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How to Extract a Confession Ethically

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posted on May, 6 2015 @ 03:12 PM
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Whether you believe your child is lying about school or extracting information from a high profile suspect, there are techniques that work and some that don't. The methods used and their effectiveness vary from person to person and sometimes you need a different approach.


In 2009 President Barack Obama convened the High Value Detainee Interrogation Group (HIG), made up of cognitive and social psychologists and other experts. This winter the HIG, led by Meissner, released its findings in a special issue of Applied Cognitive Psychology. Ethical interrogations are not only possible; their effectiveness is also robustly supported by research.

“More effective tactics rely on cooperation, which can be facilitated using principles of social influence that we know work very well.”

A byproduct of watching and recording how society responds to passive social manipulation has produced a new set of guidelines to use during interrogations. There has been enough data collected from law abiding citizens to develop a new hands off approach in discovering the truth.

Scientists are using social psychology to enhance interrogation methods without force


The entire HIG research portfolio since 2010 has included 28 researchers from the US, UK, Australia, Israel, South Africa, Sweden, and South Korea. Three quarters of these are from academic institutions. So far, more than 60 research studies have been conducted in support of the HIG research program. Assessing current methods, including the interrogation approaches and techniques described by the 2006 Army Field Manual 2-22.3, enables researchers to identify how, why, and when an approach does or does not work, and establishes a baseline against which science-based techniques can be developed.

Passive social engineering has yielded amazing and somewhat expected results while studying how we react to changes in our environment. This reason alone is why I like my privacy and try to fly below the radar as much as possible. Having nothing to hide is no excuse for becoming a statistic.

I do not consent to being poked and prodded mentally in order to contribute to their “research”. The data becomes nothing more than a set of guidelines to extract more capital and reduce our freedoms. Keep me OUT of your little experiment.

Center for Law & Human Behavior


An example of the Center’s work is its effort to improve our understanding of interviewing methods in the human intelligence collection context, principally through theoretically-grounded, empirical studies of human communication, memory, social influence and related behaviors.


The creation of HIGs shifted power from the CIA and FBI into the hands of the White House. While normally operating overseas, the Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair said the group would eventually conduct interrogations in the US. I wonder how many high profile patriots they have their eyes on?


Though developed for law enforcement, there is no reason to think these strategies will not also work on the mendacious teens, spouses and co-workers in your life if you need to get to the bottom of something.

How these techniques match up during a high profile interrogation is yet to be seen. What they say they've learned is a step in the right direction if successful. Some of what they observed has been used in the past, but has taken a back seat to getting physical. Below are some of the HIG’s most interesting findings...

An online brochure of their research

1. Build rapport


Think of it as just “good cop.” Researchers have found that coming across as empathetic causes interrogation targets to open up more than when the interrogator is cold and accusatory. Many of the other techniques described in the journal depend on having a cooperative target, making this step all the more important. “The first thing you have to do is develop cooperation, rapport,” Meissner says. “Once you have a cooperative person, the question is, How do I get all the info from them that I can?”

2. Fill in the blank


To get that info, instead of asking direct questions, tell your target a story about what he or she did, leading the person to believe you already know what happened. As you provide the narrative, the guilty party will then supply details and corrections. This is called the Scharff technique, named for its developer, Hanns Scharff, a German interrogator during World War II. The technique was shown to elicit more information than direct questioning in a 2014 study. People interrogated using this method also tend to underestimate how much they are sharing.

3. Surprise them


People who are interrogated often know they are under suspicion, so they practice their answers ahead of time. In addition, liars are under high cognitive strain as they try to keep their story straight and at the same time act calm and collected. If you ask them something unexpected, they often stumble when put on the spot—enabling you to catch them in a lie.

4. Ask for the story backwards


In contrast to what most people believe, truth tellers are more likely to add details and revise their stories over time, whereas liars tend to keep their stories the same. “Inconsistency is really just a fundamental aspect of the way memory works,” Meissner says. A technique that interrogators use to capitalize on that quirk is called reverse telling—asking people to recall events backward rather than forward in time. This strategy has a double effect: For truth tellers, it makes recall easier—in another HIG study, reverse telling produced twice as many details as did recounting chronologically. For liars, the task becomes harder when put in reverse; they become more likely to simplify the story or contradict themselves.

5. Withhold evidence until the crucial moment


In a study last March, when people were confronted with potential evidence of their wrongdoing early in the interview, they either clammed up and adopted an extremely hostile posture or immediately spilled their guts, depending on the individual. Rather than risking the former, the researchers advised truth seekers to take a middle path, alluding to evidence without making any direct accusations—at least not right away.

Nobody should have to harm another individual for any reason unless they are trying to protect themselves. When people are dying in police custody, the importance for an effective hands off solution to deal with an individual needs to be created and upheld.

What we have seen or heard is nowhere near the level of torture some have received. You will never stop what you don’t know, but it’s nice to see they are thinking about better ways to get the job done.

