Criminal Profilers Using Phones to Collect DNA

A criminal profiler uses many facets of a situation to develop theories about the behavior, thought patterns, and motives of a criminal. New technology can now aid in that important process. Recent research finds that molecular traces on a cell phone can reveal much about a person's lifestyle and habits. This information is critical to criminal profilers, who can use it as a tool to help make inferences about a suspect.

Through Regis University's Bachelor of Science in Criminology program, you'll learn how to utilize the latest technology, like tracking DNA found on cellphones, to formulate profiles about the people you're investigating.

Cell Phones Reveal More Than You Think

In November 2016, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences made an important discovery: a person leaves behind much more than a fingerprint on a cell phone. While the trace molecules can't pinpoint the phone's exact owner, they offer plenty of clues as to the person's behavior.

New Information Helps Criminal Profilers

Criminal investigators have long used digital evidence from cell phones, such as pictures, contact information, ingoing and outgoing calls, and more to help in investigations, but today they have access to information that's even more telling. The lifestyle information available through this new technology allows criminal profilers to identify a person's gender, how healthy they are, the types of food they eat, and more. A criminal profiler uses this invaluable information to develop a criminal profile as they determine the lifestyle habits of the phone's owner.

Criminal Profilers at Work

A criminal profiler is often able to infer the motivations behind a crime, determine the personality of a criminal, and give a psychological assessment that helps law enforcement evaluate and pinpoint suspects. When a cell phone is left behind at a crime scene or submitted as evidence, the molecular information can now be used in conjunction with a host of other factors to help ascertain the behaviors, personality, and patterns of a suspect.

While the lifestyle information gleaned from a cell phone is important, it is just one component in the criminal profiling process. Creating a thorough portrait of a suspect requires a solid foundation, like the Bachelor of Science in Criminology program at Regis University. This education provides criminal profilers with all the steps necessary to create a comprehensive forensic picture. To learn more about the program, call 877-820-0581 or click here.