Security guards who work at casinos are called gaming surveillance officers. They make sure that patrons and employees are not cheating the casino out of money. Gaming surveillance officers spend much of their time in surveillance rooms monitoring camera feeds, but may also monitor patrons and employees directly from the casino floor.
National Average Pay
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that gaming surveillance officers earned an average wage of $15.40 an hour and an average annual salary of $32,040 as of May 2012. The median-earning 50 percent of casino surveillance officers earned between $24,660 and $37,740 annually. The lowest-paid 10 percent of gaming surveillance officers brought home $20,980 or less per year, and the highest-paid 10 percent made $46,580 or more per year.
Pay by State
As of 2012, the BLS reports that gaming surveillance officers working in Indiana reported higher average pay than those employed in any other state at $43,120 per year. Those in Connecticut ranked second, with an average annual salary of $42,250. Gaming surveillance officers in Illinois ranked third at $39,840 per year, followed by those in Nevada at $36,560 and Washington at $35,960. South Dakota reported the lowest average pay for casino security officers, $26,820 per year.
Pay by Casino Type
According to the BLS, gaming surveillance officers employed by local government casinos earned an average of $14.54 an hour and $30,250 per year as of 2012. Those working for private casinos earned slightly more, with an average wage of $14.99 an hour and an average salary of $31,190 per year. Hotel casinos paid gaming surveillance officers substantially more, an average of $17.04 an hour and $35,440 per year.
As more states legalize gambling, the number of casino surveillance officers employed in the United States is expected to grow. The BLS says gaming surveillance officer positions will grow at a rate of nine percent between 2010 and 2020, leading to an estimated 600 new jobs by 2020. Applicants who have prior experience in law enforcement or as security guards in other fields are the most likely to find employment as casino surveillance officers.