Dr. Mehrdad Jalalian. Academic Journalism, Publication Ethics

Egyptian Professor from Saudi arabia, shares his experience of publishing in South African hijacked journal Bothalia

I had a busy week on hijacked journal news as tens of researchers from all around the world updated me with their experience of publishing in hijacked journals.

On June.27.2014, the Egyptian Professor "Prof. Dr. [Redacted]", from " Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Research, Saudi Arabia",  emailed me about his experience of publishing in hijacked journal Bothalia:



What we can do, we already submit some paper and we pay also ???????????????????  Journal Bothalia, from South Africa is hijacked by cyber criminals


My response:

Dear Prof. Dr. [Redacted],

Thank you so much for contacting me regarding the important issue of hijacked journals.

I already published the news on Hijacked journal Bothalia on my website, and I am sorry that you published your article in the fake website not the authentic website. Please click here to read the story of hijacked journal Bothalia.

I announced both the counterfeit websites and the authentic website of the hijacked journals both in my official website and the hijacked Journal List 2014, first edition, June12.2014. 


Regarding your own case of experience with Bothaia journal, I can say the followings:

1. It is not your fault. Thousands of distinguished researchers, Ph.D. scholars, lecturers and professors in the world have already experienced similar cases.

2. I think (but not 100% sure) you can publish those articles in the real journals somewhere else, because, actually, they have not been published by a journal (A real journal) before, but some of cyber-criminals stole your articles in that way and published it in their fake websites. However, I am going to contact the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) on your specific case to ask them some standard procedure about this specific case as it is not only your own case. I will announce any update from COPE, regarding this matter, on my website, facebook, and twitter.

3. If you or your colleagues know any new suspicious journal that is not presented in my list of hijacked journals, please tell me about the suspected journal and its website and i will do a full examination on it to find out whether the journal is real or hijacked.


Regarding the methods on how to avoid the hijacked journals, I attached three PDF full-text into this email (You can also download them from my website at http://www.MehrdadJalalian.com). You can also click on the title of each of the three articles below, to enter the Researchgate and download their PDF:

1. Hijacked journal list (first edition) 

2. How to avoid Hijacked Journals

3. Bogus Impact factors and fake metrics

The first file, that you may already have it from my site, listed the fake journals that I found till June.12.2014. I have more fake journals that will be added to this list in second edition in July 2014, So, please like my Facebook page or Follow me in Twitter or in Researchgate so that you will be informed when I publish the second edition.

The second file, presents some practical ideas on how to avoid the hijacked journals. This file is published by Walailak Journal of Science and technology in Thailand, and have been shared thousands of times in the academia as it is currently the only reference for identifying the hijacked journals.

The third file, is my short article on Bogus and fake impact factors, that is another scam in the field of academic publishing.

I hope all of the attached files are useful for you. Please share the three attached files  with other scholars, PhD students, lecturers and also it is a good idea that the library of your university share this file in their online portal, as many other university libraries in the world did the same to announce this new scam and protect their researchers and lecturers. Please also forward a copy of those articles to the deputy dean of research and education in your university and any other universities you know.

I am available for delivering a free workshop in your university on hijacked journals, publication ethics, and publishing in high quality journals and methods of differentiating between fake and legitimate journals, upon your request. 

Warmest regards,

Mehrdad Jalalian



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