A private investigator investigates, performs surveillance, obtains information, analyses and interprets it and carries out other types of complex investigative activities, which concern the activity of the company that used its services. Their purpose is to identify, document and dissolve, regardless of the level of difficulty, the criminal networks that cause material or reputational harm to the recipient of their services. Regardless of the type of investigation carried out, a private investigator’s role is to gather information, evidence, and hand it over to the client who hired them.

The types of private investigations carried out for a company include economic-financial investigations, merger & acquisitions investigations in case of acquisitions and mergers, background check investigations, corporate investigations, dispute investigations, investigations aimed at identifying individuals and their activities, investigations aimed at the activity of the beneficiary company, investigations to locate persons, their relationship circles, investigations to establish degrees of kinship in cases of inheritance or beneficiaries of compensation, due-diligence and risk management investigations, anti-fraud investigations in insurance, agriculture, merger & acquisitions or real estate, investigations to identify and prove smuggling and counterfeiting actions or to fight and prevent money laundering, investigations to identify and prove corruption.

The difference between a private detective and a private investigator is one of perception. Private detectives get involved in domestic investigations, such as cases of cheating, evidence for divorce or custody, missing persons and so on. Private investigators serve legal entities, companies, in other, more complex types of investigations: legal investigations for lawyers or law firms, corporate investigations for companies in various industries, from insurance and energy, to agriculture or real estate or cyber investigations,  targeting online fraud activities and attempts of fraud.

It depends. The cost of a private investigation varies depending on the length of the investigation, the complexity of the case and the number of investigators involved. Some private investigative agencies have hourly rates per investigator, while others charge per team or per case.

The duration of an investigation can vary from a month to a year or even longer, depending on the complexity of the case. For example, all investigations conducted by SPIA follow a well-defined plan consisting of: understanding the case, proposing the action plan, conducting the actual investigation and data collection, then final reporting, data interpretation and assistance.

No, private investigators are not police officers and do not represent State authorities, although some of them previously worked in the police, army or other State structures.

Yes. Each private investigator carries out their activity under a certificate obtained following an exam taken with IGPR/IPJ.

No, private investigators cannot tap a phone. This method is used only by the competent authorities, exclusively under a warrant.

No, private investigators cannot read SMS or messages from other applications. This method is used only by the competent authorities, exclusively under a warrant.

Private investigation agencies use specific and complex research methods and investigation techniques, which fully comply with the legal framework. They vary depending on the logistical equipment of each agency, the knowledge and specializations obtained by the private investigators involved and the previous experience.

Yes. A private investigator’s mission is to obtain evidence exclusively in the legal and regulated manner, so that the client who hired them can use such evidence in court or in any other legal framework as needed. Evidence that violates the law by the way it was obtained is useless, and the procedure by which it was obtained is often punished by the competent authorities.

No. The only weapons on which a good private investigator relies are curiosity, discretion, and professionalism.

Occasionally, yes. The client who has hired the private investigation agency may decide to hand over the obtained evidence by the investigators to the criminal investigation bodies or they may work together throughout the investigation, depending on the requests from the State bodies.

Yes, hiring a private investigator is perfectly legal. The Romanian law regulated the profession of private investigator in Romania in 2003, with the adoption of Law no. 329.

The list of certified and authorized investigators, as well as of authorized offices and companies, is public and is constantly updated on the IGPR website.

What no other person is allowed to do, if that means breaking the law, such as phone tapping, trespassing private property, restricting fundamental freedoms or threatening a person to disclose the desired information.

If an investigator is exposed, they abandon the investigation and the action plan is changed. The exposed investigator is permanently removed from the case.

Hiring a private investigator is recommended when your company’s interests need protection, whether this is proactive or reactive.


Specifically, you can use economic and financial investigations before acquiring a company, back-ground check investigations to make sure of the ethical and professional integrity of your future business partners, customers or employees or even due diligence investigations, to find out if your business has vulnerabilities, which you can improve through specialized risk management services.

If there is suspicion or even evidence of an attempted fraud, you can employ anti-fraud investigation services, which are available for various industries, from energy, agriculture and real estate to insurance.

You can also hire a private investigator to investigate and prove suspicions of smuggling and counterfeiting or to fight and prevent money laundering and for corruption.

A private investigator can only access public data, reported in the balance sheet.

