Why Men Cheat on Their Pregnant Wives

May 13, 2021 - Reading time: 8 minutes

It may sound unfathomable, but it’s not uncommon for men to cheat on their pregnant wives. Some experts estimate that 10% of men start having affairs when their wives are expecting.

What is it about pregnancy that can turn a faithful man into a cheating husband? Why do men stray at a time when they should be closer than ever to their partners?

Pregnant woman holding baby bump

1. Their Emotional Needs Aren’t Being Met

Infidelity isn't always about sex. Some men cheat because their emotional needs aren’t being met. Pregnant women, rightfully, receive a lot of attention and care. Men may feel left out of the picture and neglected. 

A desire to feel cared for, wanted and needed can drive some men into the arms of other women when their wives are pregnant. 

Cheating gives them that temporary validation and positive attention they’re seeking and not getting from their relationship.

Emotional needs can mean a lot of different things:

  • Admiration: Everyone, including men, has an innate desire to be admired. But admiration is often one of the first things to go in a relationship. Partners stop complimenting and praising each other. When admiration is replaced with criticism, this can drive men to seek admiration from another woman.
  • Affection: Pregnancy and marriage can put things, like affection, on the backburner. But a lack of affection can degrade a relationship. When men feel like they are unappreciated or unwanted, they may seek these things in another woman.
  • Attractiveness: Unfortunately, some men struggle with the physical changes that women go through during pregnancy. 
  • Companionship: When couples first start dating, they plan dates and activities they both enjoy. These things can be neglected after marriage, and it can drive some men to seek out companionship in other women.
  • Sex: If a man isn’t getting the sexual fulfilment he desires, he may seek it in another partner outside of the relationship. When a couple’s sex drive is out of sync, it can increase the risk of infidelity.

2. Pregnant Women Can Have a Lower Sex Drive

Pregnancy is a time of great change for women, and that includes their sex drive. In the first trimester alone, studies have shown that women have sex 20% less often because of their declining sex drive.

Several factors can affect a pregnant woman’s libido, including:

  • Nausea or morning sickness
  • Fatigue
  • Fear of harming the baby
  • Discomfort
  • Feeling insecure

Lack of sexual intimacy drives many men to stray outside their marriage. A cheating boyfriend or husband may simply be looking to fill a physical need or desire. 

3. Some Men Look for Outside Support

Man sitting on a bench alone

Whether it’s a couple’s first or third pregnancy, a child means change. Some partners don’t adapt well to change together. 

A cheating husband may be feeling a whirlwind of emotions, including anger, stress, anxiety and fear. He may feel the need to look for support from someone outside of his relationship. Some men try to escape these feelings or their new responsibilities by seeking affection from other women rather than communicating with their partners.

4. Stress Can Drive Escapism in Men

Bringing a child into this world can be stressful. Research shows that for fathers-to-be, anxiety can be up to five times higher than normal during their partner’s pregnancy.

Life is changing. The future is uncertain. Couples may be arguing more than usual. Conflict and stress can cause some men to run away rather than resolve these issues with their partner.

The added stress of conflict and the pregnancy itself can drive some men to cheat because they’re looking for a way to escape reality. Cheating is just a form of escapism for some men. It’s their coping mechanism. That doesn’t make it right or healthy. But because they haven’t learned better ways to cope with their stress, they’ll try and escape reality by jumping into the arms of another woman.

5. Some Men are Ready to Call it Quits

Marriage and pregnancy complicate relationships. If a relationship was already on the rocks prior to pregnancy, some men may be ready to call it quits, but don’t know how to do it face-to-face. 

Instead, they use cheating as a way to end the marriage. They hope their wives find out about their extramarital affairs and end the marriage for them.

6. Fatherhood Can Lead to an Identity Crisis

Fatherhood can trigger an identity crisis in some men, even if they already have children. Having children changes everything. Suddenly, life isn’t all about you. 

Many parents lose their sense of self or identity. They feel disconnected with parts of themselves. Some men use cheating as a way to try and reconnect with those missing pieces or to fill a void.

7. Some Men are Bored

Pregnant woman pointing at her baby bump

Boredom can drive men to cheat regardless of whether their wives are pregnant. Some men just aren’t ready to settle down and the idea of fatherhood may drive them to boredom. Others are just bored in general with the relationship (or their lives).

A desire for variety is a major driver of infidelity. Some men use cheating as a way to spice up their lives and kick boredom to the curb.

