Secret ShopperConsumerAffairs Unaccredited Brand
Initially, I received a text from LinkedIn to see if I wanted to be a part of a focus group, and since I received the text from a professional social website, I accepted. In approximately a week I receive a Priority Mail package from a person who has a profile from Washington PA who is apparently part of the TWBS Group based in Vacaville, CA. Within that package, there are two documents - a check for $2900.42 and a detailed set of instructions for a Secret Surveyor evaluation. I thought it was a little odd that a focus group was modified to a Secret Shopper, but at this point I still didn't doubt the legitimacy.
"The present package contains your first secret survey assignment, along with this letter is the funding for the assignment and survey. So, have fun, make money, and help us improve customer service on a Global level. Take note included in this package is the checklist with further required steps and the payment sent out for your highly appreciated service. The check included in this letter represents $2800 that covers the assignment bills, evaluation costs and your survey commission payment of $300".
The check amount was for $2900.42, which was inconsistent. The instructional document proceeded to ask that I confirm the receipt of the package to email@example.com. I also received a text message from 331-240-9086 stating the following "Congratulations (my first and last name). How you doing today? Remember you apply for Survey assignment 300$ on LinkedIn last week. You have been pick for the job. We like to inform you that your first assignment has been deliver to you. Hope you will read and update." The area code is from the Chicago area. In addition, I noticed afterwards, the following information on the check "This document has a colored background and microprinting. The reverse side includes an artificial watermark".
The bank was First Northern Bank of Vacaville CA. It started to feel strange. My assignment was to evaluate the nearest store selling Wal-Mart Gift Cards. I was to pick five Wal-Mart Gift Cards, go to the register, and add $500 to each card. I also needed to peel the silver scratch off area and not discard the cards and to send captured images of the card front and back after scratched. It is a scam. I almost cashed the check, when I realized that this was not a focus group, or a legitimate secret shopper assignment, but a scam.
I got contacted by this individual named Dirk ** with a cell phone number of **. I received a priority mail envelope with a letter for a Secret Shopper evaluation with a check from "The TBWS Group" in the amount of $3,550. The package was sent from Rhonda **. Their email is **. The individual wouldn't stop texting my cell phone asking if I completed the evaluation. This is a SCAM - please don't fall for it. Reply back to them that you know it is a scam and you are going to the police.
I just received a SMS text message that was in the form of an email asking me to click on a link to become a mystery shopper for Wal-Mart. It came from **. I googled his email address and it came up as a known hacker.
I received a text message from **, Community Research- Secret Shopper program on 10/13/17. Today, 10/17/17 I received a letter with a cashier's check. I'm so livid with these scammers! Thank goodness I looked up scams and phone numbers. Imagine if I was naive enough to do it? These scammers are out of control!
I was contacted by a Mr. Trip ** re: being chosen to complete the task of mystery shopper for Walmart. I received a check in the amount of $2850.70, in which I was to deposit in my account. I was then instructed to deduct my pay of $250, and then shop at the store spending no more than $50, and then I needed to transfer via Moneymart $1262.50 ea to two different people. I was not to alert the associates of my task, and after doing so I would be sent a survey form in which I was to evaluate the experience. I was very excited to be chosen to be involved, until I did some research online as to the legitimacy of the "assignment". I was glad I did so, as it seems a way to get a hold of your personal account info. There was even a case of an individual that was arrested after cashing on of their checks! I hope that anyone else who is contacted by this company has the forethought to check into it first. THIS IS A SCAM, PLEASE DON'T GET INVOLVED!!!
- 1,081,454 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
- We require contact information to ensure our reviewers are real.
- We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
- Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.
For more information about reviews on ConsumerAffairs.com please visit our FAQ.
I remember seeing something on Facebook about being a secret shopper. I clicked on it and went to sign up but I did not complete it, so I just forgot about it. On Tuesday or Wednesday I received a priority mail envelope from USPS. I opened it and there was a big check for $1925.42. And a letter with instructions to go to Walmart purchase something for $50, then you go to the money transfer station do a Walmart to Walmart money transfer for $1,550.00, there is a $25 charge which is included in the check. I really could use the extra $300 as was a compensation for my shopping. I sent an email to the address and the letter of instructions, told them my account was overdrawn at this time. He told me just to do a money transfer for $1,300, I asked what about the other 250 that he's supposed to be getting back, he said he would fix it in the next assignment that they send me.
