Singapore authorities sentenced a woman to jail for forging her educational qualifications in her job application.
A recent case that has gotten the Singapore public buzzing is the sentencing of Zhong Anqi Angela, 43, for forging her qualifications in applying for a job as a preschool teacher.
No PhotoShop needed. Documents were falsified with Microsoft Paint.
What was perhaps more shocking to the public was how the candidate falsified her documents simply by using a simple software, Microsoft Paint.
There were no advanced PhotoShop skills involved here. The candidate admitted that she had obtained a copy of the letter online through a Google search, and edited them to amend the name, dates and other details.
While her GCE O-Level certificate was genuine, the grades were not as the candidate edited her English grade from a D7 to B3.
The Deputy Public Prosecutor for the case, Wong Shiau Yin, in reviewing the documents, even acknowledged that they were unlikely to be detected from a quick look.
Can you trust your candidates’ self-declarations?
In this age of digital software and image manipulation tools, it is a fact that some employers still choose to forgo conducting background checks prior to hiring. Instead, many continue to rely on candidates to self-declare any wrongdoings or misdeeds.
But if your candidate deliberately falsified or hid certain information for you in order to increase their chances of getting hired, what are the odds that they will admit it to you?
In this particular case, when questioned, Angela Zhong initially denied all wrongdoing and even insisted that the (forged) document was genuine. It was only after further investigations revealed that it was clearly forged, that she admitted to the deed.
Her offence only came to light after checks by the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) with the issuing institutions and found that the documents could not be verified.
The candidate’s defence counsel, in trying to reduce her sentencing, pointed out how she was previously employed in the early childhood sector for over a decade and had completed a Montessori diploma programme. However, in lying and falsifying her credentials so that she could apply to become a kindergarten teacher, the court District Judge Eugene Teo said that while there was nothing wrong in doing one’s best to support the family, but “there’s obviously a right way and a wrong way”.
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