Raising standards, inspiring trust…and lobbying for change

Find an Approved Investigator - or - Find out more about ABI

Proposal to ICO for ABI GDPR Code of Conduct

- Consultation Closed -
[Please contact Secretariat@theABI.org.uk for latest draft Proposal]

         Regardless of the expertise, ability, resources, enthusiasm, experience, affiliations or memberships of your chosen investigator, GDPR does not discriminate.  

All investigators are accountable.

The Law Society of England & Wales and the Solicitors Regulation Authority commented:

“The ABI is to be commended for its initiative in developing this Code which we believe can make a useful contribution to good data protection practice for its members. It is well structured and clearly written and can contribute to a clearer understanding of data protection responsibilities for Code signatories and those who commission them.”


There’s no denying, private investigation can be a minefield. The market is unregulated, and plagued by rogue operators. And that makes life difficult for everyone concerned

That’s why The Association of British Investigators exists.  For clients, choosing someone reliable can feel like a lottery.  For seasoned investigators, proving credibility is a constant battle. And for anyone thinking of entering the industry, there are mixed messages out there – from training providers who deliver false hope, and from media that want to cast the whole industry in a bad light. 

The ABI is the key professional body for investigators and litigation support agents.

Upcoming Training Workshops

It's all about ACCOUNTABILITY and that is what the ABI is about.  We are here to protect you from the many rogue traders and scams, read more ... 

We’re a recognised and respected industry body. Since 1913, we’ve been training and vetting members by our own code of professional standards. Performing due diligence. Lobbying for regulation. And, we hope, changing public perception, by acting with integrity.

What does this mean to you?

If you need an investigator, you can feel safe hiring one of our members.
Find out more…

If you’re a professional, you have support. A voice. And a badge of credibility.
Find out more…

If you’re starting out, you have a safe route into the industry.
Find out more…

  • General Investigations
    Finding the right investigator can be a worry. Will they be reputable? Competent? Can you trust them with such an important task? Will there be delays? Will they breach confidence? This category includes numerous services. Click the link to the left to read more.
    There are many examples of private investigators dealing in people's personal information. It's therefore important in our view that we should make sure that all private investigators are registered so that there is robust regulation
    Chair of the Parliamentary Home Affairs Select Committee (July 2013)
  • Fraud Investigations
    Fraudsters often claim that no-one really gets hurt. You’ve heard the story – “everyone just pays another penny on their insurance policy”. It’s an odd way of justifying a serious, and dangerous, crime. More...
    It is vital we have proper regulation of private investigators to ensure rigorous standards in this sector and the respect of individuals’ rights to privacy"
    Theresa May
    31st May 2013
  • Process Serving & Litigation Support
    If you’re a government body, the legal profession or a private company, you need to act efficiently. You need a reliable partner for process serving and litigation matters. You need someone with specialist experience. Someone qualified and trained. And someone whose background has been rigorously – independently - checked. More...
    You only outsource services when they are satisfied that the provider has taken all appropriate steps to ensure that clients' confidential information will be protected.
    The Solicitors Regulation Authority Code
    • IB (4.3)
  • Road Traffic Accidents & Collisions
    Road traffic accidents are not always black and white. You know that drivers will argue over blame. Witness accounts can vary. And traffic cameras won’t always shed light on the situation. More...
    There are many examples of private investigators dealing in people's personal information. It's therefore important in our view that we should make sure that all private investigators are registered so that there is robust regulation
    Chair of the Parliamentary Home Affairs Select Committee (July 2013)
  • Specialist & Forensic Services
    Finding the right forensic services investigator is vital. ABI has done the vetting for you, with a Members Database of trained and reliable professionals. More...
    It is vital we have proper regulation of private investigators to ensure rigorous standards in this sector and the respect of individuals’ rights to privacy"
    Theresa May
    31st May 2013
  • Surveillance
    Need help with surveillance? Whether you’re investigating personal theft or suspected infidelity, ABI will help you find an experienced, reliable partner. More...
    There are many examples of private investigators dealing in people's personal information. It's therefore important in our view that we should make sure that all private investigators are registered so that there is robust regulation
    Chair of the Parliamentary Home Affairs Select Committee (July 2013)
  • Tracing & Status Reports
    Tracing people calls for persistence, tact and diplomacy. ABI will help you find a specialist investigator with the vital skills and qualities. This category includes services such as Asset Tracing, Background Enquires and Vetting, Beneficiaries, Debtor, Tracing, Family History, Pre-sue Enquiries, Witnesses....Click the link to the left to read more.
    You only outsource services only when they are satisfied that the provider has taken all appropriate steps to ensure that clients' confidential information will be protected.
    The Solicitors Regulation Authority Code
    • IB (4.3)
  • Undercover Investigations
    An undercover detective can get closer to the truth than a security system or CCTV camera. Staying within the law, they can uncover the evidence you need. More...
    There are many examples of private investigators dealing in people's personal information. It's therefore important in our view that we should make sure that all private investigators are registered so that there is robust regulation
    Chair of the Parliamentary Home Affairs Select Committee (July 2013)
  • Vehicle Investigations
    Investigations Involving Vehicles Professional vehicle Examination and official DVLA data access. In this day of ultra fast communications and travel, vehicles of some kind will invariably play a part in crime or other incidents. There are many legal…
    It is vital we have proper regulation of private investigators to ensure rigorous standards in this sector and the respect of individuals’ rights to privacy"
    Theresa May
    31st July 2013
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicle ("UAV" - drone assisted surveillance)
    Unmanned aerial vehicle (an aircraft piloted by remote control or onboard computers). The ABI service providers require as a minimum the following: 1. Permission for Commercial Operations (PfCO) from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) – this shoul…
  • Matrimonial
  • Brand Protection / Intellectual Property
    INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS (IPR) investigations and anti-counterfeiting fall within this category. Many major brands throughout the world have counterfeit problems with the merchandise / products they manufacture, which is very much a growing busi…
  • Criminal Defence
  • Open Source Intelligence
  • Electronic Counter Measures (debugging)
    ELECTRONIC COUNTER MEASURES (ECM) (debugging).  Just about anybody can be the target of so called bugging or covert eavesdropping, some people are at greater risk than others for a number of reasons mainly because of their work, legal reasons [civil…
  • Genealogy
  • Due Diligence
  • Pre Sue / Status Enquires
  • Interviewing
  • Cyber Crime / Computer Misuse
  • Asset Tracing
  • Counter Surveillance
  • Legal Aid Work

The ABI has campaigned tirelessly for licensing in our profession but in the absence of statutory regulation the ABI alone offers the public the protection from poor practice by the promotion of excellence, integrity and professionalism within its membership.

The ABI has become the kite mark of the investigation industry. Insist your investigator is an ABI member.

The types of work that professional investigators undertake have been divided into 9 specialist categories, please click on each category to the left to find our more.

Not sure which category of investigative specialist you need? This chart might help 

In a world without consequences, the bad man will be king
The Guardian
2020

Working with the Law Society

The ABI is the only association in this industry to be recognised by the Law Society of England and Wales, and included in the Law Society of Scotland's approved Supplier Scheme.

The highest independent professional bodies for solicitors put their trust in us. We’re confident you can do the same.

Law Society logo
Scotland Law Society logo
Professional Indemnity Insurance

Contact the ABI (See Privacy Notice on Contact Page)

Thank you, your message has been sent.
A member of our team will be in touch shortly.
Loading...
Working...