Fake degree scammers back in UAE business with a new twist

Published:  18 Jan at 6 PM
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Tagged: USA, South Africa, Dubai, UAE
A Pakistani online purveyor of fake university degrees is now back in business with a new scam.

Axact, a Pakistani fake degree company boss whose tentacles reached all over the world and made millions from selling degrees from non-existent universities is now back in business. Boss of the Karachi-based software firm Shoaib Shaikh was arrested and jailed early last year along with 14 of his executives and his company was closed down. The UAE had been a rich source of the cash for fake degrees scam, as were the USA and several Southeast Asian countries, with the firm in operation for around 10 years.

Those applying for the fake degrees weren’t in the main aware that the 350 or more universities listed were as fake as the degrees themselves. The company is now up and running again, with a new twist in parting expats from their hard-earned cash. It seems all the contact details of the massive number of degree applicants were stored, with Axact agents now calling former UAE customers and introducing themselves as Dubai police officers.

The fake police are demanding $5,000 or more in ‘degree legalisation’ fees, and threatening to report those who don’t pay up. One South African expat working in Dubai who’d paid thousands of dollars for his fake degree was shocked to receive a threatening call from a ‘police officer’. He called back on the number given on his cellphone and was answered by a genuine Dubai Police officer, after which the expat ended the call.

The scammer’s number was 04-6-09-9999, the correct number for Dubai police which had been imported via caller ID spoofing software. According to a former Axact staffer, the company used trained call centre agents and the present scam isn’t confined to the UAE.
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