8. Childhood Trauma can Increase the Odds of Cheating

Men who have a history of childhood trauma – physical, emotional, sexual, etc. – may be more likely to cheat if they haven’t taken steps to address that trauma. 

Unresolved issues and exposure to infidelity during childhood can also make some men more likely to cheat on their pregnant wives. Research shows that children who are exposed to parents having an affair were twice as likely to cheat themselves with future partners.

Men who have a history of cheating are also more likely to cheat in the future, and pregnancy may be just the right trigger to drive his impulses. 

There are many reasons why men cheat on their pregnant wives – or why men cheat in general. Sex is sometimes the primary reason, but often, it boils down to unhealthy coping mechanisms, unfulfilled emotional needs or an ego that needs a boost. 

How we can help

If you believe that your boyfriend or husband might be cheating on you whilst you are pregnant, then trust your instincts and don’t suffer in silence. We can help to investigate your partner, check his activities, and gather evidence in the form of photos/video.

Often women will not feel comfortable confronting their partners about infidelity until they have solid proof, which is what we endeavour to provide as part of our surveillance service. Of course, if your partner is not cheating, then we can help to confirm this and provide evidence, without your boyfriend or husband finding out that he is being monitored by us. Our agents cover all areas of the UK. Feel free to read our homepage for more information about us, or get in touch with one of our experienced team members for help and advice. 

How to catch fly tippers in the UK

May 7, 2021 - Reading time: 7 minutes

Fly tipping is one of the unfortunate problems that private land owners in the UK are faced with. With substantial clean up bills amounting to thousands of pounds in many cases, the financial impact of fly tipping can often prove devastating.

Fly tippers often leave behind hazardous waste which can be costly to remove and potentially harmful to your health. Construction waste containing asbestos is regularly found within fly tipped rubbish and has the potential to contaminate your land, leading to even larger clean up bills. 

Rubbish left by fly tippers

Due to the costs associated with clean up, many landowners take steps to fortify and protect their land, with the goal of blocking access to nefarious individuals and their waste. As a leading detective agency based in the UK, we have dealt with many cases where land owners have simply had enough of fly tipping, and instructed us to stakeout their land with the goal of catching fly tippers in the act.

How to catch fly tippers in the UK

We believe that the illegal dumping of waste has no place in a modern society, and that fly tippers should be caught and prosecuted wherever possible. With that in mind, we have put together the following tips which can be used to help catch fly tippers.

1. Keep an eye on your property

If you own a piece of vacant land, then making regular visits to it should be a priority for you. If fly tippers deposit waste onto a piece of land and discover that it has remained undisturbed for several weeks or months, this can act as encouragement for them to continue and deposit even more rubbish on the site.

Keeping an eye on your property can help to nip fly tipping in the bud before it escalates. Similarly, maintaining your land by regularly cutting back vegetation and hedges can sometimes help to make it appear well maintained and thus less appealing to fly tippers. Fly tippers will typically look to deposit waste onto land where it may not be noticed for several weeks or months, which helps to lower their likelihood of getting caught. 

Joining your local “neighbourhood watch” or “farm watch” initiatives can also prove beneficial in many cases.

2. Install hidden cameras

If you are seeking to actually catch a fly tipper, then hidden cameras are a great means of doing so. Whereas overt cameras are often intended to act as a deterrent, hidden cameras can be used to gather evidence of fly tippers without them noticing or becoming aware of the surveillance. 

Overt camera which are not hidden can sometimes even prompt fly tippers to take steps to conceal their identities, such as obscuring the number plates on their vehicles whilst they unload rubbish. If your goal is to actually catch a fly tipper in the act and prosecute them, then using hidden cameras would be a good choice in most cases.

Overt CCTV cameras mounted on a wall

Camera technology has come a long way in recent years, and devices which are powered by solar panels, or rechargeable battery powered cameras can be utilized without a supply of mains power.

When choosing a camera, it’s important to select a model which is capable of recording vehicle number plates, and quality images of the perpetrator’s faces. The cameras should then be positioned in such a way that they remain discreet while capturing the best possible evidence.

If you are not technically minded or need help with installing a hidden camera on your land then we can help. We have installed camera equipment which has been used to catch those responsible for fly tipping on numerous occasions, and our detectives cover all areas of the UK. Please feel free to get in touch with us for a quote.

