What Is a Dummy Shopper? ‘Emily the Criminal’ Job Meaning, Is It Real?

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If you watched Emily the criminal Netflix may leave you with two questions: what is a dummy shopper and is it a real scam?

Emily the criminal Aubrey Plaza plays Emily Benetto, a Los Angeles woman struggling to find a well-paying job after a previous felony conviction took her to a job as a “dummy shopper” to pay off her mountains of college debt. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly in 2022, Plaza explained what drew her to the idea for Emily the criminal. The script is an incredible read. John Patton Ford is such a talented writer,” she said. “I loved it. Couldn’t put it down. I really read it for recreational purposes. I’ve read a lot of scripts and a friend gave me this one and man I just couldn’t get it out of my head. I loved the character She continued, “And I just love the energy, the dynamic. You start the movie and you don’t stop. It “There’s no pandering to the audience. There’s no random exhibition scene. There’s just nothing unnecessary. It just feels sleek and fun, and I was immediately obsessed with it after reading it.”

But back to dummy shoppers. So… what is a dummy shopper and is it a real scam? Read on for what we know about what a dummy shopper is and how many real people are affected by the scam each year.

What is a dummy shopper?

Emily the criminal

Image: Roadside Attractions / Courtesy Everett Collection.

What is a dummy shopper? in the Emily the criminal At Netfix, Emily Benetto, the character of Aubrey Plaza, becomes a “dummy shopper” after a colleague at her job at a catering company connects her to a “dummy shopper” service that promises to pay her $200 per hour, which Emily soon finds out about a credit card fraud ring. Emily’s first task is to buy a flat screen TV using a fake credit card and ID. After she is successful, she is sent on a larger quest to buy a car with an unlimited credit card.

So what is a dummy shopper? Dummy shopping is a real scam. Urban Dictionary defines dummy shopping as the “illegal activity” of “using stolen credit cards to buy expensive goods.” As explained by Distractify, dummy shoppers, also known as dummy shoppers, use fake, stolen, or cloned credit cards to make expensive purchases, which are then sold to third parties for profit. in the Emily the criminal, the credit card fraud ring Emily works for, has a list of stolen card numbers, including the owners’ names and dates, that were used to complete the transactions. The scam also involved forging ID cards used to confirm the identity of the credit card holder.

The Federal Trade Commission reported in 2022 that the agency received more than 2.8 million fraud reports from consumers in 2021. Consumers also said they lost more than $5.8 billion to fraud in 2021, a more than 70 percent increase from 2020, according to the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC also reported that the most common fraud categories are fraud by scammers, followed by online shopping fraud. Prizes, Sweepstakes and Lotteries, Internet Services, and Business and Job Opportunities were the other top categories.

is Emily the criminal Based on a true story?

Emily the criminal

Image: Roadside Attractions / Courtesy of the Everett Collection.

is Emily the criminal Based on a true story? The answer is yes and no. In an interview with the Golden Globes, director John Patton Ford explained that the idea for Emily the Criminal came from a dummy buying ring he read about in his neighborhood. “I had first lived in an LA neighborhood where I knew organized criminal activity was going on in the neighborhood, but I wasn’t sure what — until one day that FBI bust on the cover of That Was LA times,” he said. “The FBI had arrested almost 100 people and you could read the entire affidavit on the internet, so I read it all and learned about one of the crimes this organization committed with this elaborate bogus buyer scheme.”

Ford also revealed that its own credit card information was previously hacked. “I’ve been hacked and I feel like everyone has. It’s funny because actually my credit card information was stolen while we were making this movie and one day I couldn’t get food at the grocery store because my credit card was blocked. It really made me ask, ‘Why am I making a film about the people who do this crap?'” he said. He also explained that part of the inspiration for Emily the Criminal came from his own struggle with student loan debt, much like Emily did, and the “fear and despair” of how he was going to pay it back. “When I got out of grad school I had about a hundred thousand dollars in student debt, and I think I had a lot of anxiety and despair about it and ‘how am I ever going to pay that back?’ kind of feelings. I knew I wasn’t alone and it just seems crazy that 30 percent of the population in the US has this massive problem that they’re dealing with and you’d never know after our movies, so has it started with that,” he said.

Ford also revealed this to Outtake magazine Emily the criminal wasn’t initially inspired by his own personal experiences with debt until “a few years” after he began working on the script. “I think I came up with the idea for a thriller that starts with just someone walking into a meeting and being offered a job opportunity. There was nothing personal about it – it was a catch, just a mercenary idea I had,” he said. “It only got personal over time. And then a few years after I had the idea, I started thinking about her character, specifically as the person who would do it. It took some time to figure out what was personal and what was emotional, but we finally got there.”

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Aubrey Plaza, who plays Emily, admitted she didn’t know what a dummy shopper was until she was cast Emily the criminal. “No, definitely not. That was something John discovered while living in LA and researching the film. But no, it’s a real thing. I definitely didn’t know about it. Of course, I know about credit card fraud and I think everyone knows it, but it’s a world I wasn’t privy to until I started working on this film,” she said. Plaza also revealed that while she didn’t discuss the role with any real bogus buyers, she chose Ford “I didn’t have that. But John was my source and he had. I think he did more of a deep dive and had more personal connections to writing the film,” he said she.”I haven’t gone that route and spoken to real bogus buyers, but I’ve worked with this embossing machine and I know how to operate this thing. So if my career doesn’t work out, I know how to make a fake credit card.” , and who en I’ll take it to the end.” Plaza also told Dazed that she hasn’t heard from real dummy shoppers since either Emily the criminal was published. “I personally don’t. But I know in a lot of ways people feel seen by the film and I’m sure credit card fraudsters are having their day in the sun,” she said.

Ford also explained why he doesn’t think Emily the criminal glorifies personal shopping unlike other crime films and TV shows. “Well, I think it has to do with the quality of life in the United States,” he said. “I think viewers don’t know how to calculate in their own lives,” he said. “You have to pay off all this student debt. The hurdle to home ownership is currently insurmountable for the majority of Americans, especially millennials and young people. So we feel great relief and great satisfaction watching the shows about people actually breaking the rules to get what they want. Because we so often have the feeling that this must be the only way. What else can we expect? I think that’s where it all comes from. Emily the criminal is probably dirtier and more raunchy than those shows, but I think it comes from the same jam.”

Emily the criminal can be streamed on Netflix.

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Sarah Ridley

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