You probably have read a book and seen a movie or a TV show that depicts private investigators. You might already know that their job is to find concrete proofs or evidence about a certain situation. They do this by getting useful information and statements from witnesses and bystanders. They follow people, take pictures, fish around buildings and are on the lookout for clues. These are the typical images that you know about a private investigator.
But how many of the events being depicted in books and movies are really being done? You can learn what it takes to become a private investigator and what does the job entail in this article.
- Private investigators are paid to collect facts.
They typically work for private citizens or business owners than work and not for the government. Private investigators are not law-enforcement officials. Their only job is to gather facts and information and not to arrest or take legal action against criminals.
- Private investigators have different fields of investigation.
Based on their background and training, investigators focus on a specific field. There are those who are self-employed. Others work for detective agencies and / or security services, while some work for financial institutions and credit collection services.
Depending on their degree and background, they can focus on a field where they can apply their skills. For example, someone who is a certified public accountant can specialize in financial investigation, or someone with a background and knowledge in patents and trademarks can be skillful in doing intellectual property jobs. There are also loss-prevention agents to investigate on employee theft and shoplifting. You can call an investigator for a specific dilemma you have and they can be sure to be of help to you.
- Private investigators can have multiple roles.
Some hotels and casinos hire detectives or private investigators to protect their property and investigate on thefts or petty crimes. These investigators also act as security guards.
- Private investigators really do surveillances.
A private investigator is like a good researcher. He uses a number of sources of information and facts when solving a case. He also does surveillances and follows a specific target and documents his whereabouts carefully. Lastly, he can follow people without losing them or being detected. The job requires patience since watching and following someone can take long hours and can be a very tiresome task.
- Private investigators know how to access public records.
Private investigators know where to get the information, who to ask for the information and how to get the information. They are skilled in searching for databases that include someone’s tax records, real estate transactions, records of birth and even death, court records, voter registrations, business licenses, DMV records and many others.
- Private investigators are trained to do in-depth analysis.
Aside from being skilled in getting and obtaining information, private investigators are very analytical. They know what to analyse and how to analyse. Finally, they know how to present information to their clients.
Private investigators are trained well in their craft. It may not be an easy task but a worthwhile one.