With Christmas being closer than what we want to admit, many people are looking for extra money to pay for those gifts. Entering on the scene --- mystery shopping scams.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has some good advice on the subject.
If you are on a website asking you to pay a fee for information about a certification program for mystery shoppers, a director of mystery shopping companies, or a guarantee of a mystery shopping job, abandon the website immediately.
It is unnecessary to pay to become a mystery shopper. The FTC says the shopping certification offered in advertising or unsolicited emails is almost always worthless. You can obtain a list of companies that hire mystery shoppers for free. Go on the Internet and look for legitimate mystery shopper jobs.
According to FTC, another tactic involves “evaluating” a money transfer service. A check is sent to you. You are told to mystery shop the company, such as Western Union. You are told to cash the check and then wire the money to a third party. It is difficult to detect a fraudulent check immediately; it can take a few weeks. Guess who is held responsible for the money you wired? You are even though you were given a bad check. We as individuals are responsible for the checks we deposit.
Your BBB cautions you that if you receive any mystery shopping offer that arrives unsolicited or involves wiring money, consider it a red flag and do not respond. As always, if in doubt, check with your BBB.