• Sweden edition
 
Lady detective sets honey traps to sniff out Swedish infidelity

Lady detective sets honey traps to sniff out Swedish infidelity

Published: 19 Oct 2012 16:42 GMT+02:00
Updated: 19 Oct 2012 16:42 GMT+02:00

Sweden’s first Lady Detective Agency opened up its doors in Stockholm in late August, with the goal of being an affordable and sensitive alternative to traditional detective agencies.

“First and foremost, we are here to help people who find themselves in situations they can’t solve themselves. Most have carried this burden for some time and see no other solution than to hire us," Jane Andersson, head of the Swedish branch of the Lady Detective Agency, tells The Local.

The agency first saw the light of day in the UK four years ago. Founder Rebecca Jane identified a niche in the market for a “caring” detective service after having to pour her heart out to expensive, yet insensitive, private eyes when she suspected her now ex-husband of having an affair.

Having started up a very successful operation – probably at least slightly due to the name of the agency – Rebecca Jane’s business received a lot of media attention.

After seeing Rebecca Jane on Swedish chat show Skavlan, where she announced her intentions to take the operation overseas, Jane Andersson, a merchandiser for a Swedish hardware chain, was intrigued.

“I made contact with the agency and after speaking to Rebecca Jane, I went over to the UK to see how they worked,” Andersson says.

“I just really loved the whole concept. I managed to persuade her that Sweden should get the first international agency instead of the US.”

After being personally trained by Rebecca Jane, Andersson gave up her job and set about creating the Swedish agency.

“Of course it was scary to leave work and start my own operation. But this is without a doubt my dream job and an opportunity to really help people,” she says.

In their first two months of operation, the Swedish lady detectives have already found themselves working some 20 cases.

“They range between infidelity cases, finding missing people, and helping companies investigate potential employees," says Andersson.

In Sweden, the division between female and male clients is 50-50, about the same gender divide as the British market.

In Sweden, as in the UK, infidelity cases have been given the most publicity in the papers. And the detectives don’t doubt that there is a need for these sorts of services:

“The British market shows us that in 80 percent of the infidelity cases, there really is something going on – it is often a strong and accurate instinct that these spouses have,” says Andersson.

In order to find out, the detectives carry out traditional surveillance, and will follow and document the movements of the person they are investigating.

However, the work of the lady detectives is neither as easy nor as glamorous as it is depicted on the silver screen, Andersson explains.

“If we skulked around in trench-coats and big sunglasses the public would most likely become much more suspicious. We are just normal girls and blend into the background completely,” she says.

The trick is to adapt to one's surroundings.

“We won’t dress up – but if we are following someone for a whole day, we may change little things in our appearance. I might change my outfit and hair style a few times but we’re not talking wigs and fake moustaches at all,” she says.

One of the more controversial services offered by the agency is “honey trapping”, either online or in person, where detectives try to glean whether a spouse would cheat or not.

However, Andersson is quick to explain that it is not so much a trap as a test.

“We create a very natural situation and it is very improbable that anyone can avoid ever meeting anyone who will hit on them at some time or another in their life,” Andersson says.

Internet honey trapping involves creating a profile on dating sites, based on what the client thinks their partner would most be most attracted to, and then maintaining a presence on the sites.

“Often it is they who make contact with us. We stay quite restrictive in our contact with them but we build up a connection over a number of weeks through emails, text messages, or in chat rooms,” explains Andersson.

“Often they share a lot of private information and generally it becomes obvious during these weeks of contact if they are just looking for someone to talk to or if they want another relationship.”

In person, honey trapping is more or less the same, apart from the first meeting being in person. The whole thing is then concluded by setting up an actual date at a restaurant, coffee shop, or other public place.

A detective will be at the designated place to document that the person showed up, but the date will not take place, and he or she will believe they were stood up.

“After that, we hand over all of the contact we have had with the spouse to the client. The client will know that the partner has met someone, kept in contact with them over a few weeks, and made plans to see them again,” explains Andersson.

She thinks it's much better to get professional help if one suspects a spouse of infidelity, rather than trying to find out for oneself.

“It is easy to make too much of something insignificant when it involves people you love. A person who is completely objective can say: ‘Look, these are the facts, - your husband isn’t on this site, he turned down the girl who approached him, you can be calm,” says Andersson.

Since opening in the UK, the agency has grown to 20 employees in 4 years and the Swedish operation also hopes to grow and take on new staff.

"There has been a great deal of interest in working for us; we must’ve had almost 60 applications so far – both men and women – of all ages," says Andersson.

To work for the agency, would-be detectives will have to take part in an 8-week online training course, held by Rebecca Jane from the UK, and then physical education led by both Andersson and Rebecca Jane.

“The best thing to do is to shadow a detective carrying out surveillance work, as it provides an understanding of what the work actually entails and shows potential snags and pitfalls along the way,” says Andersson.

Having experienced the murky world of infidelity, Andersson is still shocked to see the naivety with which some people share their lives online:

“I am still surprised at how graphic people can be and how indiscreet, because you can really never know who it is that you are chatting with over the internet.”

Since opening in Sweden, the Lady Detectives have received a fair amount of media attention, and not all of it has been positive, with some alleging the serivce amounts to an unwarranted privacy intrusion.

However, Andersson tells The Local that she is not fazed:

“I think that if you don’t have anything to hide yourself – why be upset about this service existing? There are obviously people who need this service – we have seen that in the weeks we have been open."

