Amid the pandemic, a test that has traditionally been in-class is now planned to be held as follows:
The examiner starts a Zoom conference.
The students join the conference from their homes, turning their webcams and microphones on.
The examiner sends the students a link to a Google form. The form comprises of test tasks and questions and is to be filled out with answers.
The students open the form and fill it out, keeping their webcams and microphones on. The examiner and his assistants watch the students via Zoom in an attempt to ensure than no cheating takes place. The students are not allowed to use any books or materials or get help from other people. A warning has been issued that if any kind of cheating is noticed, the cheater will face dire consequences. The entire session will be video recorded by the examiner.
The students submit the form, and that's it. The form will be closed at the end of the test.
It appears to me that it's very easy to get away with cheating on the test. A student can simply give the link to a friend and ask him or her to secretly fill out the form and submit it on behalf of the student. Alternatively, a student can ask a friend to sit nearby, just outside the camera's field of view, and help pass the test. Also, a student can easily cheat by using Internet resources, but this way of cheating will not be very helpful for this particular test, so my main concern is about the easiness of getting help from others.
I wouldn't even consider cheating, and I wouldn't care whether others cheated, but the grading system for this test is relative, and the test is important. The purpose of the test is to measure how good the students are relative to each other, and the results will be used to divide the students into small groups so that each group comprises of students of approximately the same level of knowledge. Then each group will be taught in accordance with the abilities of its students. The test won't count towards my final grade, but I want to end up being in a group of good students, and I don't want to end up being behind a heap of students who will simply elect to cheat, although I have no idea as to how many actually will.
Knowledge-wise, I think I am better than an overwhelming majority of the students who are to sit the test, so my first instinct was to openly raise my concerns in an attempt to change the way the test is conducted, but I'm afraid I will achieve nothing but a reputation of a student who openly questions the integrity of fellow students. Knowing the examiner personally, I'm afraid he will strongly dislike my suggestion that he make extra effort to organize the test in a different way (e.g., by separately interviewing each student). Moreover, it well may be not even in his power to change the procedure. I talked to a couple of coursemates, and they were not enthusiastic to personally participate in any action about how the test is conducted.
What would you advise me to do?
Should I cheat? A senior friend of mine encourages me to accept his help with the test. He is prepared to fill out the form and submit it on my behalf or, if I wish, to sit nearby and give hints. He doesn't want me to fall victim of cheating by others. I'm weighing ethical factors and also trying to figure out whether there's any chance I might accidentally get caught.
What else could I do to address this?
I would be grateful for advice and, in particular, for pointing out anything I may be overlooking in this situation.
UPDATE: I'd like to explain why it is important to end up in a good group. In a better group, you get a better instructor, a better and more stimulating environment, and an opportunity to make social connections with better students. The practice here is that best groups get best instructors. Whom would you give the best English teacher - a group of lazy students or a group of students highly passionate about the English language? And the environment does matter. If you are in a group of good students, you will invariably become like them. Students take this test very seriously, and I do expect that some will cheat. And I don't want my place in a good group to be stolen by a cheater.