- You can buy a burner phone with cash to keep the investigators from tracing your calls but when they are watching the phone activity of friends and relatives they pretty quickly figure out your new number.
- Unless you are subpoenaed, you don't need to answer investigator's questions. Can I come in? No. Can I talk to you about X? No. But people are too nice and let the investigators in and start talking to them and their voice and body language gives away the fact that they are lying about having contact with the hunted people. Even worse is when the investigators talk to kids who inadvertently spill the beans (this is how one couple got caught when the young daughter told the investigators that her mom has two best friends...which lead them directly to the best friend who wasn't on the run with the mom but was helping out her two friends. Busted).
- Speaking of cooperative people, the investigators wanted to stake out a house where they thought one couple would end up at and the neighbor was so helpful he let the investigators set up their cameras in a bedroom that faced the suspect's house. Never underestimate how "helpful" friends and neighbors will be to investigators.
- Rental car fleets have GPS trackers built in. This could have got one of the couples caught but they were brilliant in their idea to have a friend rent the car then list one of the couple as an added driver to mislead investigators. The investigators followed the rental car around for miles not realizing that the friend was driving just to throw them off the track of the couple who were no where near the rental car.
- Investigators cracked one guy's email account with ease by guessing the correct answers to the secret questions (favorite sports team? just check the guy's Facebook page for posts related to sports. Simple).
- One couple stayed off the grid by heading off trail in the wilderness for more than nine days. Good for them.
- Cell phone calls can be listened in to.
- Speaking of chatty friends, the investigators hijacked one of the couple's Facebook page and put a "wanted" poster for the couple on their page. They then used people's responses to determine who their friends were and this made the friends persons of interest.
- One team thought they would be particularly clever and snail mail letters to friends and family with instructions on how to log into a new email account. They figured they could communicate with friends and family if emails were written and kept in a draft folder and never sent so they couldn't be tracked. They didn't know that the USPS takes a photo of every letter sent (called mail cover) and that this information can be sent to investigators as a way to track criminal activity.
- One set of investigators used a ruse, a common investigative technique. They told one couple's friend that they were there to help the couple escape so they couldn't be found. The lady didn't fall for it but the investigator was quite convincing.
- One team deleted all of their info from their laptops and cell phones. Unfortunately for them, deleted files stay on the device until they are overwritten so this made their deleted information really easy to find for investigators.
- Two teams were caught this week simply because they reached out to friends and family for help. Investigators are continually watching friends and family simply because it's one of the easiest ways to catch those on the run who at some point will need help. If you really want to not be found, stay completely away from anyone remotely connected to you.
Thursday, January 26, 2017
More Tips from Hunted
Last night's episode of Hunted offered several more good tips for those on the run...