Can you pretend you're a private investigator?

Training as a detective

There is still no state-approved training path for the detective profession

If you want to become a private detective, you can take various courses and seminars. Some only last a week, others up to two years. Many courses can also be completed by distance learning. At the end of the training, you receive a certificate that attests to different qualifications. The most important contact points for detailed questions about training as a detective can be found at the Central Office for Training in the Detective Trade (ZAD) or at the IHK. At these institutions you also have the opportunity to take exams and get a detective's certificate.

Anyone whose dream is to become a detective should be aware that the requirements are very high when aiming for a successful career. Reliability, punctuality, discretion, willingness to learn, quick perception, good memory, knowledge of human nature, technical expertise, perseverance, psychological stability and flexibility are the qualities that a budding detective should bring with him. In order to operate the trade in Germany, private detectives must be German citizens, have no previous convictions or “mountains of debt” and be over 18 years old, although recommendations from the industry tend to only work independently from the age of 20.

Since a detective not only spends his time following suspicious people waiting to secure evidence, but also has contact with many people, he should be articulate and be able to express himself clearly. Communication is one of his most powerful weapons for obtaining important information. During his training he should have gained extensive knowledge of legal issues, as detectives sometimes do their work in the gray area. The following applies to his investigations: Only legally obtained evidence may be used in court. So that the research can end in a complete line of evidence, he must be able to document his findings in detail. For your own protection, courses in self-defense are recommended. If you want to work as a business detective, industry knowledge is very important.

Requirements for the detective profession

Because of these prerequisites, it is clear that detectives are often people who previously worked for the police, the German armed forces or the Federal Border Police. It is also helpful if you are already familiar with the technical devices that are used in detective work. Those who can handle video systems, computers, GPS systems and, above all, cameras have an advantage. During an assignment, a private detective can end up in a wide variety of locations. He should therefore absolutely have a driver's license and a vehicle. It must be a matter of course for detective trainees to continue their education. This is the only way to stay up to date and to process orders successfully.

If you are really serious about your career aspirations, it is advisable to read the specialist literature carefully. In order to test whether the detective profession remains the dream job in practice, an internship in a detective agency is recommended. This can potentially save a lot of money on seminars and courses.

If you are interested, please do not hesitate to contact us.