How Do Private Investigators Do Surveillance?

How Do Private Investigators Do Surveillance?

Private investigators or private security agencies do surveillance every day and it depends on various factors. In the world of technology, the definition of surveillance is changing rapidly. Basically, surveillance is the process in which close observation of an object, place, or person is done by the investigator of the security company.

Technologies made the surveillance easy for the private investigators or security agencies but they should also have the knowledge about the technology. They need to keep them updated.

If you give your case to any private security agency, the true investigator of the security agency goes through the following stages:-

STAGE 1: Purpose Of The Surveillance.

The first thing a true professional does is, he finds the purpose of surveillance, is the purpose of surveillance legal or not? Is the purpose of the investigation is moral or ethics?

If you go to any security company to hire any private investigator then this company also wants to know these things from you.

So, these are the things which he finds out before starting the investigation of any person.

STAGE 2: Information Of The Target.

After completing the first part, the second stage is pretty clear, in this stage the investigator takes all the information about the target from his client. 

These are some information which he/she gets from his/her client:-

  1. Where does the target live?

  2. What does the target look like ( photo or something)

  3. Where does the target work?

  4. What is the target’s daily routine?

STAGE 3: Making Schedule Of Surveillance.

Most difficult stage as compared to all other for mostly private security agencies. If this stage is done by the investigator and client as a team, then this stage becomes easy and also saves the money of the client.

STAGE 4: Investigation.

In this stage of surveillance, the investigation is done by the private detective. In this part of the process, all the research is conducted. After completing every research, it’s time to come out and take a look at the client.

All security companies train their detective very professionally for this stage.

Whatever, the case is (criminal investigation, fraudulent insurance claim, etc), an experienced investigator takes every case of surveillance the same.


There are a lot of technologies that are used in this process, technologies not only make the process easy but also boost the speed of surveillance. Most security companies use technologies to surveillance their target and they highly depend on these technologies for their work.

These are some of the technologies which are used by security companies during the process:-

1. Social Media.

All the security agencies gather information about the target from social media. If the target of the security agency is posting his personal information on any social media platform, it leads the security agency to the information they are looking, or show them the correct direction for more research.

Some of the social media posts related to place or location give information about the recently visited place of the target to the private security agency.

This virtual world provides a lot of resources to the private security company’s investigator to find information about the targeted person.

2. GPS And Tracking.

Find the exact location of any person is very easy nowadays. GPS and tracking devices make it easy by giving the current information of the person.

Every security companies use GPS and tracking devices to get the location of the target person.

Security companies’ private investigators attach small devices to the things( such as clothes, cars, etc) which are related to the suspect.

3. Recording Surveillance.

Security companies mainly use two devices for this type of surveillance:- 

A. Devices Used for Listening.

These devices can be used by the security companies for surveillance but the use of these devices is prevented by the government laws. Using these types of devices for the investigation of any person is against the law.    

B. Devices Used For Recording.

Sometimes for getting more and proper information, security agencies use hidden cameras in their work. Video recording is legal only for the place where the privacy of a person is not destroyed. If any security agency is putting the camera on any confidential or private place than it is totally prevented by government law.

Video Technologies Used For Surveillance.

A. Closed Circuit TV(CCTV):

This is the most used technology by any security company because of its very low price. CCTV cameras do not show the images but can record them for you when you are not at the place.

CCTV cameras are used at so many public places for security reasons and these cameras are operated by security companies.

B. Digital Video Cameras:

Digital video cameras are used less as in public places because these are a little bit costly as compared to CCTV. But for private investigation, these are more popular from other cameras because images getting by these cameras are more clear and can be easily transferred to a computer or laptop.

Security companies use these cameras when they keep eyes on someone physically.

C. Board Cameras:

Most of the security companies prefer board cameras because these are tiny in size and can be hidden easily. These cameras also have an external powerhouse, because of this external powerhouse photos clicked by these cameras can be watched from other distanced place and this place can be the HQ of any security company.

4. Physical Surveillance.

This type of surveillance is different from all other methods of it, this is the oldest way of surveillance anyone.

In this security company’s private investigator does actual detective work by using his own skills. He personally keeps eyes on the suspect and collects all information for the client. We should hire a trusted and licensed investigators from private security services provide security companies for this type of surveillance. 

Reasons For Surveillance:-

There are so many reasons because of surveillance is done by security agencies, some of the reasons are mentioning here:-

  1. To avoid crime.

  2. To get information about the crime.

  3. To get the data for interrogation.

  4. To get the data to use in court or future reference.

In this world full of technology, it is very difficult to know what is legal and what is illegal. Technologies are increasing rapidly and they are making things easy for the private security investigators but still, the privacy of a person should be the first priority for the investigators.

Any method or device used by security companies that give information above the public should be used with some rules because these things can be proved illegal in the future.

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