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Polygraph Cape Town
Polygraph Cape Town
OF&A Cape offers professional polygraph testing services in and around Cape Town, South Africa. OF&A Cape is a well established professional South African investigation consulting company specialising in polygraph testing and examinations by internationally trained examiners, as well as private investigations services. Our polygraph testing services are primarily focussed in and around the greater Cape Town area.

What is a Polygraph test?
The term "polygraph" literally means "many writings". The name refers to the manner in which selected physiological activities are simultaneously recorded. The test is used to verify a person's truthfulness, and is often called a lie detector test. It is important to understand what a polygraph examination entails. A polygraph instrument will collect physiological data from at least three systems in the human body. Convoluted rubber tubes that are placed over the examinee's chest and abdominal area will record respiratory activity. Two small metal plates, attached to the fingers, will record sweat gland activity, and a blood pressure cuff, or similar device will record cardiovascular activity. Involuntary physiological reactions when a subject is lying are then recorded by the instruments, and interpreted by the examiner. A typical polygraph examination will include a period referred to as a pre-test, a chart collection phase and a test data analysis phase. In the pre-test, the polygraph examiner will complete required paperwork and talk with the examinee about the test. During this period, the examiner will discuss the questions to be asked and familiarize the examinee with the testing procedure. During the chart collection phase, the examiner will attach the instruments to the examinee, and administer and collect a number of polygraph charts.
Polygraph Cape Town
A combination of relevant and irrelevant questions are asked, and the same questions are asked more than once, in order to verify the responses.

Following this, the examiner will analyze the charts and render an opinion as to the truthfulness of the person taking the test. The examiner, when appropriate, will offer the examinee an opportunity to explain physiological responses in relation to one or more questions asked during the test. It is important to note that a polygraph does not include the analysis of physiology associated with the voice. Instruments that claim to record voice stress are not polygraphs and have not been shown to have scientific support.
Polygraph Cape Town
• Polygraph examination
• Pre-employment
• Pre-employment vetting
• Surveillance
• Investigation
• Security Surveys
Polygraph Testing
The OFA Warranty
OFA maintains the highest standard of integrity, professionalism and dedication in absolute confidentiality.

Research is performed discreetly, if necessary, without disruptive intrusion upon the subject of colleagues.

Premature or unwanted disclosure of all activities is eliminated by competent management and experienced staff.
Can an employee be compelled to undergo a polygraph test?
It is against the constitution of South Africa to compel a person to undergo a polygraph examination unless he or she consents to it. The consent must be in writing.

The individual should be informed that:
  • The examinations are voluntary.
  • Only questions discussed prior to the examination will be used.
  • He/she has the right to have an interpreter, if necessary.
  • Should he/she prefer, another person may be present during the examination, provided that person does not interfere in any way with the proceedings.
  • No abuse, threats or discrimination will be allowed.
What is the status of Polygraph Tests at the CCMA?
Qualified polygraphists have been accepted as expert witnesses whose evidence can be tested for reliability. The duty of the commissioner is to determine the admissibility and reliability of the evidence.

Polygraph tests may not be regarded as implying guilt, but may be regarded as an aggravating factor, especially where there is other evidence of misconduct. In other words, the polygraph test is used in support of other evidence to arrive at a balance of probability decision. Similarly, a refusal to submit to a polygraph test could give rise to an adverse inference about motives.

In the case of the Metal and Electrical Workers Union of SA on behalf of Mbonambi, and S Bruce CC, an employee was dismissed after being found guilty of stealing money and a cellphone. He was the only one of 11 employees polygraph tested whose answers indicated deception.

The arbitrator affirmed the approach taken by previous tribunals - that the outcome of polygraph tests may be taken into account when there are other grounds for believing the employee has been dishonest. In this case, the other grounds were that a witness placed the employee at the scene of the theft at the relevant time, and that the arbitrator found the employee's evidence to be both inconsistent and dishonest. The corroborating evidence of the polygraph was found to be relevant. On a balance of probabilities, the employee was held responsible for the theft.

However, certain points must be kept in mind if polygraphs are to be used:

• Tests should be conducted by a qualified person using accepted procedures;
• Employees should be physically and mentally fit;
• Employees' consent is needed;
• The process and reasons for the tests should be fully explained to participating employees

The recent case law, then, would seem to support the continued use of polygraph testing as an investigative tool for employers faced with dishonesty, as well as its supportive evidentiary role in disciplinary hearings.
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