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Police: Secret shopper checks are fraudulent
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A Manteca man holds a check for $1,765.59 on the JP Morgan Chase Bank in Columbus, Ohio, that he was given to supposedly use as a “secret shopper” at Wal Mart. Police said the check scheme is just that – a scam. - photo by GLENN KAHL
David Brush of Manteca received a check for $17,765 recently to use as a “secret shopper” at Wal-Mart.   He was to keep $220 for his part in carrying out a survey for MoneyGram International facilities.  

Manteca Police and a local bank official both regarded the check as a fraud.

Brush had responded to a classified ad that asked for survey takers to contact them.  While the firm gave a New Jersey address, their telephone area code reflected an office in Canada.

“Your job site will be at any MoneyGram International facilities located at the courtesy desk ‘Wal Mart Stores.’  The main objective is to evaluate and observe the efficiency of the services offered at these locations.  

“In the process of the evaluation, please take note of the services offered in order to fill out correctly a fair and unbiased opinion of the enclosed customer service evaluation form,” was the extent of the instructions.

The MoneyGram survey amount was set at $1,470.  A transfer service fee/commissions amounted to another $75 with the participant’s survey earnings at the $220 amount.  And, to complete the survey the participants were asked to call “Michael Daddy” at a phone number in Canada.