A woman was sexually assaulted at her North York home after answering an online job posting on Kijiji.
The 21-year-old woman applied for a job at Corerite Salvage Logistics through the website and agreed to meet a representative of the company at a local coffee shop on Friday, according to a Toronto Police news release.
The posting was fake, however, and a man showed up at the woman’s home, near Finch Avenue West and Sentinel Road, with another woman. He allegedly began a sexually inappropriate conversation and then sexually assaulted the woman.
Police believe there may be other victims.
“This person provided a phone number and hopefully we’ll track him down,” Detective Wayne Bates said.
It’s uncommon for people to be attacked through online job ads, he said. “It’s not something that’s frequent. This is probably the only one that I’ve heard of personally.”
Still, he said people responding to online job postings can take steps to ensure the company they’re applying to is legitimate, such as meeting in a public place, not releasing their personal information and finding out as much information as possible about where they’re applying. If the company’s address and phone number are available elsewhere online, that can indicate whether it actually exists.
“Just try to verify the information in the ad to check if it’s legitimate,” Det. Bates said. “That would go a long way to protect them.”
Kijiji lists many of the same tips on its website and advises against jobs that sound too good to be true.
Those tips aren’t foolproof, however, and when attacks do happen, police have to find ways to find the perpetrator.
“There’s always an electronic trail for everything,” Det. Bates said.