BBB: Mystery Shopper Job A Scam

A job that sounds too good to be true--just might be a scam.

The Better Business Bureau has sent out a warning about a fraudulent company advertising positions as "mystery shoppers."

The company typically mails fraudulent checks to unsuspecting consumers, with a letter explaining that they have been given money by this company to shop at various stores as a mystery shopper, or what the company calls a "consumer service evaluator."

But according to the BBB, this company, LS Management out of Tennessee, is just tricking consumers into spending money they don't have.

One Springs woman is all-too-familiar with the scam.

Mary Moye was surprised to find a check in her name for $1,922.75 in her mailbox.

"Almost $2,000...I mean, I could use that," Moye said. She immediately thought of ways to spend the money.

"At first I thought it was real, then I realized no, it's too good to be true...and it was," Moye said.

The check and letter she had received were from LS Management.

"I tried looking up the address that's on the letter. And I couldn't get anything. Then my friend looked it up under scams, and everything came out,” Moye said.

Moye wants to help get the word out, to make sure no one falls victim to the scheme, as she nearly did.

"If it looks too good to be real--it is," she said.

Below is the text from the BBB release:

It’s a traditional scam where the company – in this case LS Management – sends the consumer a counterfeit check and asks them to deposit it into their bank account, wait for the funds to clear and become available, and then use that money to buy goods at various retail establishments. It sounds like a dream come true to the person looking to earn extra money.

Here’s the catch: to get the actual assignment, the consumer is asked to go to a website and wire money to purchase training materials, send excess funds back to the original issuers of the check or wire money to various third parties. Consumers do this because they believe the check is legitimate. However, it can take banks weeks to actually collect the money from the issuer of the check and in these types of scams, the check is fraudulent. The result: the consumer withdraws and wires money they don’t actually have in their account. Instead of making money, the consumer is overdrawn and has spent money they don’t have.