Contact 6: Work-at-home mystery shopper scams

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The idea of making a little extra cash is enticing, and ads promise big bucks for stuffing envelopes or becoming a mystery shopper. FOX6's Contact 6 looks into whether those offers are worth checking out.

Thousands are receiving mail, promising hundreds of dollars.

"The person at home may think they have won a lottery or that their prayers have been answered and now they are working from home. Unfortunately, behind the letters, behind the advertisements, are scams," U.S. Postal Inspector Glen McKechnie said.

The con artists tell folks they'll be either evaluating the quality of service in a store or testing a specific product. The envelope they send usually includes a counterfeit check or money order that is supposed to be cashed. The next step is for the recipient to go shopping for the product to be evaluated.

"Once they buy the items, they are told to keep the items and mail the additional money back to the scammer," McKechnie said.

However, the checks are actually counterfeit.

"That solicitation can say anything, as long as there is an attractive hook to it and it`s accompanied by a check," McKechnie said.

FOX6's Contact 6 advises to contact the Better Business Bureau to check out any business that tries to solicit, and never send money to anyone who sends a check or money order unless it is certain they are legitimate.