Chesterfield woman warns against secret shopper scam

Scam Alerts

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Chesterfield woman is speaking out after she was the victim of a secret shopper scam.

Bretiss Zacek caught onto the scam before anything happened but told 8News she feels insulted.

“It makes me feel like they violated me,” said Zacek.

Zacek received a package with a $2,987 check and a letter from PostedJobs Inc. Professional Survey and Research Group. The package tracks back to Sacramento, California.

The letter inside, signed from someone named Thomas Tyler, said, “There have been various reports of lapses in the management and services provided by some banks and Walmart locations in your area.”

It asked Zacek to cash the check, which she thought was fraudulent, at her bank. Once the check clears, the letter asked Zacek to purchase a cashier check of $20 made out to “breast cancer research” and use the rest of the money to buy six $400 Walmart gift cards. 

The letter told Zacek to evaluate the customer service at her bank and the Walmart locations, as if she were a secret shopper. In return, she would be able to keep $400 for herself and a bonus of $100 if she completes the “assignment” within 24 hours. At first, it caught her attention.

“Sounds too good to be true,” Zacek said.

But after talking to her daughter, she knew something was wrong.

“She said, ‘Mom, this is a scam,'” said Zacek.

She suspects her information was taken while she was browsing secret shopper jobs online the other day.

“I didn’t apply for a job but I don’t know if they got it off of there,” she said.

Now she does not want anyone else to fall for the scam.

“I think it would be very easy to fool somebody,” said Zacek.

8News called the phone number included in the letter for Thomas Tyler but has not heard back. The Better Business Bureau posted an alert earlier this year that said another consumer had also been solicited for a secret shopper position by PostedJobs Inc. Professional Survey and Research Group.

The checks in that package were found to be fraudulent. The BBB reached out to the group but has not gotten a response.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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