Polygraph testing of persons who are suspects in a theft from a business are still legal and a viable tool in determining the culpability of a person in a theft as long as it is utilized in accordance with the Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988. The administering of these tests if done by a competent professional Polygraph Examiner is not a dangerous thing for a business to do legally. Just as in any profession there are those who profess to be competent, professional and legal who are not. First if you live in a State that licenses their Polygraph Examiners then determine if the examiner is indeed licensed. Some of our most populace states such as California New York and Florida require no license. In those States the business person should determine what polygraph professional organizations the examiner belongs to. If the Examiner is a member of the American Polygraph Association for example that person would have to have graduated from an accredited polygraph school and certain other criteria to be a member. There are people as in other professions who will make up accrediting organizations they belong to. Just because he conducts polygraph testing on television programs does not make them competent or professional.
Polygraph coupled with an investigation by the Company can show you things that you would never learn with just an investigation. The innocent employees will tell the Polygraph Examiner things during the test that he would never divulge during an investigation alone. The business owner will benefit enormously from the proper use of polygraph in unexplained losses. They will be able to manage loss prevention more effectively because of some of this newly learned information. The business may learn that a certain employee that they suspected was not what they thought and they may learn that a trusted employee should not be trusted.
Polygraph should not be feared by business but can be a tool that can be used effectively to aid the bottom line. There are many situations in which polygraph testing can aid businesses in determining losses of money or merchandise. A situation of a lost bank deposit is one that can be used to determine if the business has the problem or if it belongs to the bank. Certain situations involving businesses who send employees into private homes and an accusation of theft arises. There are places such as hospitals, hotels, nursing homes and many others where accusations of thefts of personal property arise.
There are certain restrictions set on the information that is learned during polygraph testing and if the business utilizes that competent professional who can guide them through this process their will be no problem. The business can’t terminate an employee for refusing to take the test. They can’t fire someone for failing a polygraph test. They can’t pass the information on to certain third parties. However the benefits realized from the polygraph in these situations will greatly out weigh any thing else