Newsletter subscribe


5 Things You Need to Know About Covert Transcription

Posted: November 20, 2017 at 6:57 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Transcription is used in many industries, for a whole host of purposes, and it is always challenging. But one transcription situation is certainly more challenging than all of the others. This is covert or undercover transcription.

Covert transcription is usually requested for use in a legal trial, dispute, or court case. Typically, a solicitor, police officer, forensic scientist, or other official will request the covert transcription. Here are some other key factors concerning covert transcription and its importance.

1. Covert Transcription is Difficult to Decipher 

The recording devices used to collect the discussions are, obviously, hidden in covert transcription. This means that no one knows the recording is taking place and there will therefore be a lot of background noise, garbled speech, and confusing sounds to decipher as the transcriptionist gets to the heart of what is actually said. It can take up to one hour to confidently decipher just three minutes of covert recording, according to

2. It Requires Specialist Equipment

Usually transcribers work with highly sensitive headphones and use special software when they are working with covert recordings. This is because of how difficult the speech is to discern, and the need to work very slowly.

3. Covert Transcribers Are Highly Skilled

It does take a real expert to transcribe this kind of material. There is a great deal of patience involved as the person must spend hours listening to the smallest segments of recording. It is not a job for someone who likes to see results immediately. Expert transcribers work hard to listen to and decipher the most challenging and problematic audio and turn it into a document that can be confidently used in court or by professionals in investigations.

4. It Must Be Absolutely Accurate

Covert transcription, or hidden mic transcription, must be completely accurate since the record of these conversations will be used to provide evidence. This is called a verbatim transcription and it is essential that it can be relied upon as evidence. If something were to be wrongly interpreted or transcribed it could mean the difference between a case succeeding or failing.

5. This Transcription is Confidential

And, it goes without saying, covert transcription is confidential. It is important that only trusted transcription companies work on this type of transcription job since it is sensitive and there is a need for absolute accuracy.


Image: Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/


Comments (0)

write a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.