I need to deposit the check in my account and send them a receipt of the deposit by email or text. I told him it usually takes 5 days for a check to clear, he said no the money will be available tomorrow if I deposited the check tonight. I am so glad that I Google Walmart secret shopper survey, that's when I found this website of all the complaints and it is the same scenario that I have encountered. I did not sign the back of the check, I will take the check the letter and the address label off of the priority envelope to my bank tomorrow. As the instructions have whom to transfer the money to, phone number and email address of the person giving the instructions.
I received an assignment from "Secret Shopper" with a forged USPS money order for $995.00. Was told to cash it and keep $200. Spend up to $20 at Walmart, and use a WM-2-WM money transfer to send the $795 balance to Doreen **. When I checked the USPS website to verify the M/O was good, it came back as a fake. Looks almost like a real one. But amount is printed twice, watermarks missing, and other small differences. I've contacted the FBI but am out of minutes on my cellphone. So I'll try to "LIE" and submit feedback that I've sent the balance on. Hopefully they will "Sit tight" and get caught? Love to put criminals in prison! So far only one to date, but wish me luck on more successes!
I don't know how they got our contact information but for the past 2 weeks they have been constantly harassing us through the phone every afternoon from 4-6 pm. We did not sign up for this service and we have continuously asked them to get us off of their call list. They keep calling back because they want us to give in. If the harassment keeps on continuing we will have to contact the authorities.
I never signed up for anything with Secret Shopper. I had an experience with them about 3 years ago so never trusted them. I didn't get scammed or anything by them but I called and found out that they were a fake so I knew not to try anything with them again. Somehow they got my email (I did sign up for an online website to help me find a job, so I guess that's where they got my info?). I had been getting weird random phone calls on my cell phone which when answered it would be like a bunch of people calling in and then someone started talking about making money... I always just hung up BUT...
Then 2 days ago I got a text message from a James ** stating to watch my mail because a package was coming from me. I immediately called the number but it just rang and rang and rang. I then texted him and asked who he was and I stated that I didn't know him. He immediately texted back stating that it was the mystery shopper. I texted him back and told him I didn't sign up for that, didn't want any part of it, told him to never contact me again. I then blocked the number.
I went to get my mail and inside was a manila envelope marked priority (Someone paid 6.45 to send it to me. It was from a **, EWCC Service LLC, 480 Mountain Shadows Rd, Hamilton, GA 31811-5947. No one I knew!!! Opened it up, first thing that hit me was a check for $2,750.00 made out to me from Wescom Credit Union in Pasadena, CA. Never heard of them. Looks pretty official, but no watermark. Cashier's check.
Also were 2 pages of information with the CUSTOMER SERVICE EVALUATION TOOL (CSET) at the top. It says it's from the Walmart Shopper program for which I applied. I was to immediately deposit their check into my bank account. I was to reply to an email confirming that I had received the package. They wanted me to give my name, amount on the check, my bank name and cell phone. I was told to purchase an iTunes gift card worth 100.00 at any Walmart. Take a picture of the scratched iTunes pin number. Deduct 300.00 for my trip, 100.00 for the Walmart shopping. Then do a second evaluation at 2 more Walmart areas and wire the funds using 10 minute transfer services. I was to get 1225 for each trip. They then gave addresses of 2 people that I was to give each 1200.00 to. Both people were in Georgia. They said that a moneygram is 25.00 for each transfer. A LOT of instructions!!!
I'm just giving the bare bones information. It was then signed by a **, 2408 Highway 11 Nw. Monroe, GA 30656. I KNEW better than to get involved with this... but I can easily see why people would think this might be legit. What a bunch of snakes!!! I will be reporting all of this to the BBB, Attorney General's office and then hand this over to my bank. It really makes me angry that they try to hurt people and rip them off using this method. I really want to know how they got my cell phone number and mailing address! It makes me never want to put any information about myself on the internet again. Bottom line... Do not ever think if some unknown person sends you "free money" that it's free!! IT'S NOT!!!
