Private investigators are most commonly associated with scorned spouses and cheap motels, but one PI firm based in New York is sniffing out scandal in a much more upscale (and more unusual) venue: the boardrooms of Fortune 500 companies. Murray Associates, a counterespionage security company, has been de-bugging conference rooms and securing trading floors from the prying eyes of sneaky competitors since 1978.
The firm was founded by Kevin Murray, former director of investigations and electronic countermeasures for Pinkerton (the famed detective agency best known for rounding up notorious outlaws like Jesse James and Butch Cassidy in the days of the Wild West). Today, Murray Associates specializes in the kind of spy-catching activities you thought only happened in James Bond movies.
Need someone to check your office building for recording devices? As experts in technical surveillance countermeasures (TSCM), Murray and his team can do that and more. Want to know if an employee is spilling company secrets? Murray Associates specializes in conducting business espionage security surveys that pinpoint in-house vulnerabilities.
And this high-stakes business serves more than just your average office park. Murray and his team have also taken their spy-catching know-how to some pretty weird locales. The company's most unusual assignment locations include a corporate aircraft, the depths of an underground wine cellar and the deck of a 900-foot ocean liner. Over its 35-year history, Murray Associates has also fought espionage in cookie factories, precious-metal refineries and secret government facilities.
In an age in which intellectual property laws are vague and advanced technology makes eavesdropping easy, Murray Associates is the kind of under-the-radar business destined for success. But in case you were wondering if Murray and his fellow spy catchers dabble in the dark side of corporate espionage — you know, the side that does the spying — the answer is no. The company's website explicitly states that it specializes only in pro-privacy services.
Originally published on Business News Daily.