bodyguard (or close protection officer) is a type of security guard or government law enforcement officer or soldier who protects a person or people — usually high-ranking public officials or officers, wealthy people, and celebrities — from danger: generally theft, assault, kidnapping, assassination, harassment, loss of confidential information, threats, or other criminal offences. The group of personnel who protect a VIP are often referred to as the VIP's security detail.
Most important public figures such as heads of state, heads of government, and governors are protected by several bodyguards or by a team of bodyguards from an agency, security forces, or police forces (e.g., in the U.S., the United States Secret Service or the State Department's Diplomatic Security Service). In most countries where the Head of state is and have always been also their military leader, the leader's bodyguards have traditionally been Royal Guards, Republican Guards and other elite military units. Less-important public figures, or those with lower risk profiles, may be accompanied by a single bodyguard who doubles as a driver. A number of high-profile celebrities and CEOs also use bodyguards. In some countries or regions (e.g., in Latin America), wealthy people may have a bodyguard when they travel. In some cases, the security personnel utilize a bulletproof vehicle, which protects them and the VIP.