Judy Sigler got an email telling her she’d been chosen to be a mystery shopper. Shortly after, she got a check in the mail for nearly $2,000. The person who sent it asked her to cash the check and send back $1500.
“This just came into my email and I thought well it would be worth it if it really is legitimate,” says Sigler.
She deposited the check, but then her husband stopped her.
“Then I talked to my husband and I said, we need to find out where you do a moneygram. And he looked at the letter and he immediately said, this is a scam!”
There are legitimate mystery shopper jobs out there but you must look for the warning signs.
“You never pay to be a mystery shopper, you know, they’re supposed to pay you to be a mystery shopper,” says Sgt. Joe Mahoney.Sgt.
Joe Mahoney with the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office says be wary of anyone asking you to send money back and especially be wary if you were contacted out of the blue. And cashing that check they send you could get you in big trouble.
“You’re going to be out that money. Typically, the bank is not going to forgive you that debt because you endorsed that check, presented it to them and signed it and cashed it already,” says Mahoney.
“Well I feel badly and I’m just hoping nobody else tries to do this cause, you know, it was almost a $2,000 check,” says Sigler.
If you are looking to be a mystery shopper, research legitimate positions online, read the reviews for the companies and dig deep-some of the more positive reviews may have been paid for by that company.