Detecting deception
Polygraph equipment measures different physical parameters such as heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, and sweating from the palm. Brain activity can also be monitored as well as psychological techniques to assess behavioural patterns. Data can be displayed and analysed on paper charts or with computers. Other technologies to detect deception include complex computer-aided voice analysis programs which combines measuring voice stress with behavioural analysis. These technologies are already in use by the insurance industry and pilot projects are underway by two government departments. This POSTnote will give an overview of scientific opinion on the reliability of polygraph tests and other technologies to detect deception. It will examine the range of applications for such tests and the context in which they are used in the commercial and public sector. It will also consider research into other methods to detect deception, honesty and integrity and the implications of using technologies that may often give false positive results, including guidance and codes of conduct for their use and the relevance of human rights legislation.
Short title:
Detecting deception
Start date:
End date:
Brain Science
Project leader:
Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology of the UK Parliament (POST)