Reputable Mystery Shopping Providers Protect Consumers
Two people were recently indicted in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh for using the old Nigerian money-order scam to bilk money out of unsuspecting consumers. Reports say these criminals posed as mystery shopping companies in order to perpetrate their fraud.
This scam tricked honest people out of their hard-earned money. It's unfortunate and illegal. And, it’s important to note, it had nothing to do with the mystery shopping industry or the many reputable companies that provide mystery shopping services to clients around the world.
At IntelliShop, we are vigilant in our efforts to protect both consumers and our clients. We adhere to strict standards of ethics and integrity. We’re also active members of the Mystery Shopping Providers Association (MSPA), the only worldwide trade association dedicated to the practice of mystery shopping. In fact, IntelliShop’s owner and chief client officer, Ron Welty, served on the board and in various officer positions of the MSPA for more than eight years.
IntelliShop and other reputable mystery shopping companies help uphold ethical business practices and combat attempted crimes in a number of ways, including:
- Posting educational information for consumers about these issues on our website
- Fully complying with the by-laws of the MSPA
- Aggressively working with law enforcement and governmental agencies to catch the people committing these crimes when they are identified
- Providing guidance to consumers and shoppers on how to combat these when they have fallen victim to them
The MSPA has more than 170 members in North America and more than 300 worldwide. In addition to ensuring that its members meet the highest standards of ethics and integrity, the MSPA also has a long track record of educating and supporting the mystery shopper community.
Legitimate mystery shopping is estimated to be a $2 billion industry worldwide, with more than 2 million mystery shoppers involved. Mystery shopping programs are utilized by thousands of companies, including nearly all chain brands in consumer-facing industries such as retail, financial services, restaurants, automotive sales and services, and many more, to help clients evaluate and improve the customer experience from both a sales and service perspective. Learn more at www.mysteryshop.org