explainer

Everything we know about the crazy amount of security guarding Meghan and Prince Harry.

To catch up on all things royal family, make sure you check out our Royal Hub. We’ve got you completely covered.

For the everyday Australian, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s visit is an exciting opportunity to maybe meet the royals (or switch off the TV and get outside to avoid the rolling coverage).

But for the men and women of our police force, the visit is a potentially stress-inducing, logistical challenge requiring hundreds, if not thousands, of officers and a whole lot of firepower.

From day one of the royal tour, we’ve seen how intense the police presence has been.

As the Duke and Duchess of Sussex greeted royal fans who had turned out to meet them, police snipers were keeping a close eye in the sails of the Sydney Opera House, ready to fire if required.

prince-harry-royal-tour
The snipers were hard to miss. Image: Getty

Sniffer dogs were also around searching for suspicious scents coming from people's bags - which had to be scanned as fans entered through security checks on their way in.

Meanwhile, water police were boating around the harbour, with police divers also checking for bombs.

And while the newlywed couple haven't been spotted far away from police officers at any time, the security seems to have relaxed slightly since that first engagement. Emphasis on the slightly.

prince-harry-royal-tour
The water police made sure no threats came by the ocean. Image: Getty
ADVERTISEMENT

On Friday, barriers were erected around the section of Bondi beach where the Duke and Duchess were sitting with locals. Security were checking people at the barrier, News.com.au reports, and making sure that any gifts for the royal couple weren't in fact bombs.

Aside from trying to protect the couple from threats, the police presence is also needed for crowd control, as people get a little pushy when waiting to see their favourite royals.

And it all seems to be working smoothly. On Thursday, one man waiting at Victoria's Government House was spotted being placed in handcuffs and taken away by police for questioning.

No touching rule.

Prince Harry has now broken the "no touching" rule at least three times now.

First, there was the adorable moment five-year-old Luke Vincent stroked the Prince's beard before giving him a hug - a memory that will be forever etched in our hearts. Harry enjoyed the hug so much, he asked little Luke if he wanted to give his wife, Meghan a cuddle, too.

Then on Thursday Prince Harry broke royal protocol once again and embraced a Melbourne teenager in a crowd lining their path to Victoria's Government House.

prince-harry-luke-vincent
Very much breaking protocol. Not that anyone actually cared. Image: Getty
ADVERTISEMENT

India Brown - who was holding a sign that read "Been here since 4am, loved you since I was 8" - was left shaking and crying (with joy) after the exchange.

At Bondi beach on Thursday one of the men meeting Prince Harry also chose to greet the slightly taken aback royal with a hug.

While this royal protocol has in the past been more about the perception it's rude to hug the royal family more than anything else - there's no doubt it would also be recommended against for security reasons.

Security outside of the royal tour.

Prince Harry and Meghan are no strangers to tight security, which includes a team of personal bodyguards following them wherever they go.

The couple's bodyguards use code names when talking about them as an added security measure, The Sun revealed last month.

To save confusion, however, the fake names do relate to the pair in a less-than-obvious way. The pseudonyms always carry the initials "DS" for Duke and Duchess of Sussex. For instance, Daniel Stone (a name we totally made up, by the way).

These names are also changed regularly for added protection for the couple.

Harry and Meghan might also be thinking the security is light compared to the virtual fortress their home at Kensington Palace became shortly after their royal wedding in May.

Around that time, the Sun on Sunday reported that British Special Forces members armed with machine guns were protecting the couple after fears were sparked that they may be targeted by the Taliban.

The threat stemmed from comments made by Prince Harry in 2013 when he was a member of the British Army working in Afghanistan and told news outlets that he had killed Taliban fighters.

Their home security is also reported to include motion sensors and cameras - with intruders facing a possible six months jail time for trespassing.

FROM OUR NETWORK
00:00 / ???