Watch out for Fake GEDS

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Those working with dropouts who want to get their GEDS should be aware of a growing Web scam.

Companies have been selling fake GED credentials since the early 1970s, say officials at the American Council on Education (ACE), which manages General Educational Development (GED) certification. But ACE is warning the public about a growing number of Internet scams in which companies charge customers $50 to $500 to take a bogus GED exam that nets them a phony high-school diploma.

The GED is awarded to individuals who don’t complete the high-school coursework needed for graduation, but who can test in subjects like math and English at a level equivalent to that required for graduation. Test-takers are required to appear in person at official testing sites.

ACE “is deeply concerned with a recent increase in the number of websites purporting to offer GED testing online or through the mail,” Sylvia Robinson, executive director of the GED Testing Service for ACE, said in a prepared statement.

ACE does not make its GED certificates available online, said C.T. Tucker, ACE’s director of marketing.

“They’re luring people in by saying they have a free GED test that you can do at your convenience, but once you sign up, they say they only give out high school diplomas,” some of which have the letters “GED” printed on them, Tucker said. “GED” is a trademark of ACE, he said.

A list of official GED testing centers is available at

Contact: American Council on Education (202) 939-9300.