LiarCard analyzes and "hacks" emotions in voice calls

Dark Reading Staff, Dark Reading

March 26, 2009

2 Min Read

It's not what you say, but how you say it: That's not just your mom talking, but also the premise of a new beta voice-call service that acts as a lie detector, using voice analysis technology to determine when the person on the other end of the line isn't telling the truth.

The LiarCard service detects the emotional content in speech patterns, which provides information about the speaker's mental and emotional state during the call, according to TelTech Systems, which developed the tool, now available in beta.

The concept of psyche-hacking is nothing new. Researcher Nitesh Dhanjani has been studying how a user's online persona and activity could be used to hack his or her state of mind -- for intelligence-gathering and even as a way to influence behavior.

"Should something like this [LiarCard technology] get to a more mature state, I can see a clear correlation to the online social psyche analysis I have been pondering," Dhanjani says. "Perhaps tie contextual analysis of the...person on the other end of the call's statements on the social media applications to point out contradictions and correlate emotional states with personality analysis."

TelTech promotes the tool as a way to get an edge in a business negotiation, or to find better employees or suppliers. "LiarCard 'listens' to the millisecond changes that occur in the human voice when a sudden process starts in the brain and extract some of the attention needed to process the words," LiarCard's Website says.

LiarCard works like this: You purchase a PIN number ($10 for 30 minutes of calls to $80 for 240 minutes), then dial LiarCard's toll-free number, and input your PIN and destination phone number. LiarCard provides a "heartbeat pulse" to the subscriber. "When the called party is stressed about what is said, then you'll hear it beat quicker and then slow down again if they're being truthful," according to the LiarCard Website. "A buzz is played when the called party is suspected of not telling the truth or is in an extreme state of mind."

There's also a Web-based dashboard that provides visual graphics, such as the "truth indicator" as the called party speaks.

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