From the student who copies classmates’ homework to the person who lies about their taxes, cheating happens every day and by people of all ages. But before children discover how to cheat, they learn the art of lying. It is estimated that the average child begins to tell lies between the ages of two and three. By age six, children average one lie every hour and a half, and it only gets worse as we grow up. Adult men lie about six times a day and women lie an average of three times a day.
Lying and cheating go hand in hand. When you don’t get caught, you can gain an advantage over others. Children learn this at a young age and begin to cheat as early as elementary school. Cheating has always been an issue in middle school, high school, and college, but thanks to today’s technology it has become an increasingly difficult problem to stop. Sophisticated technology has allowed students to gather and share information in clever ways that are hard for teachers to detect. Smart phones have further fueled this problem, especially in the classroom. Students can cheat by text messaging answers to one another and taking photos of exams.
Cheating doesn’t only take place in schools; it also happens in the workplace. Cheating affects people in every industry, especially fields that are heavily motivated by money, such as sales, retail, marketing, real estate, and consulting. Fierce competition, declining profits, and a bad economy cause many companies and their employees to use dishonest tactics to get your business. Business owners can cheat customers out of money through false advertising, overcharging, withholding information, displacing blame, and many other deceitful business practices. Business owners have been known to cheat their own workers out of wages and benefits, and employees often cheat their employers out of money through embezzlement and fraud. The following graphic by Online Colleges explains the evolution of cheating and how deceit affects our day to day relationships.