Marigold Library System has become the victim of an impersonation scam due to a fraudulent job posting, which used the library system’s name and logo, on a workplace marketplace website.
Freelancers using the Upwork website applied for what they believed was a job with the Marigold Library System, but were ghosted when it came time to cash in on their work, and this has left actual Marigold employees fielding multiple emails and negative Google reviews.
“We discovered that someone created a company on Upwork impersonating Marigold Library system in an attempt to scam freelancers, and many people appear to have been scammed,” states a letter from Marigold Library.
Marigold Library System is a collaborative of 42 member municipalities across southern Alberta, which includes the Drumheller Public Library, and is a not-for-profit established to provide library services to rural and urban communities through collection material and resource sharing.
To help quell the number of emails staff are receiving, and in response to the negative reviews on Google, Marigold has posted a statement on its social media and website informing it “does not use services like Upwork or any other online hiring resource to recruit freelancers.”
It has also reported the scam to both Upwork and Google, as well as the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre and local RCMP. According to the correspondence letter, Upwork is now investigating the matter.
Member municipalities and public library branches have also been contacted preemptively, and the letter states the matter will also be brought up to regional library systems and the Canadian Urban Libraries council.
The Mail reached out to Marigold Library System and Strathmore RCMP for comment; Marigold declined to provide further comment at this time.
Strathmore RCMP Staff Sergeant Mark Wielgosz confirmed the detachment had received a complaint of the scam in early June. He shared this type of scam is fairly common and usually involves those who apply to the fraudulent position being asked to provide payment for a variety of administrative requirements, and are often asked to provide personal information such as banking information or social insurance numbers (SIN), which can put them at risk of identity theft.
S/Sgt Wielgosz says anyone suspicious of a job offer or posting should search the company directly on a verified search engine and reach out directly to the company to confirm the posting, contact a local police department for advice and report the situation, and check the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website.
By Lacie Nairn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Original Published on Jul 26, 2023