3. Conduct stakeouts on your property

While this may seem over the top to some, if your land has previously been subject to fly tipping then you will know that the clean up costs can quickly add up into thousands of pounds. Catching fly tippers red handed can provide the opportunity to pursue them through the courts with the goal of recovering any clean up costs they have caused you to accrue, as well as making the police aware so that they can hopefully begin proceedings in the criminal courts.

While conducting stakeouts, you should be mindful as to the position where you lay in wait, and make sure that you bring quality camera equipment which can be used to capture clear evidence. For stakeouts at night, cameras which capture high quality images during low light should be used. 

If you are not able to stakeout land yourself or require help, then our detectives can help to provide you with surveillance, with the goal of catching any fly tippers in the act.

4. Work as a community 

Fly tipping creates an unsightly blight on our country sides and urban areas, and with clean up bills across the UK reaching millions of pounds per annum, fly tippers cause land owners huge amounts of avoidable work and expense.   

Rather than deterring fly tippers from entering your land and encouraging them to dump rubbish elsewhere, we feel that one solution is to work together as a community to catch fly tippers, prosecute them, and put them out of business for good.

Man with binoculars 

Working as a community to defeat fly tippers can take many different forms, from pooling resources to instruct private investigators to surveil an area with the goal of catching fly tippers in the act, setting up CCTV systems and sharing images with each other, or starting a neighbourhood watch program where community members keep an eye on each other’s properties.

Maintaining good relationships within your community is key. We suggest speaking to your neighbours and letting them know that you are not expecting deliveries of household or building waste on your property now or at any point in the future. Advise your community members of fly tipping activity in the area and ask them to jot down the number plates of any vehicles that are seen acting suspiciously.

Getting professional help

At PrivateInvestigators-UK, we are often instructed to help catch fly tippers, whether through our personal surveillance service, hidden camera installation, or other forms of investigation. If you would like to learn more about us and the different services that we offer then please read our homepage for more information, or feel free to contact one of our experienced team members if you require our help.

How private investigators dig up dirt on people

April 3, 2021 - Reading time: 8 minutes

One of the tasks that private investigators perform on a regular basis is "digging up dirt" on people. The phrase "digging up dirt" can be used to describe any activity which might result in undesirable facts coming to light about a subject. Uncovering negative facts about a person, or their past, can prove to be useful in many different cases.

Private investigator looking at paperwork with a magnifying glass

How to private investigators dig up dirt on people? We've put together this list to offer some insight.

1. Personal surveillance 

"Personal surveillance" is simply the act of watching a person, following them, and collecting photos/video as evidence of their activities. Surveillance operations can run in duration from 1 day, to several weeks or months in some cases.

The belief with this strategy is that if you watch a person for long enough, that eventually they will do something which could be viewed with a negative light. Perhaps they are seen travelling to a massage parlour, a strip club, or another adult entertainment venue. Maybe they are seen to attend political gatherings which might not be inline with their claimed beliefs. 

Gathering evidence of the subject making visits into any such places could seriously harm their reputation and be used to discredit them.  

2. Social media research

With social media growing in popularity in recent years, it's difficult to find someone that does not have a digital footprint and a social media presence of some kind. Private investigators tend to maintain multiple different social media profiles, which they can use to befriend the subject… By using sock puppet accounts, detectives can represent themselves as attractive members of the opposite sex or successful business people in a relevant field to the subject's occupation, for example. We tend to find that attractive members of the opposite sex are the best choice when it comes to befriending a person on social media.

Social media icons on a phone

Social media research can prove to be useful in many cases. From the subject sharing controversial opinions or politically related posts, to engaging in arguments or even becoming abusive, there are many different ways that a person can make themselves look bad through social media. Our job can be to trawl through their posts and find material which shines another light on their character.

Social media research can also prove beneficial when it comes to conducting personal surveillance, in terms of learning about the subject's routine and which locations they visit on a regular basis, among many other things.

3. Going through their rubbish

While this is not a tactic that tends to be used by our firm in particular, there have been many documented cases of private investigators going through people's garbage in order to find incriminating evidence.

Wheelie bins

People often discard paperwork and documents which can be used by identity fraudsters; which is why it's a good idea to shred any private documents before disposing of it in your wheelie bin. Despite the risks, many people simply do not take the step to shred their paperwork before disposing of it.

Although a taboo subject for many, private investigators have been known to dive through rubbish in order to gather evidence or dig up dirt on people.

