June 21, 2011

International private investigators are a relatively new concept and there seems to be much confusion surrounding the very definition of the service, and what makes a private investigator “international”. This article aims to clear up that confusion and also reveal the impressive growth that is occurring in this seemingly overlooked industry. Markets and economies and the world in general is now more global and international than ever before, due to globalization, the internet and overpopulation. International private investigators represent a new specialty which deals with the new risks in today’s world.

The definition of an international private investigator is a private investigator or private investigation firm which specializes in professional private investigation services involving one or more foreign countries. The key ingredient or element defining an international private investigator is the presence of offices or field investigators in multiple countries. This allows the firm or investigator to verify facts on the ground in the local area, utilizing local contacts and local records, and checking records in the local language and obtaining evidence first hand. In many cases, especially in developing countries, there is simply no database technology which can replace the international field investigator. He is your man on the ground.

International private investigators may conduct due diligence, international background checks, covert surveillance, criminal cases and missing person searches. Such private investigators require the specialized training which is often obtained through military or law enforcement, and field investigators should be licensed or legally set up to operate in the country where he or she operates. True professional private investigation services can be expensive, and are a world apart from the hundreds of misleading websites claiming to offer “background checks” for $49.99. Expect to pay more for a real service.

The industry is booming according industry observers and private investigation companies. Wymoo® International, a Florida-based professional private investigation firm specializing in international private investigation and background checks, reported a 60% growth rate in 2010. The company has achieved significant growth during the past 3 years, and admits that even competitors have done well. “Our corporate and individual clients continue to face increased risk from scams and fraud, and we identify and minimize that risk,” said John Wallace, Director of Background Checks. “With the rise of China and India, and the shifting of global economic powers, businesses will need to continue to reach out to new contacts and countries to survive, and those contacts need to be verified as part of due diligence.”

The global economy keeps sputtering along, and as it does, more criminals are seeking ways to make a quick buck. More companies and individuals are also taking more risks, trying to find profitable business deals and investments. In the eagerness to add to the bottom line, many are forgetting to do their due diligence. It is at these crossroads, where these groups meet that international private investigators play a key role by providing verification and investigation services. Statistics from the FBI and other law enforcement agencies confirm that fraud and scam cases are up. How far the trend will go is unknown. In the meantime, expect international investigators to stay in demand.

All the best,

S. Birch
© 2011 S. Birch

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