Consumer Alert

The following scam is not from Aaron & Company. We are listing it here in an effort to educate you about this fraudulent activity. If you feel that you have been defrauded, please contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at www.ftc.gov or at 1-877-FTC-HELP, or the Consumer Fraud Division of your state's Attorney General's Office.

Beware of Mystery Shopper Fake Check Scam

We have become aware of a few instances in which consumers were solicited with counterfeit checks in the mail purported to have been sent from an Aaron & Company location. These consumers were asked to take part in mystery shopping (or secret shopping) activities to evaluate the services of another business. The scam asks the consumer to deposit the check into the their bank account, pose as a shopper and then use Money Gram to send the balance of the check's proceeds (minus the cost of the purchases and the consumer's "salary") to an address outside of the United States. However, the check is fake; so when it bounces (is returned to your account by your bank as “insufficient funds” or a “drawn on a closed account”), which occurs after the money is wired, the consumer is accountable to the bank for the entire amount of the fake check, plus any additional penalty fees.

Aaron & Company Practices

  • Aaron & Company does NOT utilize or participate in any mystery shopper or secret shopper services such as these.
  • We will NEVER mail you a check and ask that you deposit it in order to purchase an item or service and keep the remainder of the amount as payment for services.

How Can I Protect Myself

To avoid fake check scams, please follow these tips:
  • Look for the unusual. Always question why you got the check, and whether everything lines up. When in doubt, please call our Accounts Payable Department at 732-752-8200 to confirm the validity of a mailer or a check from us.
  • Don't cash the "unexpected" check. Companies rarely, if ever, send checks that don't include some explanation of why the check was issued. Unless you are expecting the check and you are absolutely certain it is meant for you — do not cash it.
  • Don't "keep the change." No legitimate company will overpay you and ask that you wire the difference back to the company or to some third party. Be extremely wary of any offer to accept a check or money order in an amount greater than what you are owed.
  • Check the sender's methods of communication. Legitimate businesses rarely communicate exclusively through social media or messaging apps, and hiring managers and executives of those companies generally do not use personal email accounts (i.e., gmail or hotmail) for business purposes.
  • Call the company directly to verify the check. Some fake checks will have a legitimate company's actual account number with the correct bank routing number. Call the company directly to verify the check, using a telephone number you obtain on your own from directory assistance at the company. Do not use any telephone number that appears on the check or in any instructions you receive. For information about Aaron & Company mailings and checks, call our Accounts Payable Department directly at (732) 752-8200.

For more details about fraudulent activity and suggested best practices to protect yourself, please visit the Federal Trade Commission Consumer Website.