Catching the counterfeit colleagues: The insider risks from identity document fraud

Terrorist and criminal organisations have the capability to print false passports and other identity documents. These can be used to enter the UK illegally, obtain employment, banking, housing, access to sites and hire vehicles for unlawful purposes as a few examples. Terrorists have used false identities when planning attacks.

Identity document fraud can be conducted in a number of ways. Most cases of identity document misuse relate to passport fraud. Here are three ways in which Identity fraud can be conducted using documents:

Imposters – Where the holder of the document may look like the rightful owner.

Counterfeit – A document made from scratch to resemble an official document. An example would be a counterfeit degree certificate or other qualifications, and CVs.

Forgery – A genuine document which has been altered for criminal purposes. The most common alterations are photo substitution, altering personal details, adding stamps or visas.

Document verification is the process of ensuring that documents presented are genuine and that the holder is the rightful owner. It is also an integral part of the pre-employment screening process. Staff responsible for checking documents should be provided with the knowledge, training and tools needed to confirm the authenticity of documents, and identify basic forgeries. It is important that your document verification processes are integrated within your wider Pre-Employment Screening policies.

It is essential that all documents are examined thoroughly. The document verification process should be explained to all applicants as part of the recruitment process, highlighting which documents are requested and why, e.g. to guard against identity fraud and forgery. It is important to outline how important document verification is to your organisation and that you will seek to confirm the authenticity of relevant documentation prior to any employment offer.

Colmore BID can assist any of our BID Members who wish to learn more about combatting the insider threat through Fraudulent Document Awareness training.

Colmore BID is working with the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit to provide free-to-attend awareness sessions. These interactive group workshops will enable staff to get ‘hands on’ and examine documents to determine if they are real or fake. By the end of the session staff will have a better understanding of how to spot fake documents and reduce the risks posed by insider threats.

These awareness sessions are approximately 2.5 hrs duration and can be arranged to best suit the target audience.

If you would like to know more about this additional BID service please contact Paul Street, Strategic Project Officer – Safe & Sound.

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