I wonder how this softer approach would effect the real hardened criminals? At what level do we take the gloves off and switch to a more “persuasive” technique?

edit on 6-5-2015 by eisegesis because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 6 2015 @ 03:18 PM
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The best way to keep a secret is to not know it.....so anything of REAL value is locked away even from those that possess it. But it is there to guide them in the way.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 03:29 PM
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a reply to: eisegesis

All you'd have to do to me is threaten me with torture and I'm spilling my guts. I will talk your ears off and hope for the best....


The rest? Yawn....



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 03:37 PM
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a reply to: eisegesis

Do any of these really help when the person doesn't want to talk at all?

They maybe help when a person has to actively defend themselves, but not when a person is passively resisting via not telling you where the large explosive they put in the Kremlin is.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 03:47 PM
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a reply to: Pinke

At that point you offer them a cupcake and a back massage.

It helps loosen them up.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 05:05 PM
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a reply to: eisegesis

Seems to me this is, essentially, a variation on the Wicklander method of interviewing and interrogation. Wicklander has been around for quite a while. It's essentially the good cop routine, while the Reid Method is the bad cop in that it is a far more adversarial technique.

Both are decent techniques, but both have also seen their share of criticism.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 05:35 PM
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a reply to: eisegesis

Thanks for this, at least they are trying.

But I imagine a world where you don't go around creating enemies in the first place.

A world of equality, of mutual respect, of life, of liberty and of the pursuit of happiness, as inalienable rights.

But, nah, It's not like that is written into the Declaration of Independence and foundational to the government.

Oh, wait!...




posted on May, 6 2015 @ 05:49 PM
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a reply to: eisegesis
I think your vid of that scene in the Lego movie says it all and then some. On a side note, I may have to watch that movie seems entertaining.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 06:40 PM
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originally posted by: chr0naut
a reply to: eisegesis

Thanks for this, at least they are trying.

But I imagine a world where you don't go around creating enemies in the first place.

A world of equality, of mutual respect, of life, of liberty and of the pursuit of happiness, as inalienable rights.

But, nah, It's not like that is written into the Declaration of Independence and foundational to the government.

Oh, wait!...


My pursuit of happiness or a manifestation of it for that matter is bound to offend somebody. I believe in borders, but I don't believe in walls. Unfortunately, the world we live in requires them. What you do behind that wall is none of my business.

In the future there will be a regulatory set of questions that must be answered if you are deemed suspicious. Whether they are disguised as homeland security or local law enforcement, they will eventually all operate under the same set of guidelines.

As Pinke pointed out, not saying anything works great, at the risk of having your tongue cut out under certain circumstances. I know that sure drove my mother crazy. Good thing she would never do such a thing.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 06:43 PM
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The tv series 'Lie to me' has been really interesting when it does come to spotting deception and lies. While I am still not skilled in picking up micro expressions or the very fast facial expressions that show what someone is feeling, It does look like an important piece for those wanting to get past the lies quicker.

Due to the inherent nature of deception it is unlikely that any system will be 100% effective in spotting it.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 06:49 PM
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a reply to: kwakakev

It's not 100% effective, no. Each person has their own "cues" about truth and deception. What gives one person away in one interview may not be present at all in the next. There's a long list of things that people might do, but might not, when engaging in deception.

The key is to establish a baseline for each individual, while remembering that baseline may do jack squat for you in the end. You're spot on in that it isn't infallible. That's where the skill level of the interviewer/interrogator comes in to play. There's a human element on both sides.
edit on 6-5-2015 by Shamrock6 because: Autocorrect fail. Hard.



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 07:05 PM
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originally posted by: galadofwarthethird
a reply to: eisegesis
I think your vid of that scene in the Lego movie says it all and then some. On a side note, I may have to watch that movie seems entertaining.

It should still be in Redbox if you're near one. If not, it should be pretty easy to find online if you leave your conscious in another room.

The movie is basically a parody to all things redundant and meaningless that people think enrich their lives. Definitely a fun movie.

Here's some codes I use to get free legal movies.

Redbox Codes for FREE Movie Rentals 2015



posted on May, 6 2015 @ 07:14 PM
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It has been proven over and over again that torture (or, ahem, 'advanced interrogation techniques') DOES NOT WORK. It is not a more effective means of extracting usable information than traditional interrogation. The problem is, skillful interrogation is a tool than only a very smart man can use. It's a smart guy's tool. Dumb guys use hammers (stop me if you've heard this one before, lol) and if your favorite tool is a hammer, then every problem can start to look like a nail.

Hammering a nail is satisfying. So, one imagines, is torture when the torturer believed that the torturee was somehow involved in 9/11.
edit on 5/6/2015 by Monger because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 11 2015 @ 02:44 PM
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a reply to: eisegesis
I watched the move some days ago. Its pretty funny, the whole lego-batman thing was hilarious, that part were he showed up to save them in the batwing and was smooching with the girl, priceless. Or the part were he stole the millennium falcons hyperdrive engine from Han Solo, Chewy and company... Hilarious. It gets a bit to melodramatic at the end, but ya its a fun movie.




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