Dangerous Instincts: Use an FBI Profiler's Tactics to Avoid Unsafe Situations (Paperback)

Dangerous Instincts: Use an FBI Profiler's Tactics to Avoid Unsafe Situations By Mary Ellen O'Toole, Ph.D, Alisa Bowman Cover Image
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Fear can't help you in a dangerous situation. A former FBI profiler shows you what can.

As one of the world's top experts on psychopathy and criminal behavior, Mary Ellen O'Toole has seen repeatedly how relying on the sense of fear alone often fails to protect us from danger. Whether you are opening the door to a stranger or meeting a date you connected with online, you need to know how to protect yourself from harm-physical, financial, legal, and professional.

Using the SMART method, which O'Toole developed and used at the FBI, we can confidently know how to:

  • Respond to a threat in any situation
  • Hire someone who will work inside your home like a contractor or housekeeper
  • Figure out whether a prospective employee is a safe bet
  • Know whom you can trust with your children

    An especially useful book for women living alone, parents who are concerned about their children's safety, and employers worried about employees who might go postal, Dangerous Instincts gives us the tools used by professionals to navigate potentially hazardous waters. Like The Gift of Fear and The Sociopath Next Door, it will appeal to anyone looking to make the right call in an ever threatening world.

About the Author

Mary Ellen O’Toole, Ph.D., retired from the FBI in 2009. During her career, she worked on many high-profile cases including the Elizabeth Smart abduction, the Unabomber and the Green River Killer. She continues to teach at the FBI National Academy, lectures at the Smithsonian and frequently speaks to law enforcement, government officials, mental health practitioners, school officials, private corporations and the public all over the world.


Alisa Bowman is a professional writer and collaborator. The co-author of seven New York Times bestsellers, her work has appeared in Prevention, Better Homes & Gardens, Women’s Health and numerous other publications.

Praise For…

“Mary Ellen O’Toole is my hero! In Dangerous Instincts she offers sound advice and fascinating examples gleaned from her long career in the Behavioral Analysis Unit of the FBI. This book will save many lives—including, quite possibly, your own. Whether the knowledge you find herein saves you from a con man, a rapist, a thief, a killer, or just a miserable marriage, this is a classic, valuable book. I recommend it highly to all my family, friends, and readers.”—Ann Rule, author of THE STRANGER BESIDE ME

“A masterful and compelling primer on survival in a world in which people are not always what we think them to be. Dr. O’Toole’s deep understanding of the nature and implications of psychopathy. . . is particularly impressive, and shared by only a few other criminal investigators. This is an important and well-written book on topics of concern to everyone. A great read, highly recommended.”—Robert Hare, Ph.D., author of WITHOUT CONSCIENCE

“In this absorbing read, [O’Toole] discusses why people trusted Bernie Madoff and Ted Bundy and dissects online dating responses and typical blind spots. The author helps readers analyze their decision-making patterns and provides a guide for helping them to assess and mitigate risk. O’Toole’s book will provide insight to everyone, but it’s particularly helpful for women living alone, parents concerned about their children’s safety, or employers worried about perplexing employee behavior.”—Library Journal

Product Details
ISBN: 9780452298521
ISBN-10: 0452298520
Publisher: Plume
Publication Date: September 25th, 2012
Pages: 288
Language: English