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Surveillance & Privacy Invasion

Date: 03-01-05
Host: George Noory
Guests: Lee Lapin

Private investigator and electronic engineer Lee Lapin shared the latest tricks and techniques of surveillance used by the world's best agents and trackers. Optical surveillance, which is often legal, has had significant advancements in recent years. For instance, he cited how the DEA might set up a camera placed inside a plastic street cone to view through a person's window. Some cameras, he continued, have been reduced to the size of a dime and can go under doors or through a keyhole.

In terms of audio surveillance, many new bugs are cell phone-based, said Lapin. If a person wanted to know if their phone was bugged, he suggested buying a second phone of the same model and taking both apart to see if there was anything extra in the suspected phone.

He also talked about how private details about people are often culled through "pretexting," a now illegal method, where personal information is gained by someone under false pretenses. Lapin said he is currently working with computerized voice stress analysis which he noted can yield much more accurate information about a subject than polygraph tests.

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