Private investigation, as an industry, is one still shrouded in urban legends and information gained form pop culture such as movies and TV shows. These often portray Private Investigators as some kind of de facto branch of the law or in some cases they paint them as legal vigilantes who work within the grey area of the law. This really couldn’t be further from the truth, many people who work as PI’s have had jobs which had no involvement with the law and there are strict rules and regulations surround the engagement and execution of private investigations. Hopefully this list will give you an idea of some of the responsibilities and methods used by these investigators and hopefully dispel some of these untrue and unhelpful preconceptions.
This is actually what most P.I’s spend 80% of their time doing. This can mostly done by computer and is regarded a staple activity and the basis of most kinds of investigation. These research activities can range from gathering phone numbers and social media data from the person or entity being investigated to searching computers or running criminal background checks on those applying for a higher end position within the clients company. They then condense their findings down to a report in which you will be left to analyze and act upon the information that they have unearthed.
One of the most misunderstood aspects of private investigations is the surveillance of individuals at a client’s request. However there are naturally limits imposed by the law the same as any other person out there, for example, they cannot conduct surveillance ton another person’s line of communications without a warrant issued by your local jurisdiction. They also cannot trespass or break and enter legally again without a warrant obtained from a judge. So don’t expect you P.I to be Charles Bronson-ing their way around town for you, because it’s just as illegal as if you did it.
To verify information they have gathered or otherwise obtained your P.I will most likely conduct interviews with persons of interest in their investigations. They can be anything from family and friends of a missing person a witness to an infidelity case or a myriad of different people. After all what better way of getting the truth is there than to just ask the person who knows.
Hopefully this clears a few of these duties up for you. Please click the following link for more information about the duties of a private investigator.