This post was originally published on December 6, 2018. It has been updated in light of the college admissions scandal that ensnared dozens of wealthy parents and various prestigious universities.
Moe’s Coursework Completion Services makes as much as $21,000 per month writing papers for students at various education levels, according to an exclusive interview with the owner of the academic fraud company.
The startup is a “paper mill,” meaning that students pay it to do coursework and term papers. Moe told Yahoo Finance that hundreds of students have used the service, which has been running since January 2017 and advertises publicly on Facebook.
How a paper mill works
Most of the students requesting paper mill services are undergraduates, but some are in high school or pursuing a Master’s degree or Ph.D.
“I have a math guy who does math, a nursing guy who does nursing, a writing guy who does writing,” Moe says when asked about his five part-time employees.
Moe began as a tutor making $75 a day. Now, he estimates he makes between $600-$700 a day and about $15,000 a month (or approximately $180,000 a year). In the video above, Moe claims that his paper mill made $21,000 in October 2018.
Moe explained his process, stating that he charges about $20-per-page on average, though the rate is ultimately based on how much time he thinks the assignment would take to complete. Students reach out to him about an assignment. Moe negotiates a price and a timeline. He or one of his employees complete the work and email it back to the student. Students often come back with more assignments (and money).
Moe estimates his paper mill handles about 10 papers per day. He admitted that his service abets cheating but argued that the students “learn the things they need to learn and everything that I do is something that I don’t even need to read through it or think through it. Everything is in Google. Everything is there.”
Asked whether or not he’s ever felt remorse for his work, Moe responded: “I don’t know. I’ve never thought about it. Been too busy to think about it.” Moe noted that his wife and his aunt don’t like his lucrative paper mill.
‘People are always going to find a way to cheat’
Despite that, no one has been caught so far using his paper mill services and Moe claimed that it is because “professors do not care.”
“They don’t even mind that much,” he said. “They are lazy. At the end of the day, people are always going to find a way to cheat. No matter what the situation is, no matter what school you go to, students are always finding ways to get through the system.”
Yahoo Finance reached out to three New York-based universities to ask how they combat academic fraud, like the students who use Moe’s business, but each said it did not have time to comment on the issue.