Victim Location 37918
Type of a scam Employment
I responded to a job posting for work at home as a secret shopper. After submitting the application I did not think anything about it. I received a USPS envelope from the address above containing instructions and an official check drawn on Citibank. The instructions stated I was to deposit the check into my account, let Mark know so he could release the funds, then withdraw enough funds to send two people (their names and information were included) via MoneyGram as a secret shop. There were also instructions on how to answer questions that may be asked from the MoneyGram representative. I did a mobile deposit of the check and my bank put it on a manager’s hold. During this time Mark text first asking if the check was deposited. When I told him yes, he said he released the funds and I can withdraw the money from my bank. I told him it was still showing a hold and sent him pictures of where it said the check was under a manager’s hold until 3/31. The next day Mark text and asked if the task was complete. I stated the check was still under a hold. He said it was because they could not verify the funds but the funds are now available so I can go to my bank and withdraw the money to complete the task. I stated I would not do that until the funds had been released to my account. This all started on 3/22. On 3/24 I called Citibank to try to see if the check was a real check. The Citibank employee, Brian, reassured me since it said official check that it was a good check. I just called the 800-number so I do not know where Brian works. Well on 3/28 I noticed something funny on my account and called my bank. I spoke to a woman in the fraud department and she told me the check was fake. I asked if I owed anything and she said I would not owe anything unless I withdrew money from my account based on the check being in there. I told her I had not and she said if someone else deposited the check she would recommend changing my online banking information. I received two emails from Mark Thompson afterwards stating an envelope was mailed containing a check and a task on 3/30 and 3/31.