Article Title

Trial By Ordeal? Polygraph Testing In Australia

UNDA Affiliation

yes

Abstract

A Polygraph or "lie detector" is "an instrument used to measure the autonomic nervous system responses in terms of blood pressure, pulse rate, respiration rate and galvanic skin response. In theory when a person tells a lie, fear of detection causes uncontrollable reactions in these physiological areas which the polygraph indicates with inked lines on a moving paper scroll". [1]

The use of polygraphs in sensitive areas such as the questioning of suspects in criminal cases, recruitment processes (eg by the FBI), investigation of insurance fraud and interrogation of current or potential employees raises certain ethical issues. In particular, the appropriateness of compelling, or coercing people to undertake such testing needs to be examined. The use of polygraphs also raises the broader question of whether we want to live in a society that is dominated by this type of testing.

Keywords

Peer-reviewed, Lie detectors, detection

Comments

E Law - Murdoch University Electronic Journal of Law, published by Murdoch University, School of Law, is an Open Access Journal, and may be accessed here

E Law - Murdoch University Electronic Journal of Law may be accessed from the National Library of Australia here