Business Security Certificate

Program Outline

Learn new job skills to help improve your security knowledge for your current position, or help improve the level of protection of your enterprise by better understanding the essentials of business and cyber security. Penn Foster Career School’s Business Security Certificate Program will teach you the essentials of criminal justice, loss prevention, computer-based crime, and security management.

Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 7® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running OS X® or later, and an email account to participate in and complete your program.

Note: Graduates of this program also earn 21 college credits toward an A.S. degree in Criminal Justice at Penn Foster College.

This outline covers all the courses required for your study-at-home certificate program. You complete the following courses in the order indicated:

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal
The Business Security Certificate program aims to improve students' knowledge of security in a current position or be able to improve the level of protection of an enterprise by understanding the essentials of business security.

Program Outcomes
Upon completion of the program, students will be able to...

  • Discuss the purpose of the various parts of the criminal justice system at the local, state and federal level and individuals' involvement as citizens and actors, and how that involvement affects the system
  • Discuss the history and development of the private security field to the present day; the liability and the relationship between public and private security; prevention, loss control, investigation; and trends in security and security systems
  • Explain the basics of substantive criminal law, which establishes and defines principles, rights, and limitations, and the penal laws that govern society
  • Demonstrate understanding of the distinctions between crimes of violence and property-based crimes, what constitutes white collar crime, how white collar criminal activity often causes more damage to society than do crimes of violence, the laws involved in prosecuting white collar crimes, as well as how to detect and to gather evidence of white collar crimes
  • Demonstrate understanding of the issues involved in security management across disciplines and around the world, including industrial security in light of business concerns, the legal aspects of security management and prevention, the specific security applications and the investigational intelligence gathering used to assess security systems



Introduction to Criminal Justice
Begin your study of the exciting field of criminal justice.


  • Discuss the nature of crime and how it affects society
  • Explain the history, organization, role, and function of policing, as well as its issues
  • Identify the various roles of the judicial process and the stages of a trial
  • Describe the role that correctional institutions have fulfilled, their design, the people who live there, and the difficulties encountered when leaving the structured environment of prison
  • Recognize how juvenile justice and terrorism impact criminal justice in the United States

Additional Course Material
Textbook: Introduction to Criminal Justice

Introduction to Private Security
Private security departments must focus on the delivery of competent service to organizations and communities.


  • Compare private security to public law enforcement.
  • Describe how the private security industry is regulated.
  • Identify when a private security officer may make an arrest.
  • Identify when the use of force and deadly force are justifiable.

Additional Course Material
Textbook: Introduction to Private Security

Security and Loss Prevention
This course covers the primary functions of private security personnel.


  • Use proven strategies to prevent and reduce loss that normally results from crime, accidents, fire, error, disasters, and mismanagement.
  • Maintain order on private property.
  • Protect people and property against crimes and disasters.

Additional Course Material
Textbook: Security and Loss Prevention: An Introduction

Criminal Law
Criminal law involves prosecution by the government of a person for an act that has been classified as a crime.


  • Understand the basics of substantive criminal law and procedural criminal law.
  • Describe the principles of criminal responsibility and how crimes are classified.
  • Find out how crimes are classified and the origins of criminal law.

Additional Course Material
Textbook: Principles of Criminal Law

Security: Computer-Based Crime
Cyberspace is an environment favorable to committing some traditional crimes and to creating new ones.


  • Classify computer crimes in terms of targets, means, and incidentals.
  • Describe the processing of information at the scene, including taking pictures, making sketches, looking for trace evidence, locating evidence, and bagging and tagging.

Additional Course Material
Textbook: Computer Forensics and Cyber Crime

White Collar Crime
White collar crime is a nonviolent, financially motivated crime committed for monetary gain. It is very different from other crimes, not only in the way the offenders are treated but also in the way it impacts society as a whole.


  • Learn the distinctions between crimes of violence and property-based crimes.
  • Study what constitutes white collar crime.
  • Discover how this type of criminal activity often causes more damage to society than crimes of violence do.
  • Learn how to detect and gather evidence for white collar crimes.
  • Understand the laws involved in prosecuting such crimes.
  • Learn about corporate crime and political crime.

Additional Course Material
Textbook: White-Collar Crime: The Essentials

Security Management
This course examines the range of issues involved in security management, across disciplines and around the world.


  • Consider industrial security in light of business concerns.
  • Explore present day technology issues and emergency management dilemmas.
  • Demonstrate lawful approaches to investigations and understanding of current trends in the security industry.

Additional Course Material
Textbook: Security Supervision and Management


Online Library and Librarian
Students in Penn Foster Career School have access to an online library for use during their studies. Students can use this library to do the required research in the courses they complete or can use it for general reference and links to valuable resources. The library contains helpful research assistance, articles, databases, books, and Web links. A librarian is available to answer questions on general research-related topics via email and to assist students in research activities during their studies with Penn Foster Career School International.

We reserve the right to change program content and materials when it becomes necessary.

A High School Diploma or GED is required to enroll in this program.

Microsoft and Windows are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.

Apple, Mac, and OS X are trademarks of Apple, Inc. registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.

If you wish to receive credit for previous course work, contact the school you attended and ask that your official transcripts be forwarded to Penn Foster Career School for evaluation. All previous college work must have been completed with a grade of "C" or better, and as much as 75% of the required credits may be transferred. We will also credit your tuition for all the courses that are acceptable.