Target Secret Shopper (Is It a Scam + Things To Be Aware Of)

Retailers are always trying to improve their customer’s experience by using feedback about the current products and services.

One of the ways that retailers get this information is by hiring a secret or mystery shopper to get this information. So, does Target have secret shoppers? Here are the things you need to be aware of!

Target Secret Shopper In [currentyear]

Target doesn’t have secret shoppers as of [currentyear]. While most retailers have this service, Target says it doesn’t recruit people for this role. Therefore, if you receive an email with a secret shopper job offer and a check, it’s a scam to steal your money or identity. Target warns its customers to avoid responding to such job offers.

Read on for more information about whether Target has secret shoppers, things you need to know, signs to look out for, and how to protect yourself!

What Is A Secret Shopper?

Also known as a mystery shopper, a secret shopper is hired by a retailer or restaurant to help them conduct market research.

Suppose you are hired as a secret shopper.

In that case, your role involves testing the company’s products and services to learn about customer experiences and provide feedback to help improve the quality of services.

Additionally, secret shoppers are expected to purchase particular items or get services at a store and report the experience.

Naturally, this job comes with pay; therefore, the retailer or restaurant will reimburse you after making the purchase. However, it’s ideal as a part-time job because the pay is not that high.

Does Target Use Secret Shoppers?

According to the Target website, the retailer is not affiliated with mystery shopping firms and individuals.

Therefore, if you receive an email with a secret shopper offer from Target, you should avoid it because scammers run these programs.

What Are The Things You Should Be Aware Of?

Here are some things you should know about how secret shopper scammers work to protect yourself.

How The Scam Works

Scammers involved in Target’s secret shopper usually send their victims a letter and check. That said, the letter informs the customer that they can make money as a secret shopper.

Also, the scammers will send instructions about carrying out the assignment at the Target store to get you to trust them.

Moreover, these scammers send a fake check which they expect the victims to deposit in their bank accounts.

In addition, you will be asked to wire the cash to the scammers to try out services such as Western Union.

Alternatively, you could be asked to buy gift cards and share the numbers with them.

When the check bounces, you’ll have already sent the money or the gift cards, and the scammer will cut communication.

Since the check has bounced, you’ll still need to pay back the bank the entire amount plus the penalty fees.

Lastly, scammers also use this tactic to steal personal information, which they use for identity theft.

Signs To Look Out For

Signs To Look Out For Target

If you receive such job offers, the first thing to look out for is the email address because most scammers will use an address that appears like the Target one.

With that, customers who have been victims before received an email supposedly from Target with a $400 gift card reward if they signed up.

Therefore, before responding to any email, you should confirm that it’s actually from Target to avoid losing money.

Also, you need to remember that since the retailer does not have any mystery shoppers, Target won’t send such unsolicited job offers to your email.

Additionally, Target has a hiring process for all its jobs.

How Can You Protect Yourself From Target Secret Shopper Scams?

Here are some ways to protect yourself from falling prey to scammers claiming to offer secret shopper jobs from Target.

Check Your Emails Keenly

If you are not keen, you could easily fall prey to this secret shopper scam. So, when you receive an email, ensure that you check the source and details, such as the email sender.

With that, you can identify any issues, such as fake email addresses not from Target.

Don’t Deposit Random Checks

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), most secret shopper scammers use this tactic to get money from their victims.

Therefore, if you were not expecting any checks, it’s advisable to avoid depositing random ones that come to your email.

Target’s Hiring Process

Target has an official hiring process for all its open positions. Therefore, Target doesn’t send job offers via email or ask potential employees to pay.=

That said, if you get an email requesting all of these, it’s a red flag, and you’re dealing with a scammer.

Check The Proper Websites

Although Target does not hire secret shoppers, you could get this job on other websites.

Fortunately, you can check the Mystery Shopper Professionals Association (MSPA) website, which includes a list of providers.

Additionally, you need to know that MPSA does not advertise these jobs; therefore, they will not send you an email with a job offer.

Can You Report A Target Secret Shopper Scam?

If you receive such emails from scammers asking you to become a secret shopper for Target, you can report this.

That said, you can submit a complaint or report to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for further assistance.

To learn more, you can also read our posts on whether or not Target hire felons, Target complaints, and does Target pays weekly or bi-weekly.


Target does not have secret shoppers, so it’s a scam to steal your money or identity if you receive an email with a secret shopper job offer and a check.

Also, Target warns its customers to avoid responding to such job offers to avoid losing money. However, you can protect yourself if you pay attention to your emails.

For example, most of the scam emails are from a fake address, have a counterfeit check, and have instructions on how to wire funds.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of

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