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Voice Stress Analysis
Published 20th November 2020

Over history, there have been endless investigative techniques, trialled and tested by scientists and researchers, that aim to seek and find the ‘truth’. Voice stress analysis (VSA) is a modern technology that allows law enforcers and security companies alike to determine whether someone is lying or not.

Computer Voice Stress Analyser (CVSA) is a software program designed to measure changes in voice patterns caused by stress or a physical effort to hide deceptive responses. The program works by interpreting the micro tremors in vocal patterns into graphs, with the idea that the non-verbal, low frequency content of the voice conveys information about the physiological and psychological state of the subject.

Typically, when a person is under stress, they enter a ‘flight, fright or freeze’ mode, causing their throat muscles to tighten and, in turn, affects their vocal cords. The CVSA records the subject’s voice using a microphone while they are asked a series of questions. The ‘high stress’ is seen as an indication of deception.

Benefits of using CVSA are that it is more hygienic (as it doesn’t involve any physical attachments), subject friendly (the subject is free to move around) and less intimidating to the subjects. An unlimited number of questions can be asked and factors such as alcohol, drugs, age and health do not impact the results. Lastly, the resulting charts both show and quantify the stress patterns.

Although there are claims that a VSA is more reliable than a criminal record, this type of test should not be performed on its own but rather act as supporting evidence alongside normal procedures.

Broubart, being in the security and detection of deception industry, has incorporated CVSA into some of our screening applications. These include pre-employment assessments and incident investigations to name a few. We believe that by including this technology amongst our other standard procedures and assessments not only serves our best interests as an efficient, reliable team but also the best interests of our clients, who can rest assured we are taking all the necessary steps to be your number one security solution.

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