Surveillance is the art of watching over the activities of persons or groups from a position of higher authority. Surveillance may be covert (without their knowledge) or overt (perhaps with frequent reminders such as "we are watching over you"). Modern electronic and computer technology have given surveillance a whole new field of operation. Surveillance can be automated using computers where more people are leaving extensive records that describe their activities.

However, surveillance also includes simple, relatively no- or low-technology methods such as direct observation, observation with binoculars, photo camera, video, or similar methods.


Photography is becoming more valuable as a means of surveillance. In recent years there has been a significant expansion in the level of stills and video photography carried out at public demonstrations in many countries. At the same time there have been advances in closed circuit television (CCTV) technology and computer image processing that enable digital images taken from cameras to be matched with images stored in a database.

Photographs have long been collected as a form of evidence. But as protest and civil disobedience become an ever-greater liability to governments and corporations, images are gathered not only as evidence for prosecution, but also as a source of intelligence information. The collection of photographs and video also has another important function — it scares people.

Secret photography involves a person or persons being unaware that they are being intentionally photographed. It is sometimes called "covert photography", but this is a term used mostly among professional investigators. Sometimes normal cameras are used, but the photographer is concealed. Sometimes the camera itself is disguised or concealed. Some obvious element of concealment (or great distance) is generally needed to make such photography fall under the category of 'secret photography' rather than street photography or documentary photography.

Computer surveillance

At a basic level, computers are a surveillance target because large amounts of personal information are stored on them. Anyone who can access or remove a computer can retrieve information. If someone is able to install software on a computer system, they can turn the computer into a surveillance device.

Computers can be tapped by a number of methods, ranging from the installation of physical bugs or surveillance software to the remote interception of the radio transmissions generated by the normal operation of computers.

Spyware, a term coined by computer security expert Steve Gibson, is often used to describe computer surveillance tools that are installed against a user's will. High-speed Internet connections have made computers more vulnerable than ever before.

Computer surveillance is the act of surveilling people's computer activity without their knowledge, by accessing the computer itself.

Computers make excellent surveillance tools because they can do things without their owners' knowledge or consent. Most computers have connections to networks, which can be exploited (through security cracking) to gain access to any confidential data that may be stored on the computer. Additionally, if someone is able to install certain types of software on a system, they can turn it into a surveillance device.

Professional Surveillance

What kind of surveillance job do you need done? Have you tried tracking your cheating spouse only to discover how difficult it is to stay hidden driving the family SUV? What is happening to the profits you expected to make compared to what your accountant is showing you? How can you be sure you’re not getting taken in by a scam artist if you invest in his new business opportunity?

Contact Emerald City Investigators today and we can be on the job by tomorrow. After our detailed consultation, we will determine the best approach for your surveillance job and help you find out the truth behind the lies. Don’t do it yourself – let a professional private investigator at Emerald City Investigators deliver the evidence you need.

Emerald City Investigations Surveillance Advantages:

If we need to provide surveillance for your investigation, we ask that you provide the following items of the subject(s) in question (preferably in writing):

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