Rebecca Martin

Follow Rebecca on Twitter here

Related links:

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

19:02 October 19, 2012 by Vendorune
This really don't make any sense... If you are a woman and can't keep track of your man why would you want to hire another woman?
19:42 October 19, 2012 by Mxzf
Vendorune, that doesn't make sense either. Turn it:

"This really don't make any sense... If you are a woman and can't keep track of your man why would you want to hire another man? "

I think a lot of women would be more open to hire another woman in a confidential, sensitive situation like this.
20:09 October 19, 2012 by skogsbo
korv trap? There is something questionable about the honey trap, a give might not be having an affair, until he is lured into it, but then the honey is being paid, so she'll put a lot of work into luring the guy. Wonder if any guys make a living as korv bait?
04:42 October 20, 2012 by Programmeny
The article ends in: "I think that if you don't have anything to hide yourself - why be upset about this service existing? There are obviously people who need this service - we have seen that in the weeks we have been open." As an excuse to invasion of privacy. That's dumb.

What if I DO have something to hide?
09:13 October 20, 2012 by RobinHood
Why is a woman running a detective agency newsworthy? Are women detectives, in some way, deemed exceptional? A female detective in Sweden should be no more worthy of comment than, say a female bus driver or a female accountant.

Sweden has come a long way since jobs such as nurses or truck drivers were gender specific. This article is a step backwards The Local.
Today's headlines
Science
Swedish women in two-year sex pill study
Contraceptive pills have been linked to mood swings. Photo: Shutterstock

Swedish women in two-year sex pill study

Three hundred women from across Sweden are taking part in a study designed to demonstrate that modern contraceptive pills don't lead to decreased libido or mood swings. READ  

National
Dog attack policewoman acquitted on appeal
A scene from a video of the attack published by Dagens Nyheter

Dog attack policewoman acquitted on appeal

A policewoman accused of letting her dog attack a drunk man while she repeatedly hit him with a baton, has had her conviction overturned by a court in Stockholm. READ  

Entertainment
What's On: October 31st - November 7th
Uma Thurman will soon be on her way to Stockholm. Photo: TT

What's On: October 31st - November 7th

Halloween fun and an international film festival are the big events hitting Stockholm this week. We cast our eye over the capital and the rest of the country for the best activities to check out this week. READ  

International
Pirate Bay Swede found guilty in Denmark
Gottrid Svartholm Warg. File photo: TT

Pirate Bay Swede found guilty in Denmark

Sweden's Pirate Bay Founder Gottrid Svartholm Warg was found guilty of hacking crimes in a Danish court on Thursday. READ  

National
Malmö loses out as rare toads move in
The European green toad. Photo: H. Krisp (WikiCommons)

Malmö loses out as rare toads move in

After a rare species of toad moved into southern Sweden's Malmö, builders have had to tone down massive expansion plans in the area. READ  

Politics
Palestine recognized as state by Sweden
Palestinians in Gaza last month. Photo: Adel Hana

Palestine recognized as state by Sweden

The Swedish government has officially decided to recognize Palestine, with the move announced in a speech by the country's new Foreign Minister Margot Wallström. READ  

Interview
Stockholm's shocking take on Halloween
For ten days, Globen is transformed into a giant pumpkin. Photo: Shockholm

Stockholm's shocking take on Halloween

American Bill Schacht missed the spooky outfits, family feasts and charity events he associated with Halloween when he moved to Sweden. So he did something about it. The Local meets the founder of the capital's annual Shockholm parade. READ  

Business & Money
Huge losses for energy giant Vattenfall
A Vattenfall plant in Germany. Photo: TT

Huge losses for energy giant Vattenfall

Swedish energy company Vattenfall has reported losses for the third quarter in a row. READ  

International
Malala donates prize winnings to Gaza
Malala receives the Children's Prize from Queen Silvia. Photo: TT

Malala donates prize winnings to Gaza

UPDATED: Girls' rights champion Malala Yousafzai, who was in Sweden to accept the World's Children's Prize on Wednesday, said she would use all her winnings to help rebuild schools in war-ravaged Gaza. READ  

Swedish Honeymoon Killing
Cape Town 'fixer' phoned Dewani before killing
Dewani in a Cape Town court. Photo: TT

Cape Town 'fixer' phoned Dewani before killing

A man jailed for killing British businessman Shrien Dewani's wife during their Cape Town honeymoon said on Wednesday they spoke shortly before the murder to discuss payment. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
Gallery
People-watching: October 30th
National
Sweden remains fourth best for gender equality
National
Timeline: Julian Assange sex allegations
Sport
World Cup ski race on 'fake' Stockholm slope
Blog updates

29 October

Scariest day (Blogweiser) »

"This is what’s frightening me on Halloween. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D4OFZVCu8J0&list=UUJu5J7jG4uoYSjWbpFsJBuQ Follow my posts on FB. ..." READ »

 

24 October

Editor’s blog, October 24th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Get ready to read our weekly digest of Swedish news in less than 60 seconds. The..." READ »

 
 
 
Society
An Arctic tradition: hunting and handicraft
Society
Stockholm taxis offer free therapy sessions
National
The Local meets Health Minister Gabriel Wikström
Gallery
Property of the week: Österåker
Society
Homeless turtles get Stockholm police ride
National
Construction worker has 'Sweden's best beard'
National
Italian musician jazzes up Sweden's Lapland
Gallery
Zlatan's career in pictures
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching: October 25th and 26th
Lifestyle
'Swedes are funnier than they think'
National
Swedish town 'like Venice' after heavy rains
Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: October 24th - 31st
Gallery
People-watching: October 22nd
Gallery
In Pictures: Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist
Lifestyle
Eight things to love about renting a Swedish apartment
National
Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden
National
Sub hunt: Day-by-day
National
Sub hunt: Stockholm islanders share their fears with The Local
Sponsored Article
The best options for oversea transfers
National
Dentist gives free care to Roma beggars
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

994
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN