The Saudi Ministry of Higher Education has uncovered 110 offices selling forged degrees from non-Saudi universities, press reports said yesterday.
“The agencies were supplying these bogus degrees for the past several years,” said Muhammad Al-Ouhali, undersecretary at the Ministry of Higher Education for academic matters.
The degrees supplied by the swindling agencies are not authentic or approved by any official body.
Fake degrees are also being supplied by some institutions that run courses without fulfilling the approved standards, according to Al-Madinah, a daily Arabic language newspaper.
The ministry has taken steps to identity the agencies that supply forged degrees, the official said.
“The ministry has set up a special department to crack down on the issuance of false degrees. The department can verify the authenticity of any degree by contacting the institution that purportedly issued the document.
The names of those holding forged degrees will not be found in any university register,” Al-Ouhali said. He added the number of forged degrees was not high compared to the number of agencies supplying such certificates in various parts of the world.
Prices for a fake bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degree range from SR10,000 to SR30,000 and in some cases the price of doctorate degree goes up to SR90,000.
The Internet has made it easier than ever to canvass candidates for bogus certification. An agent supplying fake degrees needs only to create a website that looks like it belongs to a genuine university. The site would provide online payment options for customers as well as details for prospective employers who might contact them to verify whether a degree is genuine or not, according to US media reports.
Source : bikyamasr