I first got an email from a David ** (school email - UAH) and he needed a PA (a personal assistant) to help him with his company. I gave him my number because I was wanting to make some extra money to help pay off tuition for school. Later I got a big check from him and he kept pestering me to cash it. I was pretty skeptical because almost no one sends a big fat check to you. Then he kept asking me to go put the check in the bank and then go to the store and shop for a laptop and some junk like that. Then when I found out he was a scam, I told him off and he tried to tell me otherwise that it was not a scam. Then I voided the check myself because it was garbage. I told him I was done and not to contact me again. Then he pitched a fit about how I didn't want to work for him and he threatened me. I never cashed the check because I'm not that stupid. It was in my spam mail.
I like so many others answered an offer to do secret shopping. I was sent a registered mail package with a $1400+ cashiers check. I was told to evaluate WalMart but only after depositing the check in my checking account. I felt very uneasy about this job, and emailed them and told them that I decline the job. I got a terse email reply saying it was required of me. I again emailed them saying that I was declining the job and I would not be cashing the check. Again I got a terse email saying the job was required. The final email I sent them indicated that my attorney has advised me to look for secret shopper jobs that don't involve money laundering. I have heard nothing else from them since. That right there confirms my suspicions. IF IT SEEMS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE, IT LIKELY IS.
I received a check telling me to deposit in my bank and then cash it and wire the funds to someone in Texas. The envelope came from Tyson ** in Philadelphia but the letter said to wire from Walmart to Jason ** in Galveston Texas but the check was supposedly drawn from David ** account. As a previous victim do not fall for this. You will end up paying thousands back.
Same story as some of the others. Getting checks in the mail and instructions to deposit them and keep $300 and put the rest in another account. One is on a Chase account. My go into Chase see if they can help file a case. Glad I'm not alone.
Everyone!!!!! If you receive a letter and a big fat check for mystery shopping, do not cash the check, or proceed with any assignment. This is a scam. I use to work for Citibank, in the anti-money laundering dept and this is exactly how the cartels and mules transfer and disguise stolen or bad money. Once you cash the check, they now have access to your account, therefore that is why people have stated they are in the whole by over $1000. If it's too good to be true, it probably is. I received the same letter and check today, and decided to do my research, just for kicks and grins because I knew it was fraud.
To make yourself feel better, always look up the bank name to see if it's a legit bank. Look up the person that emailed you or sent you a letter. You will see that in the letter they mention transferring, calling, depositing, getting a cashier's check and using a reputable retail company like Walmart as a way to get you to fall into their trap. It is nothing but a way to break down the funds into several different accounts to detour the Feds from finding them. Please spread the word and let's stop the criminals. I'm going to respond to them and let them know I have the Feds coming after them... I'm sure I won't get a response back.
They have no concept of the pressures and stress of what retailers go through. They assume they are highly important people rather than a just run of a mill person. Average. Unimportant. Simple dollar signs. Retailers already try their best under the great amount of stress they go through to try and make you happy and if you can't wrap your head around how hard it is, maybe you should stay home and make your own damn drink/food item.
I received a letter in the mail with a check for 3992.50. There are two things that I am suppose to do: 1. I was to shop at Walmart, Home Depot, Sears, Winners, and Best Buy. 2. Transfer money by Western Union for the amount of 3,162.50. Once It did this I was to fill out a form and send it by fax to 470-335-1804. It kept saying that I needed to talk to the Coordinator; which in itself is a big caution signal to me. I worked retail for many years and I know that companies are out there to do Mystery Shopping, but this one is sending up warning signs to me!
On the envelope it has a return address from: Sanford Bell and Associates, Inc in Montgomery, Al and on the check it has MSM Morton Scrap Metal, Inc which are both real businesses, but when contacting Consumer Survey Specialist it brought up a lot of complaints. All were very similar to mine and that made me very skeptical of going through with the assignment.
