For years, desperate job-hunters have put Mama down as a “former business manager” to boost their chances of landing a job.
But you know times are tough for the unemployed when at least two companies — CareerExcuse.com and AlibiHQ.com — are selling fake references.
ABC: While it’s hard to verify whether Schmidt’s [of CareerExcuse.com] service — which charges customers $64 per year after a three-day free trial — has actually benefited anyone, he’s not the only one claiming to help people lie to secure work in a tough economy. The Web site Alibi HQ also advertises fake job reference services.
A man identifying himself as Mark Stevens, an Alibi HQ spokesman, told ABCNews.com that the company, which also offers fake landlord references and fake doctor’s notes, has been operating for several years. He said customer interest in employment references skyrocketed over the last year, with calls from people seeking Alibi HQ’s services quadrupling — a trend Stevens attributed to the increase in job seekers left unemployed by the recession.
Using fake references is hardly a national epidemic. But apparently they’re used by all sorts of folks: Hassan Nemazee, a wealthy investor and Democratic fundraiser, was just busted for a $74 million fraud of Citibank. As The New York Times noted yesterday, fake references were a central party of his alleged scheme:
Mr. Nemazee also gave Citibank phone numbers and addresses of various financial institutions that would purportedly vouch for his financial strength, but the numbers were controlled by him, the complaint said. It said that if officials at Citibank tried to confirm the assets’ existence, “they would in fact be contacting a telephone number assigned to Nemazee himself, and not any financial institution.”
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