4. Finding disgruntled spouses

If your goal is simply to "dig up dirt" on the subject, then a good method of achieving this can be to find disgruntled spouses, business partners, or even friends. They can then be interviewed and attest to the subject's bad character. 

Finding previous spouses can often be achieved through searching records, and past business associates can be located through researching any firms where the subject has previously held directorship or shares. Social media research can also help to provide clues and fill in blanks along the way.

5. Creating a honeytrap

A honeytrap assignment can be a great opportunity to get close to the subject, gain their trust, and potentially uncover incriminating information about them. 

So, what is a honeytrap? A honeytrap would involve sending an attractive member of the opposite sex – or even the same sex, depending on their preferences – to speak with the subject with the goal of starting a romantic exchange. 

An attractive female

While honeytraps are typically used during infidelity investigations, they can also be utilized for other purposes, depending on the needs of our client.

Once the agent has gained trust from the subject, they might be more likely to share information which they otherwise would not divulge to a stranger. These exchanges can then be recorded and used to our benefit. 

While honeytrap assignments are traditionally initiated whilst the subject is in a public place (such as a bar, club, or restaurant, for example), more honeytrap cases now involve initiating contact through social media or dating sites.

6. Check their records

Checking people's records can prove to be an excellent method of digging up dirt and discrediting them. Whilst a parking fine or speeding ticket might not prove too much a cause for concern; if the subject is (or has previously) attended crown court to face allegations of violent or sexual offenses, for example, this could prove to be extremely damaging to their character. 

Private investigators are experts at accessing such data and finding evidence of a person's court appearances, or judgements which have been made against them. These checks are often more thorough and in-depth than standard DBS checks which are often used by employers.

Why would a private investigator dig up dirt on someone?

Private investigators act under instruction from their clients, and the reasons that a client may wish to dig up dirt on a subject can vary from case to case. In cases which involve the custody of children, during divorce proceedings, or for civil litigation, it is easy to understand how discrediting a person might benefit our clients.

However, there are many other cases where we might be asked to uncover information about a subject, including business due diligence, or to vet the background of a potential spouse, for example.

Is a private investigator digging up dirt on you?

If you believe that a private investigator might be trying to dig up dirt on you, then we can help by providing counter surveillance. Counter surveillance can allow us to confirm that a private investigator is following our client. We also provide a bug sweeping service, which can be used to detect unwanted bugging devices such as hidden cameras, microphones, or GPS tracking devices.

As private investigators ourselves, we are fully aware of the different tactics that a detective agency might use to gather information on a subject. And if you suspect that you're being followed, or your property has been bugged, then we can help – our detectives cover all areas of the United Kingdom. Please feel free to browse our website for more information about our services or get in touch with us for a free quote.

Can private investigators have tattoos?

March 31, 2021 - Reading time: 5 minutes

Can private investigators have tattoos? This is question that I was recently asked and the answer might surprise you.

Yes, private investigators absolutely can have tattoos. In order for our detectives to work discreetly in any environment, we work with a range of different agents, from all different backgrounds and walks of life… that includes people with tattoos. In some cases tattoos may even prove beneficial to a case, if they help an agent to better blend into their surroundings and cause the subject, or any onlookers, to view them with less suspicion.

As a leading detective agency based in the UK, we believe that in order for us to achieve the best possible results, that our agents should properly represent the British population. With a growing number of people in the UK sporting ink, tattoos are becoming more and more common, and many of the agents working for us are tattooed.

Tattoos in the private detective industry

The stance that a detective agency takes towards tattoos will likely vary depending on the role of the agent or employee, as well as the management's personal preference.

For example, some firms might prefer that their front-of-house office staff do not sport visible tattoos; however, even firms with such policies are likely to take a different stance when it comes to agents that are tasked with performing investigations in the field.

We believe that it would be unwise for a detective agency to avoid all tattooed people, and cause them to miss working alongside many different skilled and talented individuals. 

A suited man with tattoos on his arms

Tattoo advice for budding PIs

If you are a young person reading this blog post, or someone that is considering a career in private investigation down the line; We would recommend to avoid tattooing yourself in visible areas such as the hands, neck, or face. Avoiding tattoos in these areas can help to provide you with a choice: "Do I want to show my tattoos or not?" and "Would showing or hiding my tattoos be the best choice for this case?".