If you want to become a private investigator, you must first meet several conditions simultaneously: to have Romanian citizenship or to be a citizen of one of the Member States of the European Union or of the European Economic Area, to have secondary education and to be a graduate of a post-secondary school of detectives or to have worked as a police officer or worker in public institutions with responsibilities in the field of defense, public order or national security or to be a graduate of a higher education institution.

To be medically fit, to not have been convicted for intentional crimes, to not carry out an activity involving the exercise of public authority, to have the approval of the County Police Inspectorate or of the Bucharest Police Department, as the case may be.

Last but not least, to have passed the private detective exam, according to the provisions of Art. 7 of Law no. 329/2003 or to hold a certificate of qualification for this profession or a similar certificate issued by one of the Member States of the European Union and of the European Economic Area.

If you simultaneously meet all conditions above, the steps you need to take to become a private investigator are described in the following article: https://www.think-business.ro/cum-sa-devii-detectiv-particular/

Hiring a private investigator is no different than hiring any other type of service for companies, except for the discretion surrounding this whole process. But, in short, we can say that the steps you need to take are the following: contact us by email contact@spiaromania.com or through the contact form. Briefly describe the problem you are dealing with and, if we can help you, we will schedule a meeting, in which you tell us more about your situation, why you think you need a team of private investigators and what results are you waiting for. We will make further verifications to understand your field, company and case very well, and then get back to you with proposals. Everything happens in the strictest confidence!

Depending on what you tell us, the market you are in and the prior documentation we do, we will provide you with at least one viable proposal for approach and resolution. We will explain to you step by step what will happen so that you also understand very well what the work of SPIA’s private investigators entails. Together, we will form a team and we believe it is vital for you to be aware of all aspects.

This is the part that we can’t tell you much about. But, in short, SPIA’s team of investigators implements the plan we were telling you about earlier.

All the data we collect through the specific investigation activities go into a concise and eloquent report, whose data are interpreted and receive the related suggestions. If you need, we can offer you specialized legal advice and even crisis communication.

Corporate investigations represent a generic term, which designates the professional business intelligence services that an agency of private investigators performs for clients in the corporate area, such as companies. These services are complex and can cover a wide range of actions, for a variety of cases.

A possible application of business investigation services is corporate fraud. In these cases, companies turn to business intelligence specialists to plan and provide specialized investigations, meant to expose and dismantle the illicit elements and facts within a company.

Other scenarios for which the intervention of specialists in corporate investigations is necessary would be cases of corruption within the company, bribery, clientelism, abuse of office, theft or embezzlement.

You can find more information about the business investigation activity, respectively business intelligence on our page dedicated to the services of corporate investigations.

Whistleblowing is the act of reporting law violations through the internal channels established by the organization, by identifying employees that violate the rules. They may impose administrative, disciplinary, or criminal sanctions on the perpetrator.

A whistleblower is a person who provides information about illegal, improper, or unethical actions or practices committed by the employer or other employees in public or private sector organizations.

The “whistleblower” label is not officially assigned, but automatically belongs to anyone who makes the disclosures; they can be hired, collaborating or external to the organization about which the disclosures are made.

To be considered a whistleblowing reporting, the disclosure must be done through the reporting channels, the so-called whistleblowing systems, in the law established order, to not target interpersonal conflicts between the whistleblower and another employee and not to be made for the purpose obtaining benefits by the rapporteur or by other persons.

Any employee, collaborator or outsider of the organization who becomes aware, in various ways, of the existence of law violations or of the preparation of legal norms violation by an employee of the unit where he carries out his activity and reports the deviation through one of the internal channels established within that organization, can become a whistleblower.

The legal protection or remedial measures that the whistleblower receives in the event of a report are a motivation for him to report certain breaches within the organization where he is employed, if he is in good faith.

A breach is reported through one of the internal channels set up within that organization. Specifically, the reporting can be done in writing, on paper or in electronic format, by telephone, by voice messaging systems or by a face-to-face meeting, at the request of the whistleblower, with the designated person within the organization.

The 2019/1937 (EU) Directive of the European Parliament and Council from October 23rd  2019 on the protection of persons reporting infringements of Union law, published in the Official Journal of the European Union, L series, no. 305 of November 26, 2019, established that its provisions to be transposed into national legislation until 17.12.2021, so that after this date it will take effect. Thus, in 2021, the Ministry of Justice put into public debate the draft law on “Protection of Whistleblowers”, but, although the European Commission has set a transitional period of two years for implementation, it has not yet been adopted by the Parliament.

