What Is A Private Investigator?
A private investigator, an investigative agent, or private detective, is someone who may be employed by individuals, companies or NGOs to undertake investigative services. Private detectives are also frequently employed by lawyers in civil and criminal matters. Private investigation agencies provide reports on crimes and criminal activities of witnesses and suspects. They obtain important evidence for trials, court proceedings and investigations for corporate crime.
In the United States, private investigators specialize in white collar criminal investigations including corporate, tax, labor and public corruption cases, missing persons cases, adult search cases, intellectual property cases, insurance claims and frauds, etc. They may be employed by government agencies like FBI, IRS, Customs, Immigration, FTC, Homeland Security or even local law enforcement agencies. They serve in the capacity of investigators, private security consultants, private detectives, support staff, etc. They may even serve as bailiffs or bounty hunters.
Today, many private investigators are self-employed people, whose sole business is in performing investigative work. There are a number of ways in which a private investigator can perform his duties. He can use different modes of communication like phone records without password, mobile phone records, internet records, computer forensics, secret service agents, etc. He may also use different sources of gathering evidence. However, he may use only those sources, which fall within his defined area of expertise.
Generally, a private investigator must have certain qualifications. He must have good analytical and writing skills, must have knowledge of the relevant laws of the country and must be aware of the procedures followed in legal proceedings. He must have a good command over the English language. Moreover, he should have sound knowledge of the relevant terminology used in various disciplines such as electronics, computers, financial crimes, Internet frauds, telemarketing, etc.
The first thing required by a private investigator is to have an official license from the state in which he is working. Private investigators in the United States need to get their licenses from the state in which they are operating their business. This is because the privacy rights of citizens are protected in every state in the United States. This is what makes a private investigator an individual who has consent from the person he is serving. Private investigators need to follow a stringent process of recruitment before they can get a license.
In fact, there are certain advantages of hiring private investigators. For instance, private investigators offer cost effective police department services. They conduct background investigations, conduct interviews, obtain police reports, perform tests, perform oral testimony, deliver court papers, and present expert witness in court proceedings. They help solve legal problems and civil suits. Furthermore, private investigators to help law enforcement agencies in developing effective and efficient crime enforcement programs.
Another benefit that private investigators can offer to private citizens is that they can act as private investigators without the requirement for a government license. Most states require private investigators to be licensed. In order to operate legally, private investigators must undergo thorough background investigations to ensure that they have no criminal history. There are many companies that provide online services that allow private investigators to look up background information on someone. These background searches help the law enforcement agencies in determining if a private investigator is trustworthy.
Credit checks are one of the most important factors a private investigator must consider before hiring people. A private investigator must complete a comprehensive credit check to make sure that the person he wants to hire has not been defrauded by his employer or banks. All companies hire private investigators with no exception. In fact, all employers conduct a credit check to hire employees.