'Liars For Hire' Provides Fake References For Job Seekers
When it comes to looking for a job, it pays to be honest. Or does it? A company called the Reference Store has raised the ire of some employment professionals for providing fake references to job seekers with less-than-stellar work histories.
"They are absolutely right. We are professional liars," Everett Davis, Reference Store founder and president, tells KRIV-TV in Houston. The online business fabricates professional resumes and provides credible telephone references for as little as $50.
Davis justifies his enterprise by saying that he's providing a service that helps put people back to work, earning money to pay mortgages, college loans and other bills that might otherwise go unpaid.
Noting that lying on a resume isn't a crime, Davis tells the Fox News affiliate that his service is "perfectly legal," although it may raise moral objections among some.
Likening it to a game, Davis says the retired intelligence professionals he's hired to provide legitimate references are adept at deception and countermeasures.
"It's almost child's play," Davis says of his company's efforts to deceive hiring managers.
Still, Davis says, he will only go so far and won't provide fake references for those seeking jobs in public safety, health care or schools.
"Those are our kids and we are not going to put them at risk," he tells the TV station.
Employment expert Tiffany Higginbotham implores desperate job seekers not to give in to Davis' pitch. Though paying someone a modest sum to provide seemingly legitimate references may seem like a good deal, it could come back to haunt workers.
"This type of situation is a definite setup for failure," Higginbotham says. What's more, many employers have policies that require applicants to provide truthful information on paperwork they provide during the hiring process.
Failure to do so could result in workers finding themselves back on the unemployment line -- should an employer find out.
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David Schepp has spent more than a dozen years covering business news for the electronic and print media, including Dow Jones Newswires, BBC News, Gannett Co., and most recently at AOL's DailyFinance. Nearly 10 years ago, he started writing a weekly People@Work column, looking in depth at issues facing workers in today's workplace. The syndicated column appeared in newspapers and websites nationwide before it made its debut on DailyFinance in 2010. Schepp now continues that tradition at Aol Jobs, covering the jobs beat and providing readers insight and analysis into the nation's challenging employment scene.
Schepp holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Metropolitan State College of Denver.
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