Criminals busted on CVs

ResumeOne in eight CVs that land on the desks of potential employers hides a criminal record.

This is according to background screening company Employers’ Mutual Protection Service, which has revealed that job applicants with criminal records increased from 11% last year to 12% this year.

Moreover, 38% of those found to have criminal records were repeat offenders, with some having up to 20 convictions.

According to statistics, 65% of job applicants who were found to have criminal records committed offences in the past 10 years.

EMPS managing director Kirsten Halcrow said the sophisticated screening procedure was making it near impossible for fraudulent applicants to beat the system.

“We have reached the point where there is no place to hide for criminals and qualification fraudsters to enter the job market.

“In spite of that, people still think they can get away with their fraud,” said Halcrow.

Altered matric results, fake tertiary qualifications and fake South African IDs were also common among fraudulent job applicants.

EMPS was unable to verify 7.6% of tertiary qualifications submitted for verification in the first half of this year due to institutions no longer existing, inaccurate records or fake qualifications from degree mills in various parts of the world.

Symbols and subjects in one out of 10 matric certificates, most being from the Department of Education, were altered, though in an “amateurish” manner.

It takes between 24 and 48 hours for EMPS to verify matric results obtained after 1992 with Umalusi, and up to seven days with the Department of Education for matric results obtained prior to 1992.

Job applicants mostly replaced less desirable subjects with ones that are highly valued in the workplace – such as maths and science – said Halcrow, who added that companies that did not verify the authenticity of documents handed in by job applicants were setting themselves up for a fall.

“It is common knowledge that unemployment is on the rise and that only applicants with the best grades in the most desirable subjects stand a chance of getting employed,” Halcrow said.

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