Friday, February 20, 2015

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

A dead giveaway

Tuesday May 12, 2009

I REFER to the article, Friendly Persuasion (StarTwo, April 29) and the opinion of Dr Coral Dando of Lancaster Univer­sity’s Department of Psychol­ogy. When asked if body language plays a role in determining if a person is lying, Dando said no. Even though British officers are taught a lot about body language, she said there is no such thing as a dead giveaway.
Her reply that body language does not play a role in determining if a person is lying and that there is no dead giveaway reveals that she does not know the subject of body language intimately.
Almost 3,000 years ago when a difficult problem of parental identity was presented to King Solomon, it was the inward emotions (body language) of the real mother who stopped the cutting of her baby into two – a dead giveaway – that made King Solomon’s judicial decision go down in history.
In his book, People Watching, Dr Desmond Morris says this about lying: “Even in the most self-aware faces, tiny micro-expressions leak the truth. These micro-expressions are caused by the face’s all-too-rapid efficiency in registering inner feelings. When a mood-change seeks expression, it can expect to be registered by the alteration in the set of facial muscles in much less than a second. The counter-message from the brain tells the face to “shut up”, which often fails to catch up with the primary mood-change message.
“The result is that a facial expression begins and then, a split second later, is cancelled by the counter-message. What happens on the face during the split-second delay is a tiny, fleeting hint of an expression. It is suppressed so quickly that most people never see it, but if watched for carefully during lying sessions, it can be detected and is then one of the best (dead giveaways) of deception clues.”
However, for the untrained observer, after special training, using slow-motion films, one can spot them in normal-speed films of interviews. So to a trained expert, even the face cannot lie. Therefore there are dead giveaways in body language that help in making a decision when no other evidence is available, and help narrow down the number of suspects in a persuasive interrogation.
Thus body language plays a very important role in determining when a person is lying and there are dead giveaways that can reveal to investigators a lie. For that reason, one should practise a holistic approach or the whole person concept in investigations.
Jackson Yogarajah 
Strategic Excellence Training
Kuala Lumpur

Reading body language

Jackson Yogarajah : ‘You cannot read a liar like a
mystery novel and there is
no definite way of detecting deception.’

Wednesday April 29, 2009

BODY language expert Jackson Yogarajah believes one can determine if a person is telling the truth by observing and interpreting her or his actions. However, he cautions that “you cannot read a liar like a mystery novel and there is no definite way of detecting deception.”
“But in body language, we know the rules and interpretation, and the psychology of a deceptive person,” said Jackson, who has trained personnel in the Royal Malaysian Police Force as well as other government agencies. He has also trained Customs officers in Indonesia.
He said in body language, a particular action does not have a defined meaning, unlike words. In looking for signs of deception, an investigator needs to look at a cluster of actions rather than base his conclusion on just one action.
“You have to see three or more actions in a pattern,” he said. “Even so, we don’t have a body language expert who can catch a liar 100% of the time. It’s already very good if it’s 80% of the time.”
The cluster or patterns of behaviour are then taken within their context, with an eye on the congruence of actions, whether the behaviours match the words. These are compared with what is known as a person’s baseline behaviour, that is, their natural behaviour in a comfortable environment.
“You talk to him about his family, his school, his work, and develop a comfortable rapport, and you will get to know him and his personality,” said Jackson. “Then you come to the deceptive side of him when you question him. That’s where your questioning techniques come into play, the type of questions you pose, and you see his reaction to them. And you base it on three or four of his actions, not just one. And only then can you reach a decision. But then again, it doesn’t mean you can see that he’s telling the truth for sure, because people can prepare themselves and deceive. There are so many things involved.”
He said neuroscientists have given us a clearer picture of what the unspoken signs and signals mean, that is, how the brain processes non-verbal cues. He feels it is important to teach investigators and interrogators to understand what it means to be human.
“Body language is a part of sociology, psychology, anthropology, psychiatry and human relations,” said Jackson. “So a good understanding of body language helps investigators to avoid, in certain cases, a judgmental attitude.”
Jackson believes in keeping the suspect or interviewee as comfortable as possible, so that his baseline behaviour can be determined.
“And then you can formulate your questions, use them and see the changes in his behaviour. You can compare that with his earlier behaviour. It can help you in making a decision when no other evidence is available,” he said.
“It is not about scaring a suspect or pressuring him,” he added. “It is about making a suspect comfortable, so that the signs would show, and the investigator can make the best possible conclusion.” – By Allan Koay

He Knows When You’re Lying

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 15, 2012 - 14:32   Malay Mail

“I WAS lying to you.”

Jackson Yogarajah (pic) tilts his head, but doesn’t show surprise or any changes in his facial expression. He seemed distant, uninterested.

“I was lying to you,” this reporter repeats again.

“I know,” came the curt reply. The reporter had just spent some 10 minutes narrating a fictional story of how he had given the police a miss while he was abusing drugs some four years ago. Jackson, however, does not buy the story from the word go. “You were not expressive when you told me. You missed out details. If that’s the truth, you wouldn’t miss out on details.”
The 61-year-old Jackson lives in a small home-cum-office in Cheras, Kuala Lumpur and does something that very few people do in Malaysia — he’s a body language expert and trainer.
The Kuala Lipis-born Jackson probably is best-known as the author of 55 Reasons Why Sharifah Aini Wasn’t Lying, a 2005 book in which Jackson used 55 body language cues to explain why the veteran singer wasn’t lying when she said she was attacked by two thugs opposite TV3’s headquarters in October the previous year.
The police had failed to find corroborative evidence that Sharifah was attacked and she was accused of fabricating the incident.

“I had to come out and defend her, because I saw that she was not lying. Many people thought she paid me to come up with a book.
But I always tell people, all she gave me was a cup of tea when I visited her at her home,” Jackson told The Malay Mail.He had based his conclusion that she was not lying after watching several of her TV interviews in which she had spoken about the incident.
Months after the book was released, which sold more than 3,000 copies, Jackson received a call from the US, from researchers interested in his book. He sent his book, which was written by extensively quoting and referring to the works of eminent psychologist Paul Ekman, via mail to the US.
Three years later, a new TV series called Lie to Me is produced by 20th Century Fox, which tells the story of Dr Cal Lightman, a body language teacher and trainer (portrayed by Tim Roth).
Ekman was the consultant for the series which ran from 2009 to 2011.
“Many people told me that it might not be a coincidence that the series was conceived after my work was sent there,” Jackson said.
He currently conducts courses for salesmen, agencies, university professors, and even policemen.
“I consider training policemen to be the biggest highlight of my career. I trained Special Branch officers under their invitation so it was no mean feat. They recognise my work,” he said.
He started conducting such courses in 1996 but it took six years before he could do it full-time and embracing it as a profession publicly does have its ups and downs.
“When I tell people what I do, they assume that I am a mind reader. They get uncomfortable.
But people are like books. You don’t read a book you are not interested in. If you are interested, then you flip the pages and try to read,” he said.
“But there are benefits too. I was at an airline ticketing agency once and when I asked the agent if there are other places where I can get the tickets for a cheaper price, she said no, but I knew she was lying.

I looked into her eyes. I went to the next agency and got a cheaper ticket.”  ….Bernama