Wednesday, November 14, 2007

How would you feel?

When I talk to people about their plans for working in an investigative role I'm often surprised by how little thought they've given to the type of material they might be expected to deal with. Often their concerns are related solely to whether or not they have the technical skills necessary to search for and collect evidence. However, I really think it makes sense to think carefully about exactly what kind of evidence they might be searching for and exposed to, especially that which involves images and video. Some material which can be uncovered during an investigation can be harrowing and disturbing, how would you feel if you needed to deal with such evidence, perhaps even on a daily basis?

When I mention this, occasionally the person I'm talking to says that only the police have to deal with such material and that if they were working in a corporate role there's little chance of them being exposed to something of this nature. Of course it's true that law enforcement (both police officers and civilians working for the police) are required to handle material which others would find repugnant, but in my experience corporate investigators run a small but significant risk of uncovering material of this nature too, even if it is not the focus of their original investigation.

I'll talk more tomorrow about how we deal with this type of scenario.

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