How To Know If Its A Social Security Phone Call Scam
Luckily, there are plenty of red flags you can watch for to determine whether contact from the SSA is real or a social security scam call. As you watch for these signs, you can identify specific hints that could reveal whether the person on the other line is truly who they say they are or not.
Although the Social Security Administration does call people in some instances, they will never threaten you with legal actions or other forms of intimidation.
Scammers will often claim that your social security number is going to be suspended if you dont submit a payment to them. Its important to understand that this is a false assertion and that your social security number will never be suspended.
Other threats that scammers may claim include the possibility of arrest, a loss of benefits, or other legal actions. They will state that you must make a payment over the phone using a Visa gift card, a wire transfer, or by mailing cash. These are not forms of payment that the SSA will ever ask for on behalf of your account.
On the other hand, there may also be social security call scams where the person on the line is kind and offers you assistance with your benefits. They could be friendly and offer helpful services such as getting a new social security card, adding a family member, or getting a record of social security contributions.
How To Tell If Its Legitimate Or A Scam
Scammers are aware that people are catching on to their attempts, so theyre coming up with new ways to convince Social Security beneficiaries that their frauds are legitimate. Heres what to watch for so you can protect yourself and others from Social Security scams.
1. Threatening arrest or legal action: If you receive a threatening phone call claiming that theres an issue with your Social Security number or benefits, its a scam. The Social Security Administration will never threaten you with arrest or other legal action if you