COLLEGE
08/02/2010 04:56 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

New Technology Can Detect Terrorists Before The Strike: Northwestern Study

It may soon be possible to predict where and when the next terrorist attack will occur.

In a recent study, Northwestern University researchers were able to chart how P300 brain waves corresponded with the actions of perceived terrorists. The Times of India details:

The most intriguing part of the study in terms of real-word implications, [Northwestern professor Peter] Rosenfeld said, is that even when the researchers had no advance details about mock terrorism plans, the technology was still accurate in identifying critical concealed information. "Without any prior knowledge of the planned crime in our mock terrorism scenarios, we were able to identify 10 out of 12 terrorists and, among them, 20 out of 30 crime-related details," Rosenfeld said.

The article states that study participants created a plan of attack and using the P300 testing, the researchers were able to discover 10 of the 12 participants and many of the details involved.

The Smithsonian Magazine reports that Rosenfeld began studying P300 technology as a way of detecting deception in 1983. Rosenfeld claims that, unlike a polygraph, P300 provides the tester the ability to infer that a subject is lying even if he or she says nothing.