Construction scheme card fraud is an ongoing and serious issue for the industry, such fraud not only devalues the scheme but puts both employers and employees at risk, as fraudulent card holders will rarely have achieved or maintained the competence they claim.
The CITB work closely with the police and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to gather evidence to prosecute fraudulent behavior and bring criminals to account. They are also committed to preventing fraud and provide a range of tools and information to assist employers in identifying CSCS card fraud.
One such tool provided by the CITB is their online Card Checker – if it is a genuine card, you should be able to find it on the system. Additionally some android and windows smart phones will also allow you to read the card with the appropriate app further details are available from the CSCS website.
We would suggest that it is good practice for all employers to make use of these tools periodically and especially on recruitment of a new employee.
Identifying a Fraudulent Card
A number of security features are normally built into a construction skills certification scheme (CSCS) card.
A genuine CSCS card will have:
- The CSCS hologram in the top left-hand corner
- on moving the card slightly to an angle you will see the words ‘Construction Skill Certification Scheme’ in the reflective element
- A recent photo of the person on the right hand side of the card
- the photo should have been taken within the last five years and should be a good likeness of the person before you
- The card holder’s name printed below the CSCS hologram
- The card holder’s registration number printed below their name along with the card’s expiry date.
- the registration number should also be repeated on the back of the card
- The ‘HS&E Tested’ logo next to the ID photo
- this will be in a silver coloured box next to the ID photo or
- this will be in a gold coloured box next to the ID photo
- The card colour going right to the edge of the card
- some forgeries are known to have what appears to be a white edge to the front of the card
- Sharp and clear printing and colours – some forgeries have blurred or dull printing
- The correct spelling – some forgeries have spelling mistakes
To find out more about how to tell a genuine CSCS card from a fraudulent one, visit the CSCS website.
Action to Take if You Think Someone has a Fraudulent Card
If possible check the details of the card with the CITB online Card Checker – if it is a genuine card, you should be able to find it on the system.
If you suspect a worker of using a fraudulent card to work or enter a construction site:
- retain the card if possible
- make photocopies of front and back of the card
- record cardholder’s name and address
- ask the cardholder where the card was obtained from
- call the local police and report the matter
- refuse the worker access to the site (subject to company rules)
If it is a suspected fraudulent CSCS card:
- send copies of all evidence, marked “SUSPECTED FRAUDULENT CARD” with crime reference number given by the local police to:
The Building Centre
26 Store Street
- inform CITB by post, marking it for the attention of the Fraud Investigator, or email firstname.lastname@example.org making sure to include:
- a copy of all evidence
- the crime number given by the local police.
The CITB and CSCS will fully support any prosecution with technical and factual evidence.
Combating CSCS card fraud requires all aspects of the construction industry to remain vigilant: employers, contractors, sub-contractors, employees, certificating bodies and training providers.
As a training provider Goldcross recognises the importance of ensuring its delegates reach the minimum level of competence required to pass the courses they undertake (construction related or otherwise) and as an avid supporter of the CITB Site Safety Plus Scheme providing the following courses:
- Health and Safety Awareness (HSA),
- Site Supervisor Safety Training Scheme (SSSTS)
- Site Supervisor Safety Training Scheme Refresher (SSSTS-R)
- Site Management Safety Training Scheme (SMSTS)
- Site Management Safety Training Scheme Refresher (SMSTS-R)
we will always ensure that delegates reach the required standard before we support the allocation of any award/certificate/diploma.
As an employer you owe it to yourselves, your employees and the industry to ensure you carry out due diligence in order to ensure that the individuals working for you either directly or indirectly have the appropriate competence and certification.