Every month, we work with dozens of clients across the United States. We assist them with several cases – from infidelity, to child custody, skip tracing, witness locates, and more. There are, however, some clients that we cannot assist. We are in the business of solving problems, uncovering facts, proving something took / did not take place. But we are not in the business of breaking the law. While some of the cases we list below do not necessarily happen all the time – they do happen about once or twice per month. Some of these cases are simply illegal or simply impossible to accomplish.
1 – Hacking
Hacking is illegal, regardless of what you find online, hacking into a social media account, email account, or phone is illegal. Not only would we risk losing our license, but we (and our client) could end up in jail. Are there investigators who do this? Yes – there are investigators who violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act – Violations of some parts of the CFAA are punishable by up to ten years, 20 years, and even life in prison. So, is it worth it? Not for us.
Even if we could – which we cannot. Even if it was legal – which is not. Even if we had the resources – which we do not. Hacking into an account would be an unethical practice. If you are looking for facts, fishing for incriminating information, or need evidence that something is taking place behind your back, there are better ways to accomplish that. Hacking is not it.
2 – Tracking down a “lost love”.
This is something that we do for our clients, but we have a process in place to ensure their safety. When a client hires us to find a person, we need to make sure the reason to find them is legitimate. Just to “keep tabs” or “see how they are doing” is simply not good enough. But let us assume for a second that we do go through with the process – when we track them down, we must contact them first to see if they want their location to be revealed. They must give us their consent before we put you two in contact with one another. If they decline to be contacted, we get their signature, turn in our report, and tell you that they wish to not be contacted. There is simply nothing we can do about that.
There are legal reasons to track someone down – missing heirs, missing people, skip tracing, or witness locates. We can also work with attorneys to track down missing people. As far as tracking down a person for a public client, it is not something we do for every person.
3 – Cell Phone Pinging
Also known as cellphone locates, or cellphone triangulation. Ultimately, it comes down to tracking the location of a phone. Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do to track down a cell phone. There are certain cases where a cellphone could be tracked down, but that comes with regulation.
Cell phone locates are helpful to track down missing persons, but law enforcement would more than likely be the people you need to contact for a cell phone locate. If you own the cellular device, you may contact your phone company to track down your phone’s location. Pursuit Magazine has a great article from 2008 regarding Locating Mobile Phones: https://pursuitmag.com/locating-mobile-phones-through-pinging-and-triangulation/ – the laws have certainly changed – but we can not assist our clients in tracking them down.
4 – Phoneline Tapping
This is like cellphone tracking. Tapping phone lines is simply illegal. Unless you are the FBI or a law enforcement agency, this simply can not be done legally.
We simply do not entertain this type of case for any of our clients.
5 – Breaking and Entering
We are investigators. Our job is to collect information for our clients. In essence, we become their eyes and ears in the field. That does not include breaking into a residence, building, or vehicle to pull information or records OR plant information or records.
We are contacted about once a month to see if we can break into an apartment and plant hidden cameras, or to extract some sort of document or file. As far as we know, there is no license in the world that gives us the right to break into a building.
As investigators, our job is to gather facts and evidence the right way: Legally, and Ethically. If you have questions about anything listed above – please, do not hesitate to reach out to us. We may not be able to offer / conduct the type of service you are looking for, but we can help you find the evidence you need – the right way.