July 15, 2014

Each year, we take a look at the top private investigation companies operating in different regions, and we take a close look at the regions and countries where demand for investigations services is high. In this review, our investigators and independent analysts reviewed the private investigation companies operating in the Philippines.  The Philippines remains a country where demand for private investigators is unusually high, thanks to high rates of infidelity, fraud and marriage scams.

Investigation companies considered

To be considered for our ranking, our team took a look at all licensed and registered business either based in the Philippines or operating in the Philippines, with the following criteria:

1) Primary service offered must be private investigation for individuals and/or corporate clients
2) Company must be registered and legal entity, and not just a sole proprietorship
3) Company must have a professional website verified by major trust marks, such as Verisign, Truste, McAfee or the Better Business Bureau, and offer SSL secure contact forms
4) Company must have been in business and constant operation for at least 5 years.
5) Company must have an established reputation with international presence, and a track record of providing quality service in the Philippines for foreign clients in the U.S., Australia, Canada and the U.K.
6) Company must provide and require ongoing training of investigation professionals, and hired investigators must have experience in law enforcement and/or military
7) Company must not have any complaints on file with the Better Business Bureau, U.S. Embassy, Philippines Securities Exchange Commission or other government agencies
8) Company must have a contact us page with real contact information
9) Company must offer secure online payment methods with credit card option

The final investigator selection process

Once the above criteria requirements were applied, the list of so-called investigators in the Philippines became very short!  Truth be told there are very few professional investigation companies, and most are locals with an old camera trying to make a living.  Others are scammers who set up websites and demand payments be sent via Western Union!  While some locals who operate as individuals do the work, they simply lack the professional training, resources and contacts in law enforcement and government to get the job done - not to mention the proper equipment which can be expensive.

Sure, untrained labor in the Philippines can be cheap, but just the same as when shopping for a doctor, attorney or engineer in Manila, for example, you'll need to spend more to get the job done right.  This is important in investigations given the confidential nature of the business.

PhilippinePI.com wins top spot for excellence

Besides having a stellar reputation and excellent feedback from clients in the United States, Australia, the U.K. and Canada, Philippine PI received high marks from our colleagues at the U.S. Embassy, Philippines National Bureau of Investigation, Philippines National Police and NSO (National Statistics Office).  To prove the point, we called the U.S. and Australian Embassy in Manila and asked who they recommended as a trustworthy investigation company for background checks and due diligence.  Both embassy representatives advised the same, Philippine PI.  Below are a few things that sets the company apart in a saturated market of private investigators and background check firms.

1) Verified by Truste, McAfee and the U.S. Better Business Bureau (on home page)
2) Company is a subsidiary of a major international investigation company, with excellent reputation
3) Secure payment options are offered using a credit card on a secure website
4) Significant amount of information online confirming company's reputation
5) Company offers due diligence, surveillance, background checks and surveillance
6) Emails and phone calls to the company were promptly and professionally responded to
7) Investigators were found to be highly trained and have law enforcement experience
Useful tips when choosing a professional

No matter who you choose, or what type of investigation you need in any country, always make sure you check for references, and don't be afraid to ask for some if you can't find any.  If the investigator won't have a 5 minute phone conversation to discuss your case, keep looking!

S. Birch
© 2014 S. Birch

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