Private Investigations and Personal Security/Retraining to be a PI



After a long illness(since recovered), I am now considering a career as a PI, either in the UK or Austria - I'm 40. I gather that laws are similiar for both countries and intend to do a long-distance course for PIs before either joining a firm or going it alone. There are 3 such courses offered by 3 schools in the UK. all 3 staffed by current PIs. Here is the list of the 3 relevant websites. I did check and there are now some SIA requirements enforced by UK law which at least 2 of the 3 UK-based schools mention they include in their course. Other than that, UK laws do not seem to prevent people becoming PIs, that is, there is no US-like requirement to have been in the military or police-force etc., so my lack of experience in such fields is no bar to becoming a PI.

Anyway, I would like for you to give your verdict on the 3 following UK websites/companies re their possibilities/eventual likelihood of employment etc.:-

There's also a US-based international PI course I might consider doing as well:-

Any advice appreciated, thanks!


All of the schools/courses which you provided URL's to seem to be legitimate.  I am familiar, however, with the Global School of Investigation materials (, having read them in the 1980's.  If they have been updated since that time I could recommend starting there.  As always exercise the maxim of "caveat emptor," Latin for "let the buyer beware."  Make sure that the materials fit your particular needs and budget.

In my opinion, other than searching for credentialing you should research licensing and then acquire the license.  Go to and browse the books on the genre (private investigation) which provide material and instruction.  See, for example: "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Private Investigating, Third Edition," by Steven Brown.  There are so many other good ones I will not continue recommending.  In addition, you must read books on how to run your investigation office as a business.  See, for example:  "How to Open & Operate a Financially Successful Private Investigation Business: With Companion CD-ROM," by Michael Cavallaro.

In short you should read and learn as much as possible about the industry.  There is no easy way to "break into" the business.  Make a concerted effort to research the industry, and more important, how to make it pay for you.  It is a broad spectrum but you will meet with success if you are serious.  Remember the proverb of Chinese Philosopher Lao-tzu, "a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."  I think you are off to a good start.    

Good luck!  

Private Investigations and Personal Security

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Jeffrey Hauck


I would welcome the opportunity to answer questions about the business operations, duties, and ethics of the modern professional private detective/private investigator.


Criminologist. Professor of Criminal Justice. Licensed Private Detective with expansive clientele base encompassing hundreds of cases. Donates resources and time to the Children's Rescue Network in Orlando, FL.

Associate of Science; Bachelor of Arts; Master of Science, Doctor of Jurisprudence Degree.

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