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How Accurate is the Polygraph Lie Detector Test?

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The polygraph, or lie detector test, is a popular method used to determine whether someone is telling the truth. It measures physiological changes such as blood pressure, breathing and skin conductivity that are allegedly associated with lying.

However, researchers have found that the accuracy of this technique is not very high. On average, people can only guess when a person is lying about 54% of the time.

Accuracy

Although a lie detector test isn’t 100% accurate, it can be very helpful in getting to the truth. It measures certain physical reactions to determine if someone is lying or not. However, there are ways to beat the test.

Some people may be more likely to pass a polygraph test than others. These include those who are naturally honest and those who have a good command of deception. On the other hand, those who are scheming or hiding something should expect to have more difficulty passing the test. I recommend this website for more Lie Detector Test.

Nevertheless, a lie detector test is still a useful tool for those who need to find out the truth quickly and efficiently. New schemes that claim to be able to detect lies are constantly being introduced, such as eye tracking and fMRI brain reading, but more research is needed before these technologies can be used in practical settings. This is especially true for high-stakes situations, such as criminal investigations and employment screening.

Convenience

Many people believe that they can beat a lie detector test by biting their tongues or sticking a tack in their shoes to increase perspiration levels. The truth is, though, that these methods don’t work. Instead, it is the person’s anxiety that may lead to elevated heart rate and blood pressure. These are the signs that the examiner is looking for.

In addition, the examiner’s biases and preconceptions can affect the results of a test. They can also unconsciously frame questions to elicit a false positive. Other factors that can affect accuracy include age and gender.

Despite their limitations, lie detector tests have proven to be useful for police and employers. They can help deter criminals from committing crimes if they think that they will be caught by the authorities. They can also be used to identify sex offenders. For these reasons, it is important that they are accurate. The best way to ensure that a lie detector test is accurate is to use one that has been scientifically tested and verified by experts.

Reliability

Despite their popularity in crime dramas and commercials, most psychologists agree that the polygraph test is not a reliable way to detect lies. The tests can be misleading and can even result in a false positive. For this reason, most states and the federal government ban their use as evidence in court trials.

A polygraph is only as accurate as the examiner, who must be fully trained, ethical, and honest. Anyone can buy a polygraph machine, but it’s not very useful without an experienced professional who knows how to properly administer the test.

In addition, there are many factors that can alter the results. For example, people who are very nervous or anxious may produce responses that the examiner interprets as deception. Some subjects may also take sedatives or apply antiperspirant to reduce sweating, which can also affect the results. In some cases, racial bias can also impact accuracy. According to Wired, a study of police department records showed that the success rates of various supposed lies vary wildly from one examiner to the next and black people are often “failed” more frequently.

Safety

While sensational crime reporting and Hollywood dramatizations may have led many people to believe that lie detector tests are a proven technology, those who study the science behind them have largely discredited them. Among those who have studied them is William Rutbeck-Goldman, a professor of law and former member of the Chicago police scientific crime detection laboratory who believes that they are ineffective.

Lie detector tests have trouble distinguishing the anxiety caused by lying from the normal physiological responses that occur during questioning. They also have difficulty pinpointing the exact questions that would elicit deception and are subject to a number of other errors, including misinterpretation of results and personal biases.

A skeptical 2003 report by the National Academy of Sciences found that “almost a century of research in scientific psychology and physiology provides little basis for the expectation that polygraph examination has extremely high accuracy.” Despite these problems, the tests are used extensively by police agencies for criminal investigations, in federal pre-employment screening, and by probation officers to supervise sex offenders.

 

Linda Barbara

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