Eyes don't betray lies
There is no significant correlation between eye movement and lying.
According to research in the free online journal PloS One, where someone is looking when they tell you something doesn't have much of a correlation to whether they are lying or not.
Neuro-Linguistic Programming is the idea that certain physical cues can tell you if someone is telling you the truth or not - cues such as eye movement, with right handed people supposedly looking up and to the right when making things up.
This concept has long been cited in popular culture, so a group of researchers decided to have a closer look, devising a series of tests to see if it held water.
The first test was to get a group of people to go into a room. Half the people were told to put a cell phone in a drawer, the other half were told to lie about it.
They were then interviewed by researchers who didn't know who was supposed to be lying and who wasn't. The subjects of the test were filmed close up to catch their eye movements.
The eye movements did not prove much of a predictor of who was lying, according to the paper.
A second test was lined up with people who had been told the principle of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, being asked to spot who was lying while watching the videos. The researchers found that there still wasn't much of a relationship between watching eye movement and lie detecting.
The third and final test involved taking videos where there was strong evidence that the person making the video was lying, and videos where there was strong evidence that the person making them were telling the truth, and comparing them.
These videos involved people pleading for the safe return of a relative. According to the researchers, the ones who evidence suggested were lying, tended to keep their videos brief and use more vague terms than the ones who evidence suggested were telling the truth.