It’s the end of the decade, a decade that has pretty much coincided with the founding of my business in August 2009 and the start of my blogging career, with our first post being published  in February 2010.

Last week, we posted about the most popular blog posts from the decade.

This week, I’ve reached back to find some of the stories and ideas that made this blog—and in some cases, my career—come alive.

Posts that have had the most impact on me personally.

These blog posts aren’t going to win any popularity contests. In fact, if I added up all of the traffic from these posts, it still wouldn’t be as much as our most popular post.

But these posts might give you a bit of inspiration, make you shed a few tears, or give you a warm and fuzzy feeling.

1) What Baseball Can Teach You About A Background Check (2011)

I love this post because it mixes a few things that I am extraordinarily passionate about: baseball and background checks. Even though this is one of the oldest posts on the site, it still rings true today.

2) What Children Can Teach A Private Investigator (2011)

While baseball and background checks might be a passion, my children are my lifeblood. Parenthood has taught me so much, and this is an incredible reminder of some valuable lessons.

3) What Chefs And Private Investigators Have In Common (2012)

I see a theme developing here. Food has been a huge influence in my life as well.

Now I am getting hungry…

4) The Secret To A Successful Private Investigation Business (2012)

Spoiler alert: I don’t really have a secret. I’ve enjoyed an extraordinarily successful business because I’ve gotten to see every one of my kids’ sporting/school events, been an intimate part of my family’s lives, and had an extraordinarily flexible work schedule that allowed me to live halfway around the world—not because I am independently wealthy, internationally famous or have developed a worldwide brand.

5) A Rant – Do Former Law Enforcement Officers Make Better Private Investigators? (2012)

This topic has always struck a chord with me. My two cents: There is no correlation between law enforcement experience and success as a private investigator, despite firms using their prior law enforcement background as their main advertising sound bite.

I remember thinking at the time that I would get quite a bit of negative feedback, but it was quite the opposite.

6)  What Is The Perception Of A Private Investigator? It Kind Of Sucks! (2013)

Another topic that has struck a chord with me: how private investigators are perceived. I had always thought that years of television and movies have warped any true sense of what a private investigator really does, so I did a survey back in 2013, which confirmed my worst fears.

7) What NY Giants Training Camp Taught Me About Running A Business (2013)

Life experiences mold you into the person you are. Long before I became a private investigator, I was an intern for the New York Giants, which taught me some valuable lessons.

8) Hello, My Name Is Brian, And I Am A Recovering Private Investigator (2013)

Every time I tell someone what I do, they are often disappointed by the fact that I don’t drive a fancy car, get myself into precarious/illegal positions or tail cheating spouses.

9) The Future Private Investigator: 6 Ways The Business Will Change (2015)

Trying to predict the future is pretty ridiculous, in my personal opinion; but that didn’t stop me from writing this post in 2015.

It may take some time for things to pan out, but it doesn’t look like I am going to be taking over the title from Nostradamus anytime soon. 

10) 17 Lessons I Learned From 15 Years As A Private Investigator (2016)

Another milestone post. Some good business and life lessons in here like sticking to your principles, persistence and patience.

11) Finding Tucker’s Father (2017)

In the past decade, we have investigated more than 1,000 cases, but none of them have been more impactful than this one. Just an amazing story with a storybook ending.

12) Reflecting On The 10 Years Since I Started My Business (2019)

It’s always good to remind yourself every once in a while where it all started, just in case you forget where you came from. 

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Blogging and social media have been a very important part of expanding our footprint and growing our business. We have been blessed with a strong online following, especially in the PI community. Sharing our experiences and knowledge with our investigative community has become one of our company’s trademarks.

With the end of the decade rapidly approaching, we thought it would be fun to take a look back at the 10 most popular blog posts of the decade.

We’ll begin at #10 and work our way down.

10) Is It Legal to Record a Phone Call or Conversation? (2011)

Many of the questions we get asked are based on things people have seen in movies or read in books, and #10 on this list is no different. Everyone wants to know whether it’s legal/admissible to record a phone call without the other person’s knowledge. As is the case with most “legality” questions, the answer is rarely as simple as people think.