Having the versatility to choose between showing or hiding your tattoos would be the best option in most cases, and tattoos on the face or neck in particular tend to be more memorable than those on other body parts, which might prove to be a hinderance whilst completing surveillance assignments (if you have a large tattoo on your neck, for example, it will likely be easier for the subject of the investigation to identify and remember you).

Our firm does not have an issue hiring tattooed people, and with many of our agents coming from former military or law enforcement backgrounds, tattoos are to be expected. 

However, this is not to say that all detective agencies are as tolerant. Visible tattoos might still be seen negatively by some employers, and career minded people should seriously consider their choice before deciding to get a tattoo - especially those which cannot be hidden by normal business attire. 

Starting a career in private investigation can be difficult, with most firms looking for candidates with experience in the field. For those that are keen on pursuing a career in private investigation, our advice would be to concentrate on earning qualifications and experience in the investigative field.

If you are aspiring for a career in private investigation, then the best course of action would be to focus on achieving as many relevant qualifications as possible. A CV which is filled with an impressive list of qualifications and certificates that are related to the investigation industry, is much more likely to impress a potential employer than tattoos are. 

Please click through to our blog post for more information on the subject of careers in private investigation.

Are attitudes shifting towards tattoos?

The current generation are more tattooed than ever, and we feel that old attitudes on this subject are gradually shifting to become more tolerant of tattoos. While there will always be some people that dislike tattoos, or describe them as appearing unprofessional in a business setting, these people are becoming more of a minority as time goes on.

Whilst attitudes might be slowly shifting, there will probably always be some employers that view tattoos with a negative light, and we would urge young people to err on the side of caution when it comes to body art. 

Whilst conducting our profession as private investigators, we feel it’s important to keep an open mind and be inclusive of as many people from different walks of life as possible. We work with agents from all different races, religions, ethnic backgrounds, genders, ages, social statues, and so on.

This allows us to select the best and most appropriate agent for each case, which helps us to camouflage ourselves into our surroundings and gather evidence without arousing suspicion. We endeavour to use the most appropriate agent for each task wherever possible, and tattooed people can fit in better in a growing number of different settings.

Top 20 Surveillance Tips for Private Investigators

March 23, 2021 - Reading time: 15 minutes

Surveillance one of the ‘bread and butter’ type services that is typically offered by private investigators, and as a leading detective agency based in the UK, surveillance is one of the core services provided by us.

We are able to provide our surveillance service across a wide range of different locations and environments across the United Kingdom. Contrary to private investigators’ depiction in popular TV and films, our work is often mundane and boring.  Surveillance operations can often entail waiting in situ for many hours, for a window of opportunity to photograph to the subject which may last seconds in some cases. Maintaining concentration for the duration of a surveillance operation is key to reaching a successful outcome.

Surveillance tips for private investigators

With that in mind, we have put together these top 20 surveillance tips for private investigators.

1. Do your homework

Before conducting surveillance, it's important to do some pre-investigative research on the subject, their lifestyle, and any places they are likely to visit during surveillance. Be sure to ask the client a set of questions which provides as much information as possible, specifically details which could aid in identifying the subject or predicting their movements, including any locations they are likely to visit. 

Additional clues, or information on the subject's movements can be collected from their social media in many cases. Building a collection of social media accounts which can be used to befriend the subject can aid when performing this type of pre-investigative research.

2. Dress appropriately

After you have "done your homework" on the subject and any location they are likely to visit, you will be able to prepare yourself with suitable attire. This may seem like a trivial point but is in fact very important whilst conducting private investigations.  

If you are going to be conducting surveillance on a beach, for example, then wearing a pair of jeans in this setting would not be appropriate. Remaining discreet whilst wearing clothes that are not appropriate for the situation can be extremely difficult, this is why it's important to understand the location of the assignment and choose clothes which will match that environment. 

3. Keep your vehicle discreet

Vehicles which are being used during surveillance assignments should remain as plain and boring as possible. That means no stickers, no chrome accessories, and no engine or exhaust modifications which could make the vehicle louder. Even the smallest alteration to a vehicle has the potential to stick in a person's mind and help them to remember it at a later date. Keep your vehicle clean and repair any marks such as dents or scratches.

Keeping your vehicle discreet also means ensuring that you cannot be seen inside. We recommend blocking your windows with cardboard or foam cut-outs which are shaped to the size of your windows and covered with black fabric. 

For more information on surveillance vehicles, check out our blog posts What type of cars do private investigators drive? and Window tint used by private investigators.

