4 ways to identify a fake degree certificate

4 ways to identify a fake degree certificate
15/05/2019 Qualification Check

Alarmingly, the number of fake degrees is on the increase with ‘Diploma Mills’ giving people easy access to purchase counterfeit documents, which is now a world-wide problem for employers who are responsible for verifying qualifications.

Under the Fraud Act 2006, it is illegal for anyone to use fake degree certificates as genuine documents and by using fake certificates whilst applying for jobs, they could receive a prison sentence of up to ten years.

However, 80% of companies admit that they don’t verify their employees’ qualifications – are you amongst these? To stay safe and compliant, please read the following ways for employers to identify a fake degree certificate:

  • Design

Inspecting the design of the certificate is key. Genuine degrees are embossed and have a gold seal and if you bring the certificate against a bright light, there should be a hologram watermark visible. The signature should also not be printed, as genuine certificates have signatures which are written in ink and they do not contain any spelling mistakes.

  • Language

The language on the certificates should also be inspected thoroughly. The use of Latin terminology on a degree certificate is a warning sign. Expressions such as ‘cum laude’ are popular with US universities, whereas UK higher education institutions (HEIs) use ‘with honours’.UK providers have not issued degree certificates in Latin for at least 10 years.

Also note the order of the words used such as ‘Sheffield University’ which should be ‘The University of Sheffield’ or ‘Sheffield Hallam University’.

  • University location and domains

An effective way to identify fake degrees is to obtain confirmation of the University’s address. By using Google to locate the address provided is an effective way to spot bogus universities. Also researching the University domains used is important. The fundamental rule is, if it doesn’t look like a university website address, it probably isn’t.

  • Trust the professionals

By undertaking the steps mentioned in this article, this process can take time and may prove inaccurate, especially when checking qualifications which are undertaken oversees. This is when using a professional degree verification solution to verify qualifications is the most effective option.

Qualification Check provides an automated qualification verification solution for employers across the globe. By registering with us online, we can check at source the authenticity of degrees and qualifications whether undertaken in the UK or oversees, at over 40,000 universities, colleges and other professional bodies worldwide making the verification process much easier.

Our international qualification verification solution is efficient, secure and accurate which will help save you time whilst remaining 100% compliant.

To start using our qualification checking solution, a trusted verification service used by world-wide clients, register for free on our website by visiting www.qualificationcheck.com or call us for a demonstration on (+44) 0203 289 3022.


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