I had a friend forward me an email from "target," offering a job for secret shoppers. So I responded to the email and got texts as well as a USPS envelope in the mail. I went to my bank and then I called the Wood Forest National Bank and then found out it was a scam. Just like everyone has said, if it's too good to be true, then it is.
My boyfriend replied to an offer from secret shopper and received two assignments along with one Money Order from the post office, $990.89 and one for our bank, $1,443.00. Come to find out that this company is knowingly sending out false money orders and cheats. If it seems to good to be true, most of the time it is. We are very upset.
I also got this famous big USPS envelope. Sender was a mattress firm in OK. The letter inside was crumbled, no address or letter head - $1950 on the check, but this one was printed wrong. The white stripe where normally the account information is was on the top. The address to send the MoneyGram was in CA, the bank from HI. So it was very simply to recognize as fraud. I gave it to my banker. He'll sent to his fraud department. And I wrote a "nice" email to the address in the letter from my trash email account.
Received a USPS package with a Mystery Shoppers Inc. logo and a check made out to me for $1825.07. Was instructed to deposit check then purchase three OneVanilla prepaid cards and add at register $500 for each card from CVS, Walmart, Rite Aid, Walgreens, Family Dollar or Dollar General. My fee to keep was $300. Was instructed to email pics of cards to Phoenix, AZ address and hold onto to cards for further instructions. Information forwarded to Attorney General of Texas.
Rec'd cashier's check from Credit Union in San Diego for Mystery Shoppers assignment for $2920. Called the Credit Union and the first question was what color is check. I answered blue and rep tells me it is a fraud and I am the 3rd person this week that has called. What happens is you put check in your account and text a message to a number Mystery Shopper has given you on instruction sheet to find out what to do with remaining money. I did not text number because CU told me I would be accountable for money that comes out of my acct. I was to get $200 but wire or do something with the remaining $2720 which I will never know because I did not text them to find out assignment. I called Credit Union instead. So glad I did otherwise I would have been had. Hope this helps some dope like me who knows if it looks too good to be true, it isn't.
I just received a USPS envelope mailed to me in a large envelope. Once I opened the mail, I saw a check for $1950 which I was not expecting but it was for a mystery shopper for Western Union. It was giving me instructions to deposit that check with my bank, email ** (compulsorily)... Yeah I'm sorrily & advise him that I received their check so he'll make sure funds will in the account.
Offering me $200 + $150 for wire transfer fee through Western Union then mail $800 each to 2 strangers in Dayton, TX & Amarillo, TX. Looks too good to be true & checked this website(s) and sure thing!!! a SCAM alright. Thank God for your reviews people. I will not to go jail for anyone!!! I may not have a job but it's still worth being a good person!
Needless to say, I will frame this check as a token of ALMOST being a scam victim from the lowest scum of this earth!! It's so sad that people like those think that we are all stupid and ignorant. So sorrily ID10T!! Thank you for all your reviews. It's alarming that it exists but most of all, Thank God for technology to allow us to open our eyes from scums!!!
About a couple weeks ago I seen a ad on Instagram for a career in secret shoppers. I made a profile and a couple days later I get a text for a guy named Fred telling me to email him my info to get a job with secret shopping at Walmart. I was kinda skeptical like I always am so I decided to give him my PObox info instead. He instructed me that I was gonna receive a check in the mail for my services and I was going to do a transaction at one of those MoneyGrams inside of the store and rate their performance. Every night at weird hours he would text me to see if I received the check which I knew was unprofessional and something was up.
I explained to him thru email that I wasn't interested especially because of his unprofessionalism texting me at 3:00am. He changed the subject and continue to ask if I received the check. I finally checked in the PObox and I did get a package with a cashier's check for $1995.00 and a paper with directions. I knew it was too good to be true for someone to trust another person to actually send the check back. I live in New York and honestly I was just going to keep the whole check and not send anything back until I read someone was scammed just like this. The check is worthless and garbage. They wanted me to keep 250 dollars for my payment and send the rest to some guy in the Philippines. Hopefully no one gets scammed and actually sends the money because you will owe the bank back.
