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Not vetting your hires can hurt

We live in an information age, and with sources of knowledge and services proliferating at an ever increasing rate it is easy for employers to think that there is no simple way to check a potential employees’ background. Checkback was created to help employers find their way through the maze of the internet age.


For dishonest candidates, it is remarkably easy to perpetrate a fraud. In fact, for as little as £30, you can purchase a novelty degree certificate online. Pick your university, course and qualification and within 48 hours it’s yours, complete with seals and crests. This makes life extremely difficult for potential employers to spot fakes and often they will simply give up on the process of qualification and background checking.


However, failing to properly check a potential new recruits’ past can have potentially expensive consequences. Recently in Manchester, Wade Jordan was jailed for three years for fraud and perverting the course of justice. Jordan landed an HR role at biotechnology firm, Qiagen by falsely claiming he had an MA from Manchester Metropolitan University. He went on to swindle almost £50,000 in fraudulent expense claims.


In the UK employers can be fined up to £20,000 for not ensuring that their employees have the right to work in the country and it makes sense that this will also include an identity check to confirm that the person named on any permissions is indeed the one you are employing. In addition, the airport industry is bound by the terms of the Aviation and Maritime Security Act 1990 and all businesses involved with UK airports must screen potential staff in line with this Act.


We often think of employee fraud in terms of the big, headline cases where employees make off with the company silverware however businesses need to be aware that there are many ways that an unscrupulous worker can cause damage to their company, not only in terms of money but also reputation.


Top City lawyer Dennis O’Riordan was exposed as a fake after it was discovered that he lied on his CV about attending Harvard and Oxford universities. O’Riordan also claimed to be a member of the Irish and New York Bar and had obtained high ranking roles with Sumitomo and Nomura amongst others 1.


The problem here is that, although there is no suggestion that O’Riordan stole from anyone, the firms where he acted as, amongst other things ‘special consultant’ may be liable for bad advice given to clients not to mention the reputational damage that they have sustained.


What is interesting is that so many very large firms gave such high ranking positions to someone that turned out to be somewhat suspect, thus proving that anyone can be caught out. A simple background and qualifications check from Checkback would have instantly shown that there were questions to answer


Unfortunately it isn’t simply the accounting and high level staff that have to be vetted. Call centres make attractive targets for criminals as working in this environment gives ready access to credit card and other valuable customer information. In fact in a recent study software firm Symantec found that most employees steal corporate data and don’t believe it to be wrong2

The consequences of an information and data breach for a company don’t bear thinking about and Checkback offers a cost effective and simple method of minimising this risk by undertaking thorough yet cost pre-employment screening checks on potential staff.


Employers need to be wary about offering positions to people, be they high ranking executives or call centre operators without first asking Checkback to confirm that they are who they say they are and have the CV to match. As we have seen there can be dire consequences for the firm, both in terms of money and reputation.

If you’d like to find out more about our services and how they can help you minimise the risk call our Dublin office on +3531 4568218 or our UK office at +44 845 643 5836

1 https://www.barstandardsboard.org.uk/media/1575319/o_riordan_v_bsb.pdf

2 http://www.symantec.com/about/news/release/article.jsp?prid=20130206_01&om_ext_cid=biz_socmed_twitter_facebook_marketwire_linkedin_2013Feb_worldwide_InsiderThreat