SA's national litigation, corporate & government private intelligence, private/forensic investigation/auditing, loss & risk management specialists.
Accredited Company




+27 (0) 86 1000 979
+27 (0) 86 5168 722
+27 (0) 83 7841 523
Postal Address
PO Box 17, Pavilion,
3611, South Africa
Physical Address
7 Cedar Road, Westville,
 3629, South Africa
PSIRA Reg. No.
Email Address

FSG has corporate offices in:
- and field agents in every Magisterial District in SA.


If I want your opinion, I'll give it to you.

If practice makes perfect, and nobody's perfect, why practice?

She walked into my office like a centipede with 98 missing legs.

It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye, then it becomes a scavenger hunt.

Right now I'm having amnesia and deja vu at the same time - I think I've forgotten this before.

Tact is for people who aren't clever enough to take the piss.

If you choke a Smurf, what colour does it turn?

A recent police study found that you're much more likely to get shot by a fat cop if you run.

You know the oxygen masks on airplanes? I don't think there's really any oxygen. I think they're just to muffle the screams.

To err is human, but it feels divine.





It is often accurately stated that an investigator is only as good as his/her sources of information. The simple reality is that the capacity to get a 'peek' at a confidential record/database clues the investigator where the evidence that is required to satisfy an instruction is to be found. It must also be considered that the fee of investigators in private practice is a factor of time spend, which places on the investigator the responsibility to - and creates in the client the expectation that the investigator will - satisfy an instruction in the shortest possible time.

It is also the case that access to informants who can provide investigators with access to confidential records/databases sometimes gives an investigator access to resources which if not employed as immediately as possible after a loss incident/a criminal act can put a life at risk, prevent the recovery of a significant loss, or prevent the immediate identification and detention of those responsible for a loss incident/a criminal act. It is also the case that the services of private investigators (whether they are forensic investigators) are not inexpensive and are a factor of time spent, which places on the investigator the responsibility to - and raises in a client the expectation that the investigator will - achieve a successful result in the shortest possible time.  Examples include the likes of a person that is kidnapped, or abducted in the course of a crime, or something valuable is stolen, and in the process, a cellphone and/or a bank card is stolen. As a consequence, the investigator who has informants with access to the appropriate records/databases/ resources that are theoretically unavailable if not accessed by means of a subpoena, can:

bullet  Communicate with an informant in the cellular telephone industry to:
bullet Obtain records of calls made from or received by a cellphone taken/stolen in the loss/crime incident to immediately identify who the criminals are communicating with, which information may well lead to the identification and detention (and the safe recovery of the kidnapped/abducted person/victim/hostage and/or the stolen property even if the culprits immediately change the SIM card in such as cellphone.
bullet Triangulate the location of the cellphone in real-time to monitor the movements and establish the whereabouts of the culprits, the kidnapped/abducted person/victim. hostage and/or the stolen property. This service also has an application for tracing savvy, evasive debtors when performing the likes of our 2PT service, and for the likes of locating a witness who is required for a legal proceeding but who cannot be located at any of the last known addresses of the witness.
bullet Communicate with an informant in the banking industry to immediately establish when and where a bank card is used, which can be used to locate the kidnapped/abducted person/victim/hostage and/or the stolen property in the immediate aftermath of the loss/criminal incident.

The point is:

bullet If the investigator waited for a subpoena to be obtained to access the likes of cellphone and banking recordsM immediate action leading to the safe recovery of the persons or property in question would not be possible.
bullet The chances of successfully recovering the persons or property in question would diminish with each minute spent waiting for a subpoena to be obtained and served.
bullet That the actions of the investigator (ie, using confidential informants to immediately obtain cellphone and/or banking records) transgresses all nature of common and statutory law.

All of this raise an ethical question that all investigators must confront, ie. is their a hierarchy of rights (regardless of whether it is recognised by any judicial authority) that allows an investigator to justify breaking the law in favour of the rights of the victim of a loss/crime over the rights of those who break the law?

The answer is that there is not, in as much as the lower courts are 'bodies of statute', will not permit evidence that is obtained illegally to be admitted, and will sanction the investigator for breaking such laws.

But the answer is also that there is, in as much as an appeal the higher courts, who have the mandate to apply their minds to interpret the law, to assess the law not only in its literal interpretation but also in terms of the 'spirit' of the law, will decline to prosecute an investigator who breaks the law in this way and may rule evidence gathered as a result as admissible.

But what of the ethics of using confidential informants to access confidential records/databases in the absence of imminent risk solely for the purpose of saving time and to learn where the evidence required to satisfy an instruction can be found?

FSG takes a pragmatic approach. If we can access confidential records/databases, we will, subject to the following:

bullet We are satisfied that the confidential records we obtain will not be used for illegal or malicious purposes.
bullet Accessing confidential records genuinely has the potential to reveal where the evidence required to satisfy an instruction can be found.
bullet We are in a position to manage the risk of being exposed to such actions.
bullet Information/records obtained in this manner remain strictly confidential between FSG and client such that no other party will have sight of such information/records or have knowledge that client and FSG have possession of such information/records. (Furthermore, FSG never reveals to our confidential informants for who and for what purpose confidential information/records are required, often uses an intermediary such that confidential informants do not even know the such records/information are being obtained for FSG, and we store such information/records in a manner that any examination of our records will not associate such records with a particular client.)

In the context of the above, we inform that we are able to access all nature of confidential records through confidential informants, including (but nor limited to):

bullet Detailed landline and cellphone billing.
bullet Other confidential records/databases of telecommunication service providers (Telkom and all the cellphone service providers) such as:
bullet The full particulars of a subscriber to a particular service.
bullet All facilities to which a subscriber has subscribed.
bullet Information that can be obtained as the result of access to such records/confidential databases:
bullet The triangulation of the location of cellphones in real-time.
bullet IMEI profiles to identify all SIM cards used in a particular cellphone handset.
bullet SIM card profiles to identify all handsets in which a SIM card has been used (and then an IMEI profile of all resultant handsets identifed to establish what other SIM cards have been used in them).
bullet Banking records for the four major banks (and sometimes for some of the others):
bullet Ownership of a banking facility.
bullet The identification of
bullet SAPS databases; specifically CAS, CRIM, NATIS, the FIREARMS REGISTER and SAPS Crime Intelligence Profiles.
bullet Dept of Home Affairs records/databases:
bullet The population register (births, deaths, marriages, identity numbers, the spouse and children (and their identity numbers and population register details) of a person who owns a particular identity number.
bullet Passport records.
bullet The Border Movement Register.
bullet Dept of Transport databases:
bullet eNATIS.
bullet Taxi licenses.
bullet PDP's.
bullet A record of traffic offence fines and outstanding fines.
bullet Drivers' license validation.
bullet The South African Social Security Association (SASSA):
bullet Whether a person is receiving any social grants (pension, disability, child, etc.)
bullet All grants an individual is receiving and the value of same.
bullet Personal information for all state grant beneficiaries.
bullet The manner in which payment is made, and if by EFT the details of the beneficiary bank account.
bullet SARS records.
bullet Dept of Defence records.

Click HERE to view our Database Intelligence service TERMS-CONDITIONS.