Secret Shopper for Walmart -- February 22, 2016, I received a priority mail. Enclosed was an instruction letter and money order for $984.20 that look real. The letter instructed me to fill in Corrin ** name in the address column along with their address and to fill in my name and address in the pay to column. The letter then instructed me to cash the money order at my bank and deduct $180.00 for my pay to complete the first task assignment. The task assignment was to go to a local Walmart store and appear as a customer (secret shopper). The next step is to purchase any item for my own use not to exceed over $20.00, then proceed to check out of the store. I am instructed to observe the cashier/attendant name and how they conducted themselves. I am also instructed to email the receipt/invoice number along with my observation about the cashier as I checked out of the store. (Pretty simple right?) umm... except the second part of the instruction.
The second part of this letter instruction is for me to wire the remaining of $785.00 minus a transfer charge of $19.20 through MoneyGram to their affiliate in Texas address to ** at 141 Blazing Star Dr. Georgetown TX 78633. I am instructed to make an observation of the cashier/attendant name, how long it took to get checkout, smartness of the attendant, report the receipt number and the 8 digit reference number, scan and email the exact amount of the transaction sent printed on the receipt. (This is a red flag.) **No one should never send funds through MoneyGram to any person they do not know, this transaction is not legitimate and strikes me as a fraud transaction.**
I had reported and filed this complaint to the Federal Trade Commission and alerted my bank just in case the money order returns back as a fake. It's a good thing I did not wired the money. If I had done so, I would have been out of pocket 984.20 plus shopping fees. If you are instructed to conducted this type of act, contact your local authority, bank and the Federal Trade Commission. This is another scam to get people hard earned dollars...
I signed up for an assignment with secretshopper.com to do a shop at a liquor store. I made the visit, purchased a product, and then wrote my review for secretshopper.com and uploaded a picture of my receipt. I know that it takes till nearly the end of the following month to receive payment, so I didn't worry about it for a while. But months passed and the day my check was supposed to be issued and mailed came and went. It's been over two months now since I was supposed to receive a check and have not received anything; nor have they bothered to respond to multiple emails sent (they also make it difficult to contact them and don't provide a name of any rep or employee). It was only a check for around $10, but I don't appreciate signing up to the website, doing a shop for them, filling out the online form, and then never hearing from them again. I always kind of thought secret shopping was a scam, but now I know it is. AVOID!!!
I signed up for Shadowshopper.com and checked it out. Most of the shops required you to sign up for a third party website but most of those seemed legit. I did a college admissions shop which I was paid $65 for but that, again, was through a third party website. A few days ago I get this text saying "This is David ** from Shadowshopper", advised me to email him at his Outlook email... A little odd but I did it. Just to see what was up. The first concerning thing was the amount of the shop. This guy says he is sending me a $3300 dollar check, I'm supposed to deposit this thing in my bank, go to Walmart, spend 50 bucks, then do a $3000 transfer to some guy in the UAE and keep $250 as payment. Enticing but fishy.
So as I'm emailing this guy back and forth with a growing sick feeling in my stomach, I start to notice, hey why is this guy using outlook and not david @ shawdowshopper.com or something... Then I noticed no official signature on the emails, typos, and he was just waaay too quick with his replies. I start asking questions. How am I supposed to do a transfer when it takes 3 days for a check to clear my account? How am I supposed to withdraw $3000 from my account in one day (my bank limits me to $1000) and WHY can't I just cash the check? It gets weirder and weirder.
So I consult Google aaand end up here. I don't know if I should send the check back or take it to the cops. Once I started asking questions David started getting pushy. When I sent him the link to this website and asked for some accreditation, anything to show me he is legit, he said "I understand how you feel, I do not indulge in scam." NOPE NOPE NOPE NOPE NOPE NOT HAPPENING!!! I'm so glad I decided to do some research. I was just sooo excited about some extra Christmas money and I almost WRECKED myself financially! Be super careful out there guys!!!
