Secured by Design explained

Wed 28 Sep 2016

Nicola Harrison, General Manager of Bereco, de-mystifies Secured by Design.

1. Q. What is Secured by Design?

A. It is a police initiative that aims to improve the security of new and existing homes in the UK. Established in 1989, the initiative was developed to improve overall security in both the design of the properties and through the use of enhanced security products in their construction.

2. Q. I know we need to comply on our development, so how do I ensure windows and doors comply with Secured by Design?

A. Firstly, windows and doors need to be independently tested by a UKAS accredited test house to meet the requirements of the security test PAS24:2012 or PAS24:2016. Secondly, your window and door supplier must be a Secured by Design product licence holder – this means both the products and their production are third party certified and regularly audited to ensure specifications as manufactured continue to be as tested. Always check your supplier can provide a Secured by Design licence number and certificate.

3. Q. How does the PAS24 test ensure my windows and doors are secure?

A. A series of tests is carried out under the PAS24 test regime: 

  1. a manipulation test using small tools such as paint scrapers and screwdrivers to attack the product
  2. a glazing removal test using chisels to attack the glazing infill in an attempt to remove the glass
  3. and mechanical loading and impact resistance tests with impact  imposed on the door hinges, locking system and to the body of the door leaf or opener of the window in an attempt to gain entry.  


For windows and doors to pass this rigorous testing regime, enhanced security features are necessary, such as:

  1. robust frame sections
  2. TS007 compliant door cylinders
  3. laminated security glass to BS EN 356:2000 P1A on easily accessible windows with non-key locking hardware and external doors
  4. and TS003 compliant door chains.


4. Q. I have heard I have to have laminated glass in all my windows and doors to comply with SBD, is that correct?

A. The specification of glazing for your property will ultimately come down to your Architectural Liaison Officer (ALO). You should always check with them whether you do in fact need it. Being clear on requirements such as these will ensure you don’t overspecify. There is no specific requirement to install laminated glazing on the inner or outer face of a double glazed unit. The only absolute glazing requirement for windows and doors under Secured by Design is that any window that is easily accessible and has non-key locking hardware or is within 400mm of a door, and any external door with glazing, must have BS EN356:2000 compliant glass to a minimum of P1A.

5. Q. How do I know if my supplier is using P1A Glass?

A. Check your paperwork. It will specify a security rating on the glass – and don’t hesitate to check up if you are unsure. Simply ask your supplier to provide the Declaration of Performance on the glazing they are using.

6. Q. I’ve heard about the new Part Q too. Does my development also now comply with Secured By Design if I comply with Part Q?

A.  No, Part Q is only concerned with the security of easily accessible doors and windows, where your building inspector will demand testing to prove they are compliant with the requirements of PAS24:2012 or PAS24:2016. Secured by Design certification on your development covers not only having enhanced security windows and doors but many other elements that add to the overall security such as the design and layout of the property, car parking and lighting and the physical security aspects of the home, such as locking systems and alarms. Further guidance on complying with the requirements of SBD can be found in Secured by Design New Homes 2016.


Our advice is to consult your SBD liaison officer right at the start if you are developing or redeveloping under SBD. And, when sourcing windows and doors, ask your supplier for their SBD licence and certificates of their third party certification scheme.