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Company Statement in Response to Candidate Cheating at Pearson Professional Center (PPC) in India

Chandigarh, India (Oct. 15, 2019) — As part of our standard operating procedures and routine security checks, in September 2019 we initiated an internal investigation after certain triggers surfaced indicating potential fraud for the PTE Academic exam at our test center in Chandigarh, India. The investigation confirmed some candidates and a Pearson VUE test center manager (TCM) were involved in prohibited and illegal activity.

 

In addition, we found evidence of these candidates attempting to defraud immigration authorities by misusing the marks obtained by proxy testing. We promptly took legal action by filing a First Information Report (FIR) with local police on 7 October 2019.

 

Our investigation concluded that the test center manager was colluding with a number of candidates in enabling proxy testing of the PTE Academic exam. Upon confirmation of the activities, the TCM’s contract was terminated and fraudulent candidates' scores were revoked, and/or reported in the FIR.

 

A core value of our business is to operate with the utmost integrity across all of our activities, including our owned and operated test centers. We investigate all allegations, take appropriate action quickly, and when warranted, prosecute all involved to the fullest extent possible.

 

We have a zero-tolerance policy around cheating or fraud. We will continue to employ industry leading protective efforts and take immediate action on all suspected incidents involving proxy testing or any other fraudulent activities across our global test center network.

 

Every year, we successfully deliver more than 15 million high stakes exams, in more than 20,000 test centers in over 120 countries. For all testing companies, attempted proxy testing is an unfortunate and common occurrence. We routinely review and evaluate our policies around security and attempted fraudulent activities to combat the increasingly sophisticated measures that people will undertake to defraud high-stakes exam programs.

 

Operating with transparency is a core tenant for our entire organization, as is protecting our clients’ exams and programs globally.