Scam Alert: Mother of two gets caught up in million dollar mystery shopper scam

Posted at 7:46 PM, Oct 30, 2014
and last updated 2014-10-30 19:46:05-04

Postal inspectors say a letter and check are key pieces of evidence in a million dollar mystery shopper scam.

In this case, a mother of two trying to make extra money found herself caught directly in the middle.

“Online she saw a job for a mystery shopper, she filled out the online application,” says David Oakley, US Postal Inspector.

And then she was hired. Her job was to stamp and mail out envelopes.

“If you`re a mystery shopper but you never actually shop, that should be a red flag for that person,” says Oakley.

Investigators found a check for almost $2,800 and a letter with instructions.

“Deposit the check, convert it into cash, keep some for themselves, then wire the remainder of the money to an overseas location or another person,” says Oakley.

But recipients who followed these instructions quickly learned they had been duped. The check bounced and they were on the hook for the money.

“Wire the remainder of the money to another person—this is a telltale sign this isn`t a legitimate job,” says Oakley.

Inspectors caught up with the victim and informed her she was being used as a pawn in an illegal scheme. She quickly quit.

“Be very careful if you are looking online for jobs. Research the company online. Do your homework before you say 'yes' to any job.

Postal inspectors say the 'potential' losses in this case totaled more than two million dollars.