Fake job posting for Winnipeg coffee shop yields dozens of applicants, owner says

A Winnipeg coffee shop owner says she had to turn down dozens of applicants who were interested in an online job posting — one she didn’t create.

Janis Urniezius, owner of Park Line Coffee, said a part-time position for a barista and cashier at her shop appeared on the job search website indeed.com, but she wasn’t aware of it until prospective applicants started contacting her.

“I was confused,” she said. “At first I thought maybe it was a trick.”

Urniezius said many of the job seekers had either called her, showed up to drop off a resume in person, or had already been in touch with someone from the mystery posting.

“A lot of them were like, ‘What do you mean it’s fake?’” she said.

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) said fake job postings continue to be reported.

“Canadians need to recognize that fraudsters are creating fake job offers and trolling online employment sites in efforts to recruit potential victims,” said Jeff Thomson, a senior RCMP intelligence analyst for the CAFC.

Between January and August of 2019, the CAFC received 1,251 reports from Canadians of jobs scams. Of those reports, 452 are classified as victims with a total reported loss of $1.5 million.

“The frauds reported vary from mystery shoppers scam, financial agent scams and re-shipping scams,” Thompson said.

“Depending on the level of personal information provided, you may also be a victim of ID theft.

Thomson recommends never responding to an unsolicited text or email, contacting your bank if you receive a cheque or funds deposited to your account in response to a job, and not giving out personal information.

He said it’s also important to report any cases of fraud to your local police.

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