Gavin de Becker’s Vision of Elite Private Security
The most prestigious private security firm in the United States was founded on a unique vision of value to its prominent clients, but which also has some less obvious downsides.
Wealthy and prominent people, as well as their families, associates, and organizations, can become targets for theft, extortion, kidnapping, stalking, or violence. While keeping a low profile or relying on police agencies can mitigate these risks, hiring private security promises to eliminate them outright. It also makes private security a route to influence, since it requires close coordination with wealthy and prominent people. Gavin de Becker and Associates (GDBA) is a private security firm based in Los Angeles. Founded in 1978 by Gavin de Becker, who remains the company’s chairman today, it is arguably the most prestigious private security firm in the world. The company’s reported present and former clients include Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, many celebrities like Madonna and Tom Hanks, and even the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.1