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Secret Shopper

Secret Shopper
Secret Shopper

Experts say people are especially vulnerable this time of year, tempted by the offer to act as a “secret shopper” in exchange for extra cash.

“Who doesn’t want to go shopping and make a little money,” says Lisa Bates.

Bates recently received an unsolicited “priority mail” envelope with a check inside for $2,450. The sender claimed to be offering a cash advance for help evaluating retail gift cards.

The letter asked Bates to deposit the check, then purchase $2,000 worth of gift cards within 24 hours. She was then told to scratch off a code on the back of the card and send a picture to a cell phone number, giving the scammer access to the gift card.

She didn’t fall for it but others have.

The Better Business Bureau’s “scam tracker” has logged more than 100 reports about these fake check scams in recent years. Nationally, it’s the second most common complaint to the BBB. People in their 20s are the most frequent victims.

Tune in to FOX 17 for the full story on Friday, Jan. 17th at 9pm.