Sweden’s Head of Security: Hard Rock Cafe
Case study introduction
Othello is head of the security team at the Hard Rock Café in Gothenburg, Sweden. His team are employed by the Gothia Protection Group who provide specialist security services, normally in the way of body guards or private escorts. However, the venue in Gothenburg is in the minority amongst the Hard Rock Cafés, expanding its services at the weekend to become a night club in addition to normal hours. As such, it requires a specialist team to oversee the security.
How did you hear about body worn cameras?
“I remember seeing them being used by some other security guards and watching people calm down because of the camera. I thought “I want one of those!” So I convinced the owners of the Hard Rock Café that it was in their interest to invest in these cameras, because then they can be certain that we are doing a fair and good job.
What objectives were you trying to achieve with our body cameras?
“I feel it’s a win-win for everybody, both my staff wearing the cameras and the public. Especially for my staff though because in Sweden, bouncers and security guards often have a bad reputation. We have special privileges which mean we can exercise the right to make an arrest. Unfortunately, a very small number of people abuse these privileges which is why the public can be sceptical of us.
“The RS3-SX body cameras are a great way of increasing the transparency of our work. Especially with the sound quality, I have to say, you get a great sound uptake from the camera. Lots of times when situations have escalated to the point of violence in the past, the perpetrator gives another story to what actually happened. But now we don’t have to deal with that anymore."
“Also, it stops situations getting to the point of violence. Most of the time people notice it without me having to say anything, but sometimes just by pointing at the display they can see themselves and they realise they are being filmed. And they want to get away with what they are doing so normally they just leave once they see the camera. “It’s better than having a colleague next to you. A colleague can lie. Having the RS3-SX is like having an unbiased colleague who speaks the truth and nothing but the truth."
Have the cameras helped?
“Yes. 9 times out of 10 we do our job and there are no problems. Sometimes it would end with violence and the police making an arrest. The people who had been removed from the Hard Rock Café will call up the next day and complain about the bouncers, blaming them for what happened. But now we can invite them in to watch the video footage of what actually happened and they leave without making a fuss!"