Have you come across the term “Lie Detection Test”? Was it a detective television series? Or do you know someone who has gone through a lie detection test for an interview? So, what is a “Lie Detection Test”? As the name suggests, lie detection test, also known as the polygraph test helps to determine the if the examinee is answering the questions truthfully or not. Although it is commonly known as lie detection test, the other name for it is “Polygraph Test”. The polygraph machine helps to record your physiological readings.
So, how does it work? The examinee is asked various questions by the examiner. There are various techniques of questioning that are used. “Control Question Test” or CQT and the “Guilt Knowledge Test” or GKT are the two most popular and widely used techniques of questioning. The polygraph machine measures the rate of your heartbeat, breathing rhythms and drop or increase in blood pressure. The physiological changes that will be recorded will determine if the person who is being questioned is telling the truth or not. The record is taken in the form of a graph.
Is it accurate?
Now comes the question that is asked most often. Is the test always accurate? Is there any possibility that people can get away with lying and cheating on lie detector test? About the accuracy of a lie detector test, it has always been a controversial topic. Many believe that lie detectors can be easily fooled with deception ending up giving you wrong results. It is a fear detector that records your reaction to the questions asked. It is believed that people can control their fear and work on it. Critics believe that a polygraph test is not accurate more than seventy percent of time.
Can you count on it?
With growing usage of polygraph tests in the criminal courts, it is very important to know if the results that are recorded can be counted on. It actually depends on how experienced the examiner is because the tricks lie in the questions asked. Before the test starts, the examiner asks you to talk about yourself and asks your point of view or your side of the story on the charges against the examinee. Later on, four to six sensors are connected to your body in alignment with the polygraph machine. This time whatever you say will be recorded.
Can you actually cheat?
The examiner will ask you the irrelevant questions and the relevant questions as well. Your reactions while answering both and the physiological changes during the answering would be recorded. Now, if there is a novice examiner, it may be easy to trick. But, things could be slightly difficult with an experienced person. Even if the examinee tries extremely hard to suppress the emotions and movement, he or she might not be able to deceive the examiner. If the examiner realizes or even get a slightest hint of deception from the other end, he could be even harder to you. Put simply, the examiner will make it pretty difficult for the examinee to escape the questions with easy answers.
In fact, if your lie detector official realizes that you have underlying motives, he can even put forward questions directly connected to the issue. No matter how hard one tries, it gets really difficult to pass the direct questions without any reactions. The polygraph test determines even the slightest of changes that will occur so it gets harder to deceive it. Hence it basically depends on the questioner and the tricks he uses to put forward his questions.
On the hind sight, like we stated before, it might be easier to deceive the polygraph test if the examiner is a novice. The examinee might know the tricks of controlling their physiological changes. All they should do is maintain calm and avoid any sort of uneasiness while replying to some relevant sets of question. A new examiner often fails to read the signs which is when one can get away with the deception.
In conclusion, it is pretty much impossible for any person who is being questioned to lie or cheat during a lie detection test if he is actually guilty. The minimal possibility of deception can also be avoided if the examiners do their homework on their questioning techniques and study of body language.