Why we can’t tell if someone is lying

Why we can't tell if someone is lying
We only have a 4% advantage
over chance at detecting liars.

Jason Voss from the CFA institute, an association of investment professionals, explains why even professionals involved in investing can’t tell lies from truth:

Since investing is like detective work surely you rely on body language or behavioural cues like blinking, or a lack of eye contact to assess someone’s honesty?

Actually no, in the most recent study evaluating more than 50 years of lying/deceitful behaviour research, Maria Hartwig and Charles Bond show that trained criminal justice professionals and amateurs alike only have a 54 per cent chance of detecting a lie using behavioural cues. They also demonstrate that most of the cues that people use, such as blinking or a lack of eye contact, are not strong indications of lying or deceitful behaviour, and in some cases are negatively correlated…

So what works? Intuition.

…intuition seems to be statistically effective at helping to reveal lies and deception. This is borne out by data showing that when people are successful at detecting lies they often attribute the success to the wrong cues, suggesting the assessment took place subconsciously.

Why it’s so tricky detecting a lie, Financial Times>>

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