MacGyver Hacks for Private Investigators
Posted by Pamela S. on Wednesday, April 25th, 2012
Have you ever been in a bind on surveillance, or in your everyday life, and asked, “What would MacGyver do?”
Even if you are too young to remember the TV show that ran from 1985 to 1992, you probably know who I am talking about. MacGyver was a secret agent who never carried a gun. He solved problems using his mind, duct tape, a Swiss Army knife and other objects. I trust that you will never have to disarm a missile with a paper clip, but we can all look to MacGyver for inspiration.
What MacGyver had, which we could all use a bit of, was his ability to think on his feet. You can have a surveillance vehicle filled with fancy equipment but sometimes it doesn't solve every problem.
MacGyver has become part of the lexicon. From urbandictionary.com:
MacGyver: “v. 1. To use ingenuity to fix or remedy a problem using only the tools available at hand. 2. To jury-rig. n. Someone who can regularly cobble together solutions to problems using only the tools available at hand.”
How can you learn to think like MacGyver? It isn't just a matter of learning how to make things from common household items. You need to think not outside the box, but in every corner of the box. Whether you are a private investigator, in law enforcement, a lawyer, or a stay at home parent, keeping your mind open to all possibilities will give you the ability to “MacGyver”.
If you didn't understand the title of my post, “MacGyver Hacks for Private Investigators” don’t feel bad. I didn't know what a hack was either. Maybe it's my age. I thought a hack was something criminals do to computers. Thanks to urbandictionary.com I know that it means “a clever solution to a tricky problem”. Reading urbandictionary.com won’t get you out of a jam but it will teach you the language of today’s youth. This can help you if you are investigating a subculture or dealing with young people and don’t have a clue what they are talking about.
Lifehacker led me to an article on Psychology Today: “9 Easy Ways to Cr
eate Ideas” by Michael Michalko. Using the paperclip as an example, Michalko explains how to be use innovate thinking. This is a very valuable technique for an investigator to learn.
There are many sites online that have taken inspiration from MacGyver to come up with ideas for everything from survival planning to fixing household items.
Field and Stream shows you how to “Make a Survival Kit out of an Altoids Tin”
NBCBayarea.com posted “A MacGyver’s Guide To Quake Survival:5 things you didn't know you needed in your earthquake survival kit.”
Who knew that a deck of cards could be a survival tool. Read the article to learn how.
How Stuff Works has a post “Top 10 Everyday Items You Can Repurpose in a Survival Scenario”.
CNNGo has an article titled “Survival Gadgets that would Impress MacGyver.”
MacGyver would have loved the Flint and Steel Survival Bracelet. Paracord bracelets are one of those things you can wear for fashion and use for emergencies.
You may never find yourself lost in the Everglades, but if you have watched episodes of “Survivorman” you will be able to find food to eat and make shelter until you are found.
Be prepared. Don’t go anywhere without your paperclip, Swiss Army knife, duct tape, fishing line, crazy glue. Yes, in a pinch you can use crazy glue to seal a shallow wound. Not doctor recommended, but I've done it. I've also cut myself so badly I needed stitches and couldn't get to a hospital, so I duct taped the wound closed. It worked.
There are 101 uses for duct tape, or more.
Too bad MacGyver didn’t have access to the latest 3M™ Performance Plus Duct Tape Nuclear Grade. This duct tape is so strong that the technical data sheet claims it is
“Ideal for demanding duct tape applications in the nuclear power plant, ship building and stainless steel fabrication industries.”
MacGyver blew a lot of things up with homemade explosives. This is one area where you should never attempt to emulate his work. This may all seem like a bit of silliness, but letting your mind go and coming up with wild ideas helps your brain to stay active. You never know, it could help you solve a crime or save your life one day.
Former FBI Assistant Director Tom Sheer has recruited the best from the FBI, DEA, IRS and Secret Service to build a formidable team at Sheer Investigations. Our private investigators have the sensitivity and experience to handle the most delicate investigations.