I applied for a job via CraigsList to become a 'Secret, or Mystery Shopper'. About a week later I started getting emails with instructions on what I would do as a secret shopper, and even a PDF form to fill out about the retailer I was going to evaluate. (This was intended for the local Apple Store.) Then I rec'd an email that had the amount I was going to receive via cashier's check for $2950.00, to purchase (3) i-phones. I was to deposit the check into my personal account, then proceed to the Apple Store to make the purchases and submit my review. Oh, I was also supposed to evaluate my bank in that process, which was sort of stupid.
Back to i-phones, any $ left over from original amount + taxes after I made purchase was to be my 'salary'. I smelled something odd about it all, and researched for scams like this, and found this website. One thing was the format of all of their communications (i.e., no letter head), the request to reply via text that I had received everything, status of depositing money, status of shopping, status of sending i-phones purchased, etc.
So, yesterday the check was delivered via USPS 2-day Priority. The cashier's check was made on a Chase Bank out of Ohio, actually looked pretty legit at 1st glance. But when I took it by local Chase branch, they confirmed in a split second that it was bogus form on bogus accounts. The branch manager suggested I play along with the scammers, saying I had deposited the money, made the purchases, and ask what was next. I got a text back saying that I was to Fed Ex the I-phones to their 'Evaluation Officer', who's located in Indiana.
I immediately filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, and the State of Oklahoma Atty General's Office, which is where I live. Then I replied to a couple of the secret shopper scammer emails and texts -- basically saying the gig was up, and to never contact me again. Then I blocked the numbers and email addresses. Still, I wonder if they could do anything more; I did not give out any important info, but I did submit a resume when I applied for the job, so they know that much. We shall see. But you know the saying: If it is too good to be true, it probably is. Good luck, be aware.
My life can be very displeasing especially when we loose the ones we love and cherish so much. My husband abandoned me and my 2 kids for 2 years he said he wanted new adventures. I asked what I had done wrong but he said nothing. He continued paying our bills but moved in with another woman. I was so frustrated and at times I will cry all night because I needed my husband by my side. All thanks to **, I was nearly loosing hope until I saw an article on how master James cast a love spell to make lovers come back.
"There is no harm in trying," I said to myself. I contacted him via email and after 24 hrs my story changed. Words will not be enough to appreciate what he has done for me. I have promised to share the testimony as long as I live because he brought back happiness and joy into my life. If you having any kind of problem in your relationship and you need your man back I RECOMMEND master James. Please do contact him directly on **.
I applied to be a secret shopper by emailing my information to firstname.lastname@example.org. I received a text that I should have received my first assignment a few weeks later. The first package I received had a postage due of $5.75. Since I did not know what it was, I did not sign or pay for it. I was reassured that there should be no postage due and another package would be sent. Received the 2nd package Saturday and was receiving emails and texts by Sunday asking if I received the check. Even though I replied to the email and number to text, that I had indeed received the package, it seemed I was being rushed to get the assignment done. Luckily I did my homework and checked this site and contacted the Campus USA Credit Union to check the validation of the check. I was informed it was not valid. Please contact the institution the check was drawn on before heading to your bank or credit union. It'll save you time and money.
I decided to check out a secret shopper e-mail sent to me by someone named Nick **. They in turn sent me a letter with instructions and a check for $2,750.90. The check looked funny to me so I called the bank on which it was written. Georgia Surveyors Exchange Company. I talked to a nice lady who informed me that the check was fraudulent and the company, The Premier Mystery Shopping Company, had their account closed 2 weeks prior. She also said that Surveyors was not a bank and did not issue checks to individuals. She further said that they had checks missing and suspected they were being used for fraudulent purposes and were in the process of stopping payment on said checks.
Here's what the letter I received from the Secret Shopper company said, so beware! "Deposit the check in my bank, evaluate service at my bank, evaluate service at Wal-mart, and send a Moneygram to someone named Lynn ** in Madison Wisconsin" - Moneygrams require cash!! So I was to subtract the $300 from the check and send the rest. Can you imagine the trouble I would have been in? I am a retiree with a small income. Oh, I sent an e-mail to Nick ** and the e-mail was no good. The phone number, which I did not try, is **. I did report this to the Attorney General's office in Georgia as that was where the check was issued.
Secret Shopper Company Information
- Company Name:
- Secret Shopper