantonese in the south, however only 50 percent of the personnel on local EP teams speak English.
INDIA – Generally EP agents in India employ tactics that are marginally effective, there are a few that handle themselves with professionalism and effectiveness but as a whole EP standards are often lower than internationally acceptable. As a rule the EP personnel are not armed and the equipment they do utilize suffers from being worn. EP tactics are centered on being high-profile and teams do not try to blend into the local populace. Personnel are not susceptible to bribery and have high morale. The predominant language spoken by EP personnel is Hindi and English and most personnel have good English capabilities in India.
INDONESIA – EP in Jakarta is made up of trained and equipped personnel; however capabilities still lag behind advance world levels. There is normally a lack of integrated SOPs and this impedes operational control and coordination on assignments. Frequently EP agents do not work together, in concert, as a team. Emphasis is placed on counter-offensive methods with unsound contingency planning. Some personnel are susceptible to bribery, but as a whole have high morale. Only work with trusted vetted EP and security driver contractors in Indonesia. The predominant language spoken by EP personnel is Bahasa Indonesian and English and most EP personnel have good English capabilities in Jakarta.
JAPAN – EP agents and security personnel in Japan have established high standards and core competency levels; supplying services with knowledge, guidelines and tools to accomplish the mission. As a rule extensive preparation and reconnaissance is made with high levels of effort and prevention is a high priority. Personnel are not armed and the equipment used is well-maintained. EP administrative personnel are provided to ensure direction of activities and further strengthen its effective delivery. The predominant language spoken by EP personnel is Japanese. Approximately 40 percent of EP personnel speak English in Japan.
MALAYSIA – EP agents in Malaysia lack a high degree of EP technical sophistication. Makeup, methods and effectiveness depend primarily on high-profile tactics and brute force. EP members are locally recruited from the military and LEO circles and rely on military and police skills, opposed to any from of specific EP strategy. The methods utilized may deter threats from low-level thieves and local thugs, but from a public relation standpoint it is considered unprofessional and inefficient. They are highly organized and their equipment suffers from being worn. Some personnel are susceptible to bribery due to low pay and poor morale. Only use trusted and vetted contractors for any EP or security driver services required in Malaysia. The predominant language spoken by EP personnel is Bahasa Malaysia (Malay). Approximately 60 percent of EP personnel speak English.
PAKISTAN – Credible EP capabilities do exist in Pakistan, however the majority of personnel generally react to threats against principals rather than focus efforts to prevent and deter threats before they can be carried out. Hard-armored vehicles are in limited supply and are generally not available on short-notice. High-levels of EP focus and coordination is maintained by a handful of professionals with appropriate measures to protect against Islamic militant threats. There are only a few EP resources in Pakistan that have a high level of morale and handle themselves with professionalism and effectiveness. Some EP personnel in the country are incompetent and susceptible to bribery due to low pay and poor treatment by the employer. The predominant language spoken by EP personnel is Urdu. Approximately 75 percent of EP personnel speak English in Karachi and Islamabad.
PHILIPPINES – EP capabilities in the Philippines are deficient, because the majority of personnel are recruited locally from undisciplined soldiers and police. There is a limited amount of firms that provide Western executive protection based on principles of prevention and effective low-profile protective coverage. Most EP teams work in large groups and prefer high-profile operations. A typical EP detail in the Philippines consist of four to six well-armed individuals, who are mission oriented to show force and dominate principal’s environment but with little regard for advance work or logistics. Teams favor multi-vehicle convoys in high-profile SUVs. Some indigenous EP agents may be susceptible to bribery due to low pay. The predominant language spoken is Tagalog and approximately 80 percent of EP personnel speak English fluently in the Philippines.
When looking for EP support and security drivers in Asia look for firms with long track records of providing world-class services and sound practices necessary for unity of effort and high tempo EP operations that you desire for your principal. Keep safe and God Speed.