New Zealand is seeing a surge in the issue of fraudulent eVisas in recent times. The Immigration New Zealand (INZ) reported this surge ever since it changed its system in July last year.
The INZ stopped including physical visa labels inside passports and opted for an eVisa. But this document is easy to manipulate. In the eVisa process, all applicants are sent an e-mail with details of their visa.
With the change to eVisas, there was an increase in the number of doctored or fake eVisa letters. This reason has made the INZ consider changes in the system.
Under the new system visa applicants get an email with an attachment that has details of the applicant’s immigration status. INZ says that the problem with eVisas is that forgery is easy with them. It is considering changing the system.
Since the time eVisas were introduced in July 2018, there has been a spike in the number of fraudulent cases. It was 52 last year. It stood at 33 till July this year.
These fake visas were picked up at airports overseas, INZ says it has systems in place to identify such visas. The eVisa is a support document, while the actual visa is electronically saved by Immigration New Zealand. So, any alteration in the eVisa letter or a fake eVisa can be easily identified if it does not match the INZ’s records and necessary action can be taken against these fake visa holders. But INZ feels more curbs should be placed on circulating such visas.
It is easy to duplicate the eVisa by changing the dates and other information. There are fake eVisas being used even within New Zealand to cheat foreign workers.
The New Zealand government wants to solve the issue immediately before it affects the reputation of the INZ.
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