According to Ina van der Merwe, Director and CEO, Managed Integrity Evaluation (MIE), qualification fraud is fast becoming a significant problem in South Africa – increasing by 200% over the last five years (2009 – 2014) and impacting even the highest executive levels. “The massive increase in the last five years refers to qualifications we have found to be falsified, invalid or inconsistent. This includes those which have been purchased from a ‘degree mill, altered or simply included on a CV with no physical or recorded evidence,” van der Merwe explains. “Unfortunately, as these fraudsters enter the workforce, a number of honest and legitimately qualified individuals are side-lined for the respective position,” she adds. The biggest culprits? Van der Merwe shares that the sector recording the highest percentage of qualification fraud is the trade industry.