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Continued from page 2

Liar Liar --- How to Tell When Someone Is
Lying

March 18, 2008, last updated June 23, 2012

By Sara Ott, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist




By studying large groups of participants, researchers have
identified certain general behaviors that liars are more likely
to exhibit than people telling the truth. Liars tend to move
their arms, hands, and fingers less.  Liars also blink less than
truth-tellers do, and liars' voices can become more tense or
high-pitched.

Liars also speak with more pauses probably because of the
added mental effort they expend trying to remember what
they've already said and to keep their stories consistent.

Finally, liars have speech that is too "perfect".  People are
not tape recorders. Our memories are imperfect.  Normally,
when people trying to recall the truth, they make minor
mistakes in memory -- they often need to circle back, fill in
details they have forgotten. But liars are different. They
sound like tape recorders. Every detail is remembered. And
every detail is recited in perfect chronological order.  Liars
make fewer speech errors than those telling the truth, and
they rarely backtrack to fill in forgotten or incorrect details.

"Their stories are too good to be true," says Bella DePaulo of
the University of California, Santa Barbara, who has written
several reviews of the field of deception research.


Make Them Tell  It Backwards


Most good liars, contrary to popular opinion, do look you in
the eye. Most good liars are better at reading us than we are
at reading them. They know that we  expect them to shift
their eyes. So they discipline themselves over many years to
look you dead in the eye. But researchers from the
University of Portsmouth claim they have found a way to trip
up even expert liars.  They claim that the best way to spot a
lie is to make someone repeat his or her version of events in
reverse order.

In a £136,000 ($272,000) project, the researchers worked
on the theory that it takes more effort to make up a story
than it does to tell the truth. A subject asked to repeat a
concocted series of events in reverse order would be under
too much of a strain, they claimed, and would make mistakes.

Researchers asked 290 police officers to examine the
interviews of 255 students who were given true and false
details to use in their answers.

Traditional police interview methods were used in the study,
and in those that employed the reverse order tactics –
described as “cognitive load interviews” – the interviewer
asked the suspects to recall a series of events from the most
recent backwards.

Officers were less likely to detect the liars when traditional
methods were used in the interviews but were more likely to
detect lies when the subjects were asked them to recall
events in a reverse order.

The researchers believe that serial criminals are so well
versed in police interviews that they know how to dodge the
psychological tricks. But the reverse order method imposes
an additional mental stress on liars.

Professor Aldert Vrij, one of the researchers, said: “Those
[police officers] paying attention to visual cues proved
significantly worse at distinguishing liars from those telling
the truth than those looking for speech-related cues.

Here, in summary, and based on all the current research are
the 5 Best Tell-tale signs of a liar:



























1.  Watch the Eyebrows. Eyebrows coming together and
other micro-expressions such as flutters in the facial muscles
--tics-- indicate possible deception.  Since the involuntary
muscles which produce flutters and other micro-expressions
are outside liars' control, train your self to see when one
part of the face does not match what is going on in another
part of the face or do not match the words being spoken.
Here's an example. Ever seen a person smile at you with
their mouth but their eyes are as cold as fish?  That's a clue
of insincerity. Or notice that they stop moving their face and
neck, staying still and unanimated. That's a clue that they are
trying to remember what they are saying.  It helps if you
move around as they are talking, making it even harder for
them to manage their faces and match their voices are they
also try to remember what they are saying.

2.
Listen to the Voice.  Forget what you are seeing. Train
yourself to listen to pauses, changes in pitch as you watch
what they are saying.

3.
Tell It In Reverse.  Interrupt someone you suspect is
lying--can I get you something to drink, water?"-- and ask
them to tell you what happened "at the end". Then casually,
ask them, "and what happened just before that?". In other
words, try to get them to walk backwards, telling the story
in reverse. Watch their reaction. People telling the truth
won't get flustered. Liars do, because they will have trouble
keeping track of invented details, which they have
memorized in forward order only.

4.
Forget the Eyes. The old adage that liars can't look you in
the eyes is false. Liars almost always look you in the eyes.

5.
 Watch Out for Perfect Speech. Liars are good talkers.
They know how to tell a story --perfectly-- each time. Ever
notice how many politicians can recite a speech the same
way each time, never missing a beat, even pausing for effect
at the exact time, time after time. Not to say they are all liars
but the skill of repeating a story exactly the same each time
is one of the main ways to spot a liar.  


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