When people want information that they cannot obtain on their own they may hire private investigators (PIs) who are sometimes called “detectives”. Many private investigators have offices where they gather information by telephone or computer. However they spend a considerable amount of time outside an office doing surveillance and getting leads by interviewing people. This profession did not used to be viewed as reputable but that has changed because of an increased need for the services of private investigators. The insurance industry hires private investigators to determine whether people are making fraudulent insurance claims about injuries they might not have sustained. Spouses hire private investigators to see whether a husband or wife is cheating with someone else. Potential employers hire private investigator to do background checks on job applicants. Lawyers hire private investigators to find information essential to their cases. Other reasons for hiring a private investigator could be to trace a lost friend or relative or find a missing person or a beneficiary of a deceased person’s estate. The private investigation profession does not have formal educational requirements but most private investigators have some college and many have a bachelor’s degree. Private investigators must be knowledgeable about computers and they must be good at navigating the internet. In addition they must know how to operate cameras and video equipment. Some states require private investigators to have a license especially if they carry a concealed firearm. The work of a private investigator can be challenging. First there is no set number of hours they may have to work to solve a case. Second they may have to break unpleasant news to their clients. The website www.ehow.com says that job prospects for private investigators are good because of all the recent security measures that prevent ordinary people from getting the information they need. The median annual earnings for private investigators are approximately $33750.
|Education Required:||Associate's Degree|
|Tasks:||Carries out confidential investigations.
Searches for people who are difficult to find.
Uses various types of surveillance.
Works undercover to gather information.
|Also Called:||Private Detective