Home > Internet Scams > Cybercheating

Cybercheating

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 7 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Cybercheating Cheating Internet

According to experts, more than 30 per cent of work by university students in some disciplines isn't the work of the students. As coursework becomes more important for grades at GCSE, A-level and university, the amount of cyber cheating is increasing.

How It Works

There are two types of cheating. One involves buying pre-written papers, usually from an Internet site. The purchaser pays the site, picking a paper from a list, and once payment has been received it's sent to them via e-mail to customise and use.

The more insidious kind is contract cheating. With this papers are written to order, sometimes even in the style of the student. Simply type appropriate key words into a search engine and you'll find sites. Many offer help with software and web design, but a little searching will reveal the hidden depths where cyber cheating happens. There are large reservoirs of foreign, English-speaking students from Eastern Europe and Asia ready to bid on these assignments. Although they're often university graduates, the amount they can make for writing these papers - often less than £20 - is far more than they can make in a day at home, if they can even find work.

How To Detect The Scam

With pre-written papers, detection can be quite easy. The paper itself might not conform to the essay question being asked, for example. And there are lists of sites offering pre-written papers, as well as the papers they offer, making them fairly easy to spot.

Contract cheating is much harder to detect. The papers are written to order, so they fully address the question. All too often the English used is of a very high standard. Given that those marking often don't know the students, it's hard for examiners to detect that the work isn't that of a particular student. Also, there's anonymity on the site (user names are adopted), so tracing each transaction becomes harder. In short, unless the examiner knows the student, the chances of being detected are virtually nil (assuming the student checks the paper for errors). Many of these papers can be bought very cheaply. The recommended prices, in U.S. dollars, are $5,000 for large projects, $500 for medium ones, and $100 for most papers. The writers, called "coders," will bid for each project, often offering to undercut each other, in some cases going down to $20 (about £11).

Beating The Scam

There are a number of proposals that might stop the effectiveness of cyber cheating. Lists of pre-written papers will end that plagiarism. For contract cheating there are several ideas.

Oral exams to check the depth of knowledge would offer one way. Another would be to have papers marked by teachers who know the students and can assess whether they could have written their papers.

The other alternative, although not likely to happen, is to make courses exam-based, although inevitably course work would have to be a part of the final grade.

The simple fact is that the Internet has increased the opportunity for students to cheat with relative impunity - and at a low price. In the long-term that's going to affect the level of education; it's no longer necessary to work hard when an essay can be purchased simply and easily online. Eliminating that, and changing the mindset of students, is something that can't be accomplished easily.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Angry666
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Just had a call. . I asked for his name. Location ID and what department. . He hung up. . 0114 number. Reported to sky. But they ain't interested.…
    19 July 2019
  • John
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Just had call from and ethnic man named Joseph. Refund on my Sky account asking DOB gave completely wrong one he took it. Then asked for expiry date on…
    25 June 2019
  • Cadbury
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Call from " sky". My breakdown ! First clue GOOD AFTERNOON It was 11 am Cover is ending. Buy now £150 for two years. Cannot pay direct debit. But one…
    18 June 2019
  • jacques73
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Just had a call from a person named Kelly who said she was from Sky maintenance and that my cover was about to expire. Said they were doing a deal on…
    30 May 2019
  • Norbs
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Call from ‘Sky tv’, we will change your box because we have had lots of complaints about it. Security check - what is your date of birth? OK because you…
    23 May 2019
  • Dusty
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Call from 01254 786422 stating calling from sky to say they had been having difficulties with sky boxes and they were updating a they would send out a…
    14 April 2019
  • Doccon
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Just had a Man claiming to be from Sky telling me I was about to receive a new sky box it would arrive Staurday as SKY had received many compliants…
    10 April 2019
  • Ray
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Just had Indian lady claiming to be from Sky telling me I was about to receive a new sky box....I was asked my d.o.b and sort code(for verification) I…
    16 March 2019
  • Cols
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Had a phone call from "Sky Protect" today offering a huge discount on Sky equipment insurance. "Paul" wanted my card numbers. I refused to give them,…
    4 February 2019
  • Oggy
    Re: Sky TV Scam
    Received a phone call from Indian lady called 'Lara" at 8:45am purporting to be from Sky. I have a refund due of £202 it seems but first can I confirm…
    10 October 2018