Just the other morning, I received another text on my phone, offering me the job of mystery shopper. I didn't ask for the information to be sent as i have a regular job, so this tells me it is another scam.
There are real companies who hire people mystery shoppers but they do not send unsolicited emails or texts looking for people.
These scams work in several different ways. One way is to create a web site where you have to pay money to access it in order to find out more about the job, a directory of the companies, and the certifications that are required. Of course the jobs require you pay more to obtain their certification which is worthless. Lists of legitimate companies are available for free on the internet.
A second way is that you are hired to evaluate a local money transfer service. The idea is that you are sent a check which you deposit into your account. Of course the check is for more than you need, so you are to keep a fee, take the rest and wire it to a third party. By the time you find out the check is fake, it is too late.
Although the bank gives you access to the monies, it can take up to several weeks for the lack of funds to become known. Unfortunately, the person who has to make sure the bank gets its money is the one who deposited it. This means you could be out a couple of thousand. This is a variation of the fake check scam, similar to the car wrap scheme.
Ways to tell its a scam:
1. The email is via gmail or AOL.
2. If its a text, the phone number is not a normal one. The phone number on this text showed up as 141-020-0500 which has been identified as a scam phone number.
3. You are offered good pay for doing very little.
4. They tell you to deposit a check, take a small amount out before wiring it to someone.
5. The 'employers' set a deadline of say two days from receiving the check to deposit it, withdraw the money, and sending it on. There is pressure to do it in a very short time because they want to get it done before the bank discovers the check is fake.
In the past scammers used mail, then moved to e-mail before heading off to texting. Be suspicious of any offer which sounds too good to be true. I had someone receive the car wrap text and asked me about it. I promptly checked the internet for more info to verify it was a scam. Thankfully, the person listened to me and did not follow through.
Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.