The Delegation of the European Union (EU) in Algeria warned on Wednesday of an "alarming" increase in fraudulent documents when applying for Schengen visas, often presented by intermediaries and even without the applicant's knowledge.
The European representation warned that the use of unofficial providers, who offer appointment and dossier preparation services, poses a "high risk" of "fraudulent or falsified" documents being attached, which will lead to the visa being refused.
The presence of fraudulent documents "seriously undermines the bond of trust" between applicants and the consulate "which inevitably has lasting consequences with regard to the applications of the person concerned", the EU delegation warned in a statement.
It called on Algerian applicants to "be extremely vigilant in this context of increasing fraud".
Member states' consulates have also drawn attention to the importance of ensuring the authenticity of supporting documents in support of the application they submit.
"Schengen Member States work together to ensure a coordinated visa application process that is both fair and transparent, while helping to ensure the security of their borders," the representation said in the note.