Mystery Shopping Scams
The Real Deal!

Mystery shopping scams are becoming a big problem for the victim who is only trying to make a few extra bucks to help with their income.

mystery shopping scams girls shopping

Your state government is Not going to send you a $2,500 check from a state Department of Labor and Workforce Development agency.

  • These checks look like a real unemployment benefits check.

They even bear the official bank routing number used by that agency.

  • Even with a letter that accompanies these checks, there are no state-funded “mystery shopper” programs at your local Wal-Mart or Sears or to wire thousands of dollars to London to evaluate the service of Western Union.

Unfortunately, these checks have been sent all over the United States.

I know of people from Illinois and California that have complained of receiving this type of thing.

  • The latest bait in this mystery shopping scam promises you can make such easy money.

All you have to do is visit local restaurants, stores and then evaluate services and prices.

  • The start of this scam is when a check arrives in your mailbox. Its official looking and claims to be from government agencies.
  • You will be instructed to immediately deposit the check in your bank account.

Then spend a portion of the money at a particular business, keep some for your “work” and wire transfer the majority of it elsewhere.

Typically this will be overseas (appraising service at Western Union or Money Gram is part of your assignment, you’re told).

  • The problem is the check is counterfeit, which will probably take your bank weeks to find out.

No money is deposited into your account, and you end up being liable for everything you spent at the stores, and for the amount you wired overseas to the scammers, of course.

  • At least 10 people tried to deposit bogus Tennessee unemployment checks.

Each week, on an average, the department sends out about 150,000 unemployment checks.

  • Scammers are using a variation of this scam and sending checks supposedly issued by the State of Maryland for almost $5000.

The problem with this is, the checks actually bear signatures of the state’s comptroller and treasurer that look real.

  • This lends an enormous amount of credibility in making people feel secure that the checks they are getting are the “real deal” from the state.
  • It ends up the checks were really sent by a group that used con artist scams from Canada.

There are legitimate mystery shopping opportunities.

My niece found a reputable company online and did this for about a year and always got paid what was due her.

Go to identity theft scams to learn about all the scams making the rounds today.

Here's What To Look For
In Legitimate Companies:

  • The Company will not pay upfront.
  • The shopper will get paid after the completion of the assignment.
  • Mystery Shopping Providers Association has 300 member companies that hire shoppers for millions of undercover visits each year.

You might want to check out this company.

  • Usual payments are $8 to $20 dollars per shop.
  • There are No instructions to complete wire transfers overseas where the money would be beyond the jurisdiction of United States law enforcement and likely never be recovered.

These mystery shopping scams are one of the biggest scams to hit in this proportion in a long time, and it looks like there is no end in site at this point and time. This is also a perfect opportunity for identity theft.

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