4. Conduct social media research

With many people choosing to share a surprising amount of personal information about themselves on social media, using these platforms to gain more information about a subject before conducting surveillance assignments is a common tactic used by private detectives. Many detectives will also research the subject's social media profiles whilst waiting in situ during the actual surveillance.

Often the smallest detail can act as a vital clue whilst conducting surveillance, and we have lost count of the times that social media research has benefitted the course of an investigation. A competent detective should endeavour to use all information available to bring about the best possible outcome, and social media is another tool which can be utilized to our advantage.

5. Get setup straightaway

Before conducting surveillance, you should already have a good idea about the best vantage point or position where you intend to park up and wait for the subject; this again falls back on our first point of conducting pre-investigative research.

Using tools such as Google Maps, Street View, or by making a visit to the location before conducting surveillance, can all help to build an idea about the best place to wait, photograph the subject, and/or begin a vehicle pursuit. Figuring out the most likely route the subject is likely to take can also aid in deciding how to position your surveillance vehicle. 

You should be prepared with this information, and already having it to hand before conducting surveillance will help you to get setup and in position straightaway. Getting setup straightaway can help to mitigate suspicion which might otherwise be aroused by curtain-twitching neighbours. 

6. Pay full attention at all times

Private investigation is a profession which few people experience or understand… Often is the case that we will be waiting in position for several hours for a window of opportunity which could last only a few seconds. Whilst we are conducting surveillance it is imperative that the agent pays full attention at all times, in order to react quickly and secure the "money shot".

Getting distracted by playing games on your phone or watching videos has the potential to jeopardize the success of a surveillance operation. All agents must remain focused and alert at all times, with one eye always focused on their surroundings.

Monitors inside a car being used by a private investigator for surveillance 

Photo: Even in a purpose built surveillance vehicle such as this one, the agent operating inside this vehicle must remain alert and pay attention to their camera monitors at all times. 

Our surveillance agents often keep themselves amused during surveillance assignments by listening to podcasts or music to try and fight the boredom whilst remain focused for several hours at a time.

7. Assess all potential outcomes

Whilst we are setup and waiting for a subject, we often use our imagination to try and predict all possible outcomes. For example, the subject might own a car which we anticipate that they will use, but could they choose to make their journey on foot instead? Might they use a bicycle or another mode of transport? In which direction are they likely to travel?

Unforeseen events can take place all the time, and especially whilst surveillance is being conducted. Assessing the situation, predicting all possible movements of the subject, and planning for how to deal with those potential eventualities, would be a trait of a competent private detective.

8. Identify distinctive features on the subject’s vehicle

Being able to recognise your subject’s vehicle at a quick glance can be an important ability whilst conducting surveillance. In order to improve your ability to quickly recognize their car, we find that it helps to identify and note down any distinctive features.

Distinctive features on a vehicle could include anything from the type of wheels that are fitted, whether the car has window tint, missing hubcaps, dents or scratches, chrome accessories, roof rails, badges… You get the idea. Being aware of any unique features, no matter how small, can really help to identify a vehicle, especially if you’re only able to see the car from a distance or at a side angle. 

9. Be conscious of your surroundings and appearance

Whilst conducting surveillance, it’s important to remain conscious of your surroundings, your appearance, and whether you are blending in with your environment.

Firstly, don’t stare at people or their properties. Anyone that stops and stares will instantly be looked at with suspicion. Similarly, don’t loiter or park your vehicle near schools. Park in discreet locations, remain hidden inside your vehicle, be conscious of your surroundings and try to blend into them as much as possible. 

10. Keep your cameras hidden

A person that is taking photos with a digital camera or camcorder will generally attract more attention than someone taking photos with their smart phone. Many people spend a considerable amount of time each day holding their phones, and they can be used to take photos/video far more discreetly than with professional camera gear.

Hidden cameras can also be useful in a number of different settings, and most competent detectives will have an arsenal of discreet cameras to choose from.

Whatever your environment, using professional camera gear will generally arouse suspicion from most members of the public, so whether you are on foot or inside a vehicle, try to keep your camera gear hidden at all times. 

11. Be prepared for a long and boring day

Conducting surveillance can be an exhausting task. Monitoring a property and waiting for a subject often involves sitting in position for several hours, whilst maintaining focus on the subject’s property and waiting for them to leave.