9) 5 Myths: What a Private Investigator Cannot (Legally) Get (2010)

This blog post was written to dispel a few frequent misconceptions about what private investigators can or cannot legally access. I say “legally” because we are often asked to obtain certain information “by any means necessary.”

In short, no, we will not break—or even bend—our morals and ethics for any case.

We are not law enforcement personnel, nor will we EVER pretend to be.

8) How Much Does It Cost to Find a Person? (2012)

Many of our potential clients ask us to locate an individual. These requests range from finding an estranged relative, sibling or parent all the way to “I saw a pretty girl on a flight from Kansas to Vermont two years ago but was too afraid to talk to her. Can you find her for me?”

While we most likely can find either subject, the cost will greatly differ based on the level of difficulty involved in locating the person. We can’t guarantee that we will find everyone, but we are realistic about our possibilities, give you an honest assessment, and have a really high success rate.

7) Private Investigator Tips: How to Find Information About Someone (2011)

The truth of the matter is, most of the information we gather when conducting an investigation is also available to the public—they just don’t know it. While some of the databases require you to be a licensed investigator, for the majority of them, it’s just a matter of knowing where to look.

And private investigators have something that others don’t: expertise. We do this every day. Just like most of us can do some light legal work, accounting work, or even an odd job around the house, you probably need a professional to represent you in a serious lawsuit, file complex taxes, or put an addition on your house.

We hate to admit it, but we’re not magicians, miracle workers, or superheroes.

(OK, sometimes we’re miracle workers.)

6) 101 Things a Private Investigator Can Do (2011)

No matter what the nature of a case is, we are here only to find and report the facts. We will never make assumptions, and will only offer an opinion if it is asked for. We will search, hunt, scour, rummage, research, question, inspect (hold on … let me check my thesaurus … OK), forage, poke around, and triple-verify in order to provide verifiable facts. What you do with those facts is up to you.

5) Pinging Cell Phone Location and Understanding Cell Tower Information (2012)

We were lucky enough to pick the brain of seasoned investigator and Diligentia Group friend Scott Ross about the world of cell phone pinging. It’s good to have friends.

4) How to Find Assets: 13 Public Record Sources to Find Assets (2011)

Here is another blog post that relates to what investigators can or cannot legally get and where we can get our information from. Our asset searches are very effective in arming our clients with information that may help them win a court case or recoup monies owed to them.

3) Can a Private Investigator Get Bank Records or Account Information? (2011)

Without a court order, there is nearly no legal way to get bank or account information from a bank without the account holder’s consent. Period. I know that there are dozens of firms or  investigators who claim that they can do this, but in short, we won’t touch it with a 10-foot pole. Philip Segal of Griffin Intelligence handled this eloquently in a recent post that is worth the read.  So, if a firm tells you that it can obtain that information for you, proceed with immense caution.

2) 101 Investigative Links for Digging Up Information on People (2014…Updated in 2019)

So, this blog post has roughly double the traffic of any of the previous eight, and we think we know why: people love digging up information (or if we’re being real, mostly dirt) on people. They’ll dig into friends and foes alike, and in the age of the internet, there is plenty to find on just about anybody. People are also primarily very (how do I say this politely?) economical when it comes to spending their own money, so they want to see how much information they can find on their own before hiring a professional.

Well, here is the most comprehensive list you will find to assist you in your internet stalking.

Happy hunting!

1) How to Verify Military Service (2012)

We’re finally here, our number one most popular blog post of the decade. This was no contest—it was a landslide victory, doubling the traffic of even #2 on this list (which, itself, had doubled the traffic of the other eight entries).

We all know that a military imposter is one of the lowest forms of humans you can be. To capitalize on someone’s respect and admiration for active servicemen and veterans is as grimy as it gets. We get many requests to verify current or past military service, and we are more than happy to help. The truth is, once again, that this information is readily available to the public. But, if you need some guidance or advice, we are 100% here to help.

So, there you have it—our 10 most popular blog posts of the past decade. We’ve posted nearly 300 posts this decade, but these 10 rose to the top.

For those who have stuck with us over the past 10 years, keep your eyes open in the coming decade, because we plan to continue blogging in the future.

Thanks for reading!

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