In light of the latest reports from careers organisation, Prospects, that it has investigated 200 potential cases of degree fraud in the last four years and closed down 75 websites falsely offering UK degrees, leading global provider of employment background checks, Sterling Talent Solutions, has urged employers to ensure they are verifying information from applicants.
In news revealed this week, Prospects highlighted a concerning number of fake degrees that were being used by applicants and urged everyone involved in the recruitment supply chain to ensure the correct verification procedures are in place. This latest announcement comes at a time when false claims on CVs are on the rise, with research from The University of Law stating that 51% of Brits have felt pressure to lie on their application.
However, despite the rise of fake education and training information on CVs, research from Sterling revealed that one in five employers do not have a background screening policy in place.
Steve Smith, Managing Director EMEA at Sterling, explained why businesses need to ensure they complete the necessary verification checks:
“In a world of fake news where fraudsters are becoming ever more sophisticated in their use of technology to fabricate educational and training credentials, it’s perhaps no surprise that Prospects has unearthed a number of illegitimate websites. However, while many firms are more than aware of the trend towards falsifying applications, there’s still a worrying number of employers failing to implement the right checks, exposing themselves, their staff and their company to potential risk. You have to ask yourself, if an applicant has a fraudulent degree, what else they are being less than honest about?”
“For firms seeking to implement robust checks, there are a few basic steps that should be taken. By going directly to registrars (or doing so through third-party screening providers) it’s possible to identify immediate red-flags. Diploma mills now also have university websites where you can go to check the validity of a certificate. Of course, as fraud becomes more sophisticated, there will be a need for improved procedures, so it’s always advisable to seek out expert guidance.”