I was recently a target of an attempted Shipt scam, where an unscrupulous hacker/thief attempted to gain access to my Shipt Shopper account. I’m not the only one who’s had to deal with this problem before – it’s something that countless other Shipt Shoppers have likely dealt with. For example, the Verge reported on this story a few years ago. Another article from Vice shared similar stories about Shipt Shoppers falling victim to scammers.
Fortunately, if you’re careful about who you share personal information with and follow the advice in this post, you can make sure you don’t fall for any of these scams.
With that said, in this post, we’ll take a look at the most common Shipt scams, how they work, and what you should do to avoid falling victim to any of these Shipt scams.
While there are countless Shipt scams possible, most of them work in the same way. Some scammers are customers aiming to get themselves free groceries. These are an annoyance and potentially harmful if they lead to you getting deactivated as a Shopper.
The more harmful scammers are criminals seeking to gain access to your Shipt account to steal your money. I’ll address each of these scams in this section.
1. The Fake Customer Service Rep Scam
The most common scam – and the one that can be most devastating financially – is the fake customer service representative scam. In this scam, the scammer calls the Shopper and tells them that something is wrong with their account and that they’ll need to confirm a verification code to keep their account active.
This is the scam that someone attempted to do to me. The thief called my phone and told me that my account was going to be put in inactive status due to high demand in my area. They then asked me if I wanted to keep my account active. When I said yes, they asked me to hold, then told me to read them back a six-digit verification code that was texted to my phone so that they could verify my account. I immediately hung up upon hearing this, as I know to never give out any verification code to anyone. Interestingly enough, the code that was texted to me specifically says not to share the code and that no one from Shipt will ever call me and ask for it.
The way this scam works is that to get into your Shipt Shopper account, the scammer needs your login information as well as the verification code that gets texted to your phone. Once they get this information, they can gain access to your account and then change your bank account information and password. They’ll then cash out your earnings to their bank account before you can do anything about it.
Generally, a scammer can get your phone number by placing a small order, then calling you and acting like they are from Shipt. I’m not sure how the scammer who tried to get into my account got my information, but I’m guessing it’s because I was using a bad password that had been exposed in a data breach.
There are two important things you can do to avoid falling into this situation. First, if you aren’t using a strong password, I recommend doing so. You can use a random password generator from Google Password Manager or any other reputable password manager (I personally use 1Password, which I’ve had a great experience with).
The second thing is to never share any verification codes with anyone. Shipt makes it clear when they text you a verification code that they will never ask for the code. No employee needs that information either. If you ever receive a phone call from someone purporting to be from Shipt asking for a verification code, you should immediately hang up and block the number.
2. The Customer Says You Didn’t Deliver Their Grocery Order
The second most common Shipt scam is where the customer makes a false claim that they never received their order. Customers do this in an attempt to get free groceries.
Unfortunately, this is a tough one to deal with because Shipt will often side with customers over the Shopper. The best thing you can do to avoid issues here is to thoroughly document your deliveries. Take pictures of every delivery you complete. That way, if there are any issues, you can submit information to support yourself. Some Shoppers go so far as to wear GoPro cameras or body cams when doing their Shipt orders.
There’s no guarantee that documenting your delivery will protect you, but it’s better to have something to support yourself if you can.
These are the main Shipt scams that you need to be aware of when working as a Shipt Shopper. The fake customer service rep scam is the one to be most cognizant of, as there are so many scammers out there looking to steal your hard-earned money. Fortunately, if you follow the tips and strategies in this post, you should be able to avoid falling victim to these scams.
I hope this information helps. If you’ve encountered other Shipt scams that are worth mentioning, please feel free to leave them in the comments below and I’ll update this post as needed.