Researchers seeking more reliable lie detection methods are experimenting with brain scan technologies.
July 24, 2002
Researchers seeking more reliable lie detection methods are experimenting with brain scan technologies such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). First they must create a scenario in which study subjects will lie predictably. Then they observe blood flow within subjects' brains as they alternately fib and tell the truth. The result: Scientists are starting to identify the specific areas in the brain where lies are formed.
1. What You're Told
You're shown three envelopes and told each contains a different card and $20. You choose one, open it, and are told if you can hide your card from the machine, you'll keep the $20.
This fMRI image shows brain areas that receive more blood flow when a person is lying. The anterior cingulate cortex (A) manages conflicting impulses; the left lateral prefrontal cortex (B) is involved in response inhibition.