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INCREASED TUITION FEES TO BOOST FAKE DEGREES

Ahead of tomorrow’s House of Commons vote on tuition fees, CV verification and background screening expert, Verifile Limited, is concerned that an increase in tuition fees will lead to an increase in bogus universities and push more people to buy fake degrees from the criminals who run these organisations.

Verifile Limited owns Accredibase™, the world’s largest database of fake universities, or “degree mills”. Since the release of the company’s comprehensive report in January*, the number of confirmed bogus institutions** claiming to operate from the UK, has risen by an alarming 24%, taking the number of degree mills to 337 in the UK alone. In addition, a further 219 institutions are suspected mills and are currently under investigation. The majority of suspected mills are later confirmed as bogus upon completion of the investigation.

Eyal Ben Cohen, Managing Director of Verifile Limited said: “It’s clear that fake institutions are on the rise in the UK and the Government is not doing enough to fight it. In costly education systems like the USA, degree mills are everywhere. We fear that pushing up the cost of UK education will only increase the demand for fake universities and encourage more people to use their bogus ‘degrees’ as a way to improve chances of employment.”

Ben Cohen continues: “Whilst the use of fake qualifications puts a candidate’s personal honesty and integrity in question, the damage to an employer can be far more significant as proved in a recent court case involving BSkyB and EDS. The case found a senior EDS manager and key witness to have lied about the origins of an MBA degree. The judge ruled that EDS should pay £709 million pounds to BSkyB.”

“It is hard to believe that candidates are not aware of what they are doing when they originally purchase their ‘degrees’ without taking classes or sitting in exams, yet tens of thousands of individuals are using degrees purchased from degree mills over the internet. And you find them from all walks of life from IT to security, health, education, management, government and more. If tuition fees are to increase, we must expect the incidence of fake degrees to also rise. Where the Government is not prepared to fight this problem effectively, it would be advisable for organisations to be more thorough when they carry out background checks” concluded Ben Cohen.

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* A copy of the report can be found at http://www.accredibase.com/index.php?section=871&page=4493
** Institutions that have been fully researched and have enough evidence to be labelled as mills.

To see recent case studies of the use of diploma mills degrees, please visit: http://www.accredibase.com/index.php?section=868&page=5174

For further information please contact Eyal Ben Cohen at Verifile on 01234 834670 / 07904 308287 or email ebc@verifile.co.uk

About Accredibase

Accredibase is the first resource of its kind designed to help professionals, involved in education verification, weed out qualifications from bogus universities, colleges and high schools. It offers constantly updated information, built using data gathered from law enforcement agencies and independent research. Accredibase currently has 5,147 institutions in its database. Of those, 2,587 have been positively identified as mills, 2,560 are currently being investigated and suspicious new institutions are being added daily.

www.accredibase.com

About Verifile Limited

Verifile is Europe’s fastest growing pre-employment screening company. Its comprehensive range of services allows employers to verify employment, qualifications, identity, criminal records and credit histories globally. This is offered through innovative solutions which are quick, easy to use and affordable. Its services are used by clients around the world, in a wide variety of sectors, with over 30% of checks conducted outside the UK.

www.verifile.co.uk