The California P.I. Hacking Scandal: Why You Need the Right Private Investigator.
Private investigators are trusted to do the right thing, both by their clients and the people and groups they are investigating. Unfortunately, the nature of private investigative work means that some investigators are tempted to skirt the law and use illegal practices, in the interest of gaining as much business as they can from potential clients. The right California P.I. is an important choice.
This month, there was a troubling example of exactly this type of situation involving two private investigators in the Bay Area: Nathan Moser, a former San Francisco police detective and owner of Moser & Associates, and Peter Siragusa of Siragusa Investigations.
Nathan Moser and Peter Siragusa: A Cautionary Tale of Bay Area Private Investigators
On January 15, the northern California district of the United States' Attorney's Office announced indictments against a group of men, including Siragusa and Moser as well as Trent Williams of Martinez, CA and Sumit Gupta, who is a resident of Jabalapur, India. These men were charged with several different crimes, including conspiracy, accessing a protected computer, and interception of electronic communications.
According to the indictment, Moser and Siragusa hired Williams and Gupta to illegally gain access to email and Skype accounts, with the goal of gaining information that would be beneficial to Moser and Siragusa's clients. The defendants allegedly installed a keylogger on victim computers, which would record every keystroke on the computer without alerting the person using it.
In this particular case, the San Jose Mercury News reports that the victims were technological companies located in Santa Clara and Utah. The company who hired Siragusa and Moser, ViSalus, is a competitor of the companies that were victimized. Carlo Pacileo, the director of security at ViSalus, was also charged in the indictment.
We have seen stories like these time and time again. The fact is, there is a demand for these types of services by people who are willing to break the law to spy on people, whether it is to gain a competitive edge in business or to catch a cheating spouse. When these people find the right unethical private investigators out there who care more about making money than following the laws, the end result is a situation like the one that the men involved in this case find themselves in. Fortunately, there is a way to avoid this kind of issue: hiring a licensed California P.I. who you can depend on for honest, lawful service, whether you are hiring them for personal or business reasons.
Why Hiring the right Private Investigator is Critical
You might think that you don't have anything to worry about, since you don't plan on retaining a private investigator who will use the kinds of illegal tactics that Siragusa and Moser employed. Sadly, this isn't enough to stop you from getting in trouble as a result of a private investigator's work. Even if you aren't aware that a request you made to a private investigator was illegal, you are still on the hook for their actions. If they break the law in an effort to find out information or conduct surveillance on someone that you asked them to track, you could face serious repercussions.
There is only one way to avoid this kind of situation: do your homework when selecting a private investigator. Whether you are hiring an investigator to find a missing person or do a complete background check on someone in your life, be sure that you hire a licensed private investigator with integrity who will not have to break the law to get the job done.