At the time of writing this article, the bill is being debated in Parliament’s specialized committees. The Committee on Legal Affairs approved the draft, proposing some changes to the terms.

Whistleblowing may report illegal, incorrect, or unethical actions or practices committed by the employer or other employees.

Whistleblowing is a legal action of the employee regarding the reporting law violations (regulations, procedures, provisions, regulations, etc.), but it must be formulated in good faith, without prejudice to legal rules.

In the event of law violations by persons holding management positions within the organization, employees may report violations through the internal channels. Both in the European Directive and in the draft law on measures to protect whistleblowers, no exceptions are provided for persons who may be the subject of the reporting, the provisions being applicable to any employee, regardless of the position held within the organization. Hence, there is some requirement that the designated person in the unit must be capable of maintaining the confidentiality of the whistleblower’s identity, the reported deviation, and the entire reporting process.

In this context, it is necessary to nominate a limited number of people from the organization’s top management who have access to internal reporting data and adopt any measures or activities to investigate those reported.

According to the 2019/1937 European Directive on the protection of whistleblowers, as well as the draft law to be adopted by Parliament in this regard, any form of retaliation against whistleblowers, such as the followings but not limited to them, is prohibited,

  1. suspension of the individual employment contract or the employment relationship.
  2. dismissal.
  3. modification of the employment contract or of the employment relationship.
  4. demotion or impediment to job promotion and professional development.
  5. application of a disciplinary sanction.
  6. coercion, intimidation, harassment, or ostracism.
  7. discrimination, creating another disadvantage or being subjected to unfair treatment.
  8. refusal to convert a fixed-term employment contract into an indefinite-term employment contract, if the worker had legitimate expectations that he would be offered a permanent job.
  9. the refusal to renew an employment contract for a certain period or the early termination of such a contract.
  10. causing damage, including that of the reputation of the person concerned, on social media platforms, or financial loss, including in the form of loss of business opportunities and loss of income.
  11. inclusion in a black list or negative database, based on a formal or informal sectoral or industry-level agreement, which may imply that the person concerned will not find a job in that future sector or industry.
  12. early termination or cancellation of a contract for goods or services.
  13. cancellation of a license or permit.
  14. requesting a psychiatric or medical evaluation.

As provided by the rules to be adopted by national law, the whistleblower’s reporting must include at least the following data: name and surname, contact details, professional context in which the information was obtained, description of the act likely to constitute a law breach, evidence in support of the report, and the signature, if the case may be.

The whistleblower’s data are known only by the designated person within the organization or by the designated person outside the organization, called the designated third party and by the organization’s manager if the reporting does not target him. Furthermore, in the case of whistleblower reporting some aspects that meet the constituent elements of a crime, the whistleblower may benefit from the protection measures provided by the criminal law.

The anonymous warning given by an employee has not been discussed in the European Directorate, nor in the drafting of the law on the protection of public interest warnings but contains the provision stating that the report must contain the identification data of the whistleblower, as well as other data to help identify the competence to resolve the complaint.

The European Directive on the protection of whistleblowers does not prohibit companies with less than 50 employees from implementing internal channels for the protection of employees who report misconduct at work. Moreover, small, and medium-sized companies can group on the specific field of activity and implement a common system for reporting deviations.

The Whistleblowing Directive approved by the European Union establishes 3 types of reporting: internal reporting (within the company), external reporting and public disclosure of information.

According to the draft law, the following will be subject to the law and implicitly will be obliged to comply with the obligations imposed by it:

(i) Public authorities and institutions.

(ii) Private legal persons with at least 50 employees.

(iii) Autonomous administrations of national or local interest, national companies, and societies.

(iv) Companies in which the State or a local government authority is a shareholder, regardless of the number of employees.

The bill does not differentiate companies based on turnover. Consequently, all the obligations imposed by the bill will enter into force and will be applicable to all companies with more than 249 employees, regardless of their turnover.

In relation to legal persons or public authorities with between 50 and 249 employees, the draft law regulates the possibility of grouping them or sharing resources in terms of receiving reports and subsequent actions. In addition, the obligations imposed in the Project 1 of the law for legal entities or public authorities that have between 50 and 249 employees will enter into force only from 2023.