Saturday, October 9, 2010

GLOBAL TEST MARKET... Mystery Shopper - Is this for REAL? Ahh... NO!

So, you received a check in the mail (The famous Mystery Shopper Job - I did, today as a matter of fact for $3420.00) and you want to take that check to your bank and cash it.  I wouldn't do that if I were you.  Because if you cash it, you could be found guilty of passing a counterfeit check, money laundering or worse.  I'm talking like federal prison!
Trust me when I tell you that the check is no good, even though it appears to be a legitimate cashier’s check or bank check. It's another scam that tricks you into wiring (Western Union or MoneyGram) money to someone you don’t know. In my case, "Global Test Market".  They are a dummy company that sent me a letter along with a check explaining what to do when I mystery shop.

On the letter it (by the way looks very professional - Company letterhead and all);

1) Identified an ID Number for me.
2) My Position - Customer Service Evaluator
3) Explained to me what they are all about.  I would be making approx. $350.00 to start a week.  Of course my pay would go up within a few months.
4) Broke down the money on the check - how I am suppose to spend it.
A) My first transaction would be "Stipulated Amount For Western Union assignment" -     $ 2980.00
B) Service Fee Charge by MoneyGram or Western Union                                        -      $ 140.00
C) Walmart Retail Shopping assignment                                                             -         $ 100.00
D) Participation Pay for the first week                                                                       -    $ 200.00
This totals my check amount for  $ 3420.00

The last paragraph is written EXACTLY as follows (typos and all);

Please call your Assigned Training Coordinator @ 1-888-528-1114 ext 1 or 1-905-781-0234 for any further clarification or if you do not understand the offer.  However, if you do understand all the instructions go ahead and deposit your check. (YOU MUST HAVE A VALID CHECKING ACCOUNT) and your coordinator is not permitted to ask you to provide any of your personal banking information and if they do please decline and ask to speak to a supervisor immediately) availability of funds is between 24 to 48 hours after you have made your deposit unless your bank states otherwise. Upon Availability of funds, you must contact your coordinator immediately as failure to do so will result in your check being voided and your coordinator will then provide you with the specific details you will need to complete your first assignment.  Withdraw the required amounts and proceed to evaluations.  Upon completion of evaluations, notify your coordinator and fax your market report forms and all receipts.

If you deposit the check and wire the money, your bank would soon (several days to as long as 6 weeks) learn that the check was a fake. And when the check finally clears the system and bounces, you’re out the money because
  • the money you wired can’t be retrieved, and
  • you’re responsible for any check you deposit — even though you can’t know whether they're fake or genuine.
The checks may look real and even have real account numbers on them.  Your bank may be able to confirm that the bank it is drawn against is real and the account is also real.  But that does not mean that the check itself is genuine.

I hope this post enlightened you... Remember the rule-of-thumb, If it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is.

A final note on what happen to me... I called the Bank (The one on the check) and talked with the manager of the fraud dept.  I have to mail this check to them so they can use it in their training program and show employees the types of scams that are out there.  Also, I called the FBI, the agent I spoke with called my coordinator "Daniel", telling him that she was referred to them by a friend and this Daniel person seemed to have a problem with explaining the contents of the letter.  This is what she told me.  What she did after that, I don't know.  So there you have it... Please feel free to leave a comment.


  1. Thank you SO much for posting this!!! My sister's husband received the exact same letter, except the fraudsters must have seen the need to take out the line about your check being voided-that is not in their letter-otherwise it's exactly the same. They called to have me research it because it looked so legit. I advised them right away it had to be a scam but Googled the company anyway. Unfortunately, there are a lot of positive comments about the company - I'm sure they were 'planted' by 'employees' of the company. I just saw a show on 20/20 or something like that about how even legitimate companies 'stack' the comments on the internet in their favor by using fake names, surveys, etc. to post favorable information about themselves. Your site was one of only two that I saw to call them out! I just hope everyone who gets these fakes will reach this site! The letter looks very legit and the check looks totally real. DON'T FALL FOR IT!!

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    1. OMG... This is absolute horseSHIT!
      i was so excited coming into extra money but I thought This was TGTBT. Thanks you very much for this post. GODBLESS.

  3. I wish I would have found this earlier cause unfortunately I fell victum of the scam and I was woundering what can be done to clear my name of this fraud

  4. Just used this blog entry to save a friend's dad some grief, at least I hope... he cashed the check yesterday and his daughter just happened to mention it to me. A quick google search brought your page up first. THANKS!!!!

  5. Thank's alot for the info. Just recieved a check today for $2,880.00. I can't imagine anyone sending a check for that amount to a complete stranger.

  6. Thanks for the heads up I just received one today for $998.00. After reading this im putting it straight into the shredder. I wonder where they got my info?

  7. I too just received a check in the amount of $998.00. I am so glad that I did this research, just as the author of this post stated "If it is to good to be true, then it is"

  8. thanks from me, too. I have done surveys online from this Global Test Market that were legit but this just didn't seem right. My "job" was for a Walmart Moneypak, totaling $985. To the shredder it goes!

  9. Just received my $998 in the mail yesterday.... glad I googled it before I cashed it... even though this money could be so helpful right now. I will be calling the "issuing" bank and the FBI... Thanks!!!

  10. I just received the very same letter and check. Like most people, the money would be very handy right about now.. So glad to see that someone is using the internet to pass along legit information that helps inform the public of these scams. I also will be calling the FBI and issuing bank about this!

    Thank you!!!

  11. Same here, I just received the letter with a check enclosed of $ 988.00 , Glad I found this blog, otherwise, with the exciment of receiving a check , and an oportunuty to earn some money in this trouble times, ...probably fell into their scam...Thanks...

  12. I received a check for $1095.00 letter head says MO. actual company is in WA scam scam scam. To the shredder it goes.

  13. I received the same letter and a check for $1095.00, i could not believe it was real either so glad i researched and found this, Thank GOD for you,

  14. I received the same check for $1095.00 to go to a walgreens and get a money pak. I'm so glad I listened to my Fiance and checked on this cause I ain't gonna lie I'm definitely one of those people who believe everything! Well that's it! I'm going by the rule of thumb from now on, If it's to good to be true, it probably is! Thank you for saving all of us from a lot of explaining to do or worse!

  15. Thank you sooo much for this information. I also receive the letter and check. I even called them before I did anything with the check. The person I spoke to was quite arrogant to say the least. I am glad I had friends and the forethought to check this out. I also asked how they got my name and address. The "coordinator" says that my information was pooled from my recent shopping at either Walmart or Walgreen's. Perhaps food for thought when filling out those discount card applications. Thanks again.

  16. got my check for $1,095 thanks for the heads-up i started to fill out a survey through a site of facebook but backed out before completing. i guess they got info anyways cause now i'm getting phone calls and now junk mail. the wonders of the computer age! thanks again