- What's on your mind? Recent advances in memory detection using the Concealed Information Test
- European Psychologist
- Volume | Issue number
- 19 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Lie detectors can be applied in a wide variety of settings. But this advantage comes with a considerable cost: False positives. The applicability of the Concealed Information Test (CIT) is more limited, yet when it can be applied, the risk of false accusations can be set a priori at a very low level. The CIT assesses the recognition of critical information that is known only by the examiners and the culprit, for example, the face of an accomplice. Large effects are obtained with the CIT, whether combined with peripheral, brain, or motor responses. We see three important challenges for the CIT. First, the false negative rate of the CIT can be substantial, particularly under realistic circumstances. A possible solution seems to restrict the CIT to highly salient details. Second, there exist effective faking strategies. Future research will tell whether faking can be detected or even prevented (e.g., using covert measures). Third, recognition of critical crime details does not necessarily result from criminal activity. It is therefore important to properly embed the CIT in the investigative process, while taking care when drawing conclusions from the test outcome (recognition, not guilt).
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