Occasionally surveillance assignments can take unpredicted paths, and our client may wish for us to work overtime in order to capture more incriminating evidence. It is therefore essential that our agents are fully prepared for the length of surveillance that we are instructed to carry out, and potentially for even longer periods of time. 

Make sure that you are fully prepared with suitable food, drinks, and that all of your devices are ready and good to go. While caffeine products such as energy drinks might be tempting to help keep you awake, they usually result in comedowns where you might find it more difficult to maintain attention. We recommend avoiding the consumption of any caffeine products whilst conducting surveillance.  

12. Have a notepad and pen handy

This may seem like a trivial tip, but having the ability to quickly jot down notes can often prove beneficial during surveillance assignments. It’s important to record the times at which key events take place, or any small details which you might otherwise forget, as these points will prove to be critical information when later writing a report for the client.

Some surveillance agents even use voice recorders to record their notes. While voice recorders are usually quicker than manually writing onto a piece of paper, they should not be used in situations where the agent may be overheard by the subject or any onlookers.

13. Check your equipment

Before going out on a surveillance assignment, it would be wise to check all of your equipment. Check that all of the devices you might need are fully charged, and that they have enough memory available for the task at hand. Bringing spare memory cards can be useful in some cases, though in the current day and age high-capacity memory cards are very affordable and there shouldn’t be a need to switch out memory cards whilst conducting surveillance in most cases.

Remember to also check the time and date settings on your camera equipment to ensure that the timestamps are as accurate as possible.

14. Bring a change of clothes

In many surveillance cases (especially those which are taking place on foot), it can be a good idea to alter your clothing somewhat in order to make yourself less memorable to the subject.

It also pays to have spare clothing to ensure that you are comfortable, and suitably warm or cold, as the weather may dictate, during the assignment.

15. Keep binoculars or a monocular 

If you decide to carry a pair of binoculars, or a monocular, inside your vehicle, then you might find yourself using it surprisingly often. For example, if you are trying to observe a person’s clothing from a long distance, or identify a subject as they approach from far away, or even checking a vehicle’s license plate number.

Although surveillance agents should obviously seek to avoid being seen using binoculars or a monocular, they can come in useful and are a good tool to have on hand in many different settings. 

16. Fill up with fuel and use the rest room

Before arriving at a surveillance assignment, it would be a good idea to fill up on fuel and use the rest room, making sure that you are comfortable and prepared for whatever may occur during the assignment.

17. Maintain a safe distance

One of the most common mistakes made by rooky private detectives is not maintaining appropriate distance from the subject’s vehicle or property. Parking directly outside the subject’s property should be avoided in most cases… Most people will notice a vehicle they have not seen before parked directly outside their house, and a surveillance agent will seek to avoid this unwanted attention wherever possible. If a vehicle the subject has never seen before is instead parked outside their neighbour’s house, then it will be more plausible that the vehicle is visiting that particular house, and the subject will be less likely to remember the agent’s vehicle. 

This point is highly dependent on the circumstances, as there are cases where an agent will need to remain very close to the subject or their vehicle/property in order to conduct surveillance and secure the best possible evidence.

18. Consider whether more agents are needed

While a lone detective can prove very effective in most cases, there are certain cases which will require multiple agents working at the same time in order to secure the best possible outcome.

Detective agencies are sometimes reluctant to explain the need for additional agents to their clients… With cost a consideration for most people, they may not wish to spend extra money hiring more detectives. However, if we believe that using multiple agents will produce better evidence, then we feel it’s important that our client is fully aware of this. Continuing with one agent when more manpower is required may end up prolonging the investigation and costing more money in the long run.

19. Always bring a tripod

As private investigators, our clients rely on us to gather the highest quality evidence possible - we usually capture at least 720p or 1080p video, or even 4K video in some cases.

One of the most important considerations when shooting video is that the camera remains stable, using a tripod or an anti-shake gimbal can help to keep your camera steady and ensure that the footage is smooth and crystal clear.

Man holding a camera

Consider which positions you are likely to shoot video from in your vehicle and setup your camera on a suitable tripod or gimbal. 

20. Don’t forget your pee bottle!

It’s a matter of human nature that liquids which are consumed will eventually need to make their way out of the body. While conducting surveillance for multiple hours, the agent will typically seek to remain inside their vehicle and not leave for toilet breaks for the duration of that time. We will leave the rest of this particular point to the reader’s imagination! 

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