Tuesday, August 08, 2006

GPS units can't help you run a scam!

Some people think that just because you have a receipt that you can do whatever you like. They believe that a receipt is a magical "Golden Ticket" into Wal-Mart's Willy Wonka land of magical easy no-hassle returns and "I'll take that in cash, please" carefree summer days. That's nice and all, and if you're not a scammer, that is pretty close to how it works. If you pay in cash or a debit card, you get cash. If you paid by another method — be it credit card, EBT (food stamps), shop card or whatever, then you get that method of tender in return. Yes, we can put your food stamp money back on your food stamp card.

But some novice scammers like to try to work at trick with our gift receipts that they haven't thought through well enough. Even though it is a "gift receipt," it is still basically the same receipt that the original item was purchased on. The computer system won't let you give back MORE money than the entire amount of the original purchase.

This is how it broke down.

Sunday morning this girl walked up and wanted to return a GPS unit on a gift receipt. She claimed that her sister had bought her one and she didn't need two. Okaaaaaaaay. So you just happened to buy a $450 GPS unit, then called your sister, find out she got you the SAME thing and decide to return it, all within the space of 20 minutes? And I can see that the transaction was just under a half-hour ago. So you're not fooling anyone. Nevertheless, she did have a receipt for it. So I did the return.

The whole time, the girl was real chatty and asked how long I was going to be on my shift today and all the sort of questions people ask to try and make you think they are your friend. Scammer. One hundred percent. The second she left I called my supervisor over.

Once we looked up the receipt in the computer we found out that they returned one back in Electronics, then bought another one on an American Express card, then another one with cash. Something fishy was going on. My supervisor paged for the Assistant manager over that area. She confirmed that she had approved the return of one of the units and that it was defective, and that she had taken two more out of the locked case to give to them.

So at this point, we know they bought two cameras, returned one of them and had another in their possession. We also knew that something fishy was going on. So we waited for the other shoe to drop.

It dropped an hour later. The girl's "sister" rolled up and wanted to return the other GPS unit with the other half of the receipt that she had cut the gift receipt off of. Well, I knew how this was going to play out, because the system wasn't going to let me give her any money, but I knew the alert would come up on the supevisor handheld computers. When they all saw the $465 attemted return they would all be up there in a flash. Indeed.

The register made a BEEP noise and spit out a piece of paper. I showed it to the woman and started to explain. I saw my supervisor edge around behind the desk out of the corner of my eye. I told her "This receipt has already been used to return an item. You can't use it again."

So she tries to be aggressive. "What do you mean 'already been used?'" "Ma'am, we've already returned one GPS unit on this receipt. You can see where the gift receipt was cut off. Whoever you gave this gift to has already returned the item."

You could see her mind working, trying to figure out how to get that $465 and not be stuck with pretty much a worthless GPS unit. It wasn't happening though. She decided she and the sister had better split.

If you're gonna run game, you gotta run a better game than that!


Anonymous said...

Wanna bet they did not even know what a GPS unit is for?? Let alone how to use one. DUMB A****

FARfetched said...

Sometimes, I find myself thinking if these people would put as much effort into a real job as they do trying to game the system (whether it be Wal-mart's or someone else's), they could become quite successful in life.

fueltank said...

Just discovered your blog and it is very entertaining. One question, though. They bought three units, returned two of them for refunds and now are returning the third one for a refund.

What did they think they were going to get?

Bought and returned one at electronics, bought one more on the AmEx and one more for cash. Retunred one to you with ½ the gift receipt, tried to return another one with the other ½. If successful they would have zero units, three refunds for three purchases and one extra receipt, no product.

Am I missing something? Did one come back no box and they wanted to claim an empty box scam?

Anonymous said...

Like Fueltank I'm having a hardtime trying to figure out how someone would get ahead with this?

Leigh said...

ditto to other people's confusion.

Anonymous said...

They were trying to get a cash advance on their credit card.

They paid for two, one cash and one credit, but tried to return both of them using the two copies of the cash receipt.