Resume fraud brings new scrutiny to the meaning of experience

The CEO of Yahoo lied on his resume and was forced out. Several other high profile CEOs have done the same in industry and academia. We asked our Zintro experts to offer tools and ideas that boards of directors or company executives can use to research and combat resume fraud.


Anjana Wijegunasinghe, an internal audit specialist, says that the most important thing that employers can do to prevent fraud is to conduct a pre-employment screening. “To avoid any liabilities in hiring, pre-employment screening is instrumental. Honesty and integrity is imperative to any organization; hence, verifying the details mentioned in the resume is the first interaction between the potential candidate and the employee,” she says. “This action provides an indication of the reliability and the integrity of the person and the information provided. Pre-recruitment screening should be carried out with due diligence and reasonable activities to identify foreseeable conduct before making a commitment for hiring and any claims for negligence hiring.”


When conduction this type of assessment, Wijegunasinghe suggests looking for these issues:

Past Employment
• Gaps in employment
• Frequent job changes
• Vague job descriptions
• Exaggerations of responsibilities
• Claims of proficiency in specific skills
Education and Certification
• Education confirmation should include proof of accreditation for the institution being verified. Make sure it’s not a diploma mill
• Use the transcripts to verify grades and degrees



  • Verify job title, salary, dates of employment and responsibilities.
  • Pay close attention that dates of employment provided by the applicant match the dates of employment given by the employer.
  • Be most concerned with weak references.


“Obtaining references from people with whom the candidate has directly worked is advantageous, says Wijegunasinghe. “It’s ideal if the candidate can provide the name of at least one former supervisor, a peer, and a subordinate. The key is to objectively evaluate an employee’s performance over time and from different points of view.”


Juan Carlos Venegas, a counter fraud specialist, says that employers should carry out employee screening during the selection or recruitment process. “The information entered in the resume by applicants should be verified with previous employers along with academic records. In this way, the new employer will have a better idea on the qualifications and competencies of the candidate, and it may prevent fraud within the organization.”

By Maureen Aylward

Zintro, Inc

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