The polygraph techniques listed below met the scientific requirements of the American Polygraph Association to be classified as Evidentiary Polygraph Techniques which require a minimum criterion accuracy of 90% with an inconclusive rate not to exceed 20%.
Three types of studies were used to validate these polygraph techniques:
Uses actual real-life polygraph examinations whose results are confirmed with acceptable scientific or judicial evidence.
Uses a mock crime with participants assigned the role of Guilty or Innocent examinees.
Uses a statistical method that is based on repeated random sampling of data from independent source of confirmed field cases that is used to estimate polygraph decision accuracy.
The Backster Zone Comparison Technique from which all other Zone Comparison Techniques originate is undergoing further validation that is expected to raise its standing as an evidentiary technique. The following studies reflect its current validation status.
NOTE: The Nelson, Handler, Adams, Backster 2012 study used field cases from a government agency, some of which used formats that deviated from the Backster Zone Comparison Technique protocol which resulted in an accuracy rate below the expected minimum 90% criterion accuracy required for classification as an evidentiary technique.
Notice: There are several other polygraph techniques currently in use in the public and private sector with accuracy rates that range from 87% to as low as 61%, the latter being the Army Modified General Question Technique (MGQT) whose accuracy rate in the identification of Truthful cases (25% correct) should be of concern to defense attorneys in particular. The following published research studies on the MGQT are listed below: