In the movies, private investigators are often portrayed as armed outlaws who get results the police can't kick down doors and shake suspects. In reality, licensed Private Investigators generally do not have to treat broken joints. They fight insurance fraud, infidelity, and corporate impropriety by combing through records and tracing people of interest, using experience gained in the areas of law enforcement: Law, loss prevention, or the military.
That's not to say they don't have to sneak in occasionally or think fast when spotted. Check out these ten lesser-known facts about what it's like to be a detective for hire.
1. THEY WORK UNDERCOVER.
Slipping into a new job for investigative purposes is not limited to law enforcement. Victor Elbeze, founder and chief investigator of UniversalInvestigations Agency, Inc. in Miami & Hollywood, Florida, says his company frequently pursues corporate or corporate fraud cases by having one of its private investigators hired at the company to see what is happening. “If you're a business with a retail outlet that's running out of deposits, we can come in and see what's going on for ourselves,” he says. “Right now, we have someone in a hospital to see who might be stealing prescription drugs. Sometimes we may send a certified fraud examiner to work as an accountant. The best part? “We can be paid at the employee rate as well as for the investigative work that we do. »
2. ONLINE DATING & CATFISHING INVESTIGATION.
Online dating has been a boon for PI: People entwined in internet romances sometimes start to wonder if the person they're matching wit his telling them the truth. "They wonder if the person is whom they say they are," says Victor Elbeze, Universal Investigations Agency, Inc. In Miami & Hollywood, Florida. “It gets to the point where they start asking for money. We had a case where someone claimed they owned businesses and properties they didn't. Typically, the client is an older woman who is divorced and looking for attention. They want to believe. But if you think you're being scammed, you probably are.
3. THEY PISS IN BOTTLES.
A crucial part of surveillance work, typically done to observe behaviors such as infidelity or undue physical exertion in the case of workers' compensation, is going undetected. That means not constantly getting out of a parked car and dealing with personal affairs during a typical 12-hour spy shift in any way possible. As for behavior in the bathroom, Victor says,“You have to get there before you get there. But we will bring a bottle of pee.
4. THEY WILL DIVE INTO YOUR GARBAGE.
Despite a wealth of information available online and in public places, detectives sometimes find their best resource in a trash can."Once something is thrown away, we can get it back," Victor Elbeze says. “It depends on your local municipality. But we've had success with that.With a child custody investigation case, we were able to find evidence of drug use – crack pipes and powders. And yes, it isn’t lovely. “We use face masks with Vicks rubbed into them. »
For Intel, nothing beats "friendship" with a business topic on Facebook. Since subjects are unlikely to accept a request from a PI, some opt to create fake accounts. "It's safe to say that most of us have a few different accounts," Victor Elbeze, a Miami Florida private investigator. “Some guys like blondes, some guys like redheads. Anything that brings us in. My fake accounts are exponentially more famous than me.
6. THEY CAN FIND OUT HOW MUCH MONEY YOU HAVE.
Depending on their location, Private investigators may be allowed access to your bank accounts, not to manage your funds, but to find out exactly how much money you have to see if you could withhold assets in a divorce or death. another dispute. "It's a trade secret, but we have ways of knowing where someone has an account and how much money is in it," Victor Elbeze said. 'It's not generally admissible in court, but it's the information we're allowed to give to lawyers.'
7. THEY ARE ASKED TO INVESTIGATE THE PARANORMAL.
Now and then, someone will mistake Victor Elbeze for aGhostbuster. “The most unusual request, I think, was from someone who thought their television was haunted,” he says. 'That's... way outside of what we do.'
8. SOCIAL MEDIA IS LIKE A GIANT DATABASE.
Having a social media profile is probably bad news if you' retrying to stay off a private detective's radar. "It's a goldmine of information," Victor Elbeze says. “People like to document their whole life. I have seen people who have allegedly been “injured” at work post-exercise photos. I was also able to determine which vehicles a person owns through online photos. And remember, even when you delete something, it may still be recoverable. 'Nothing is going away,' Victor Elbeze said.
9. THEY KNOW HOW TO FOLLOW BY CAR OR ON FOOT.
Non-paranoid people are usually unsuspecting of someone following them, but there is an excellent way to avoid detection when private detectives want to follow a car on the road. “When we need to follow people, we use two drivers,” Victor Elbeze explains. “That way, they don't see the same car behind them all the time. »
10. CUSTOMERS DON'T ALWAYS TELL YOU EVERYTHING.
Sometimes Private investigators are hired for jobs without knowing the whole story. "A guy called me at midnight to do some surveillance that night at his house because he was out of town and his teenage daughter was home alone," Victor Elbeze says. “I thought it was bizarre and last minute, but I wasn't going to turn down the job. He called me every 10 minutes until 4 am. Eventually, he asked me to get out of the car and sneak up to the windows to see if another man was with his daughter. That's when I realized something more was going on there. It turns out the man was estranged from his wife and extremely jealous of her new boyfriend. He wanted me to watch them. I said no.'
For more information regarding private investigation services, contact
Universal investigations Agency, Inc. today at (954) 305-6275.
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By Victor Elbeze Lead Investigator & Owner of Universal Investigations Agency, Inc.