Purchasing a degree is not considered ethical, as it is illegal to use in some states and can result in firings, according to NYTimes.com. There are concerns that unqualified people with these diplomas could be placed in positions where life and death decisions are made, such as courtrooms and hospitals. Additionally, fake diplomas may even be used in immigration fraud.
Paying for a fake diploma in and of itself is not considered a crime, but some states do consider using one to be a crime. It is tantamount to fraud. For instance, in Florida, people who use purchased diplomas to deceive an employer can get up to one year in jail or a $1,000 fine, according to Fox4Now.com.
Another problem with these degrees is that organizations may have to review every single case or decision the person with the fake diploma made. In 2007, it was discovered that British Criminologist Gene Morrison used a purchased diploma and other credentials for his resume, according to NYTimes.com. Ultimately, Morrison was jailed for a year by the court system and police had to review 700 cases that he had input on.
Paying for a diploma is not the same as going to an accredited university to get a degree. The companies that offer these diplomas often only give applicants a few basic questions to fill out before mailing a diploma after "students" pay anywhere from a few hundred to thousands of dollars for it.