Good liars

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A neglected area in deception research is what constitutes a good liar. On the basis of deception theory, people's views about how liars respond, impression formation theory, and persuasion theory, we describe eighteen attributes which in our view are present in a good liar. Insight into these characteristics will help law enforcement personnel in two ways: It provides insight into who would be suitable for undercover operations, and it may help lie detectors, because one reason why people make errors in lie detection is that they do not take the full complexity of deception into account and seem to have limited knowledge about what is actually going on in a liar's mind.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-98
Number of pages22
JournalThe Journal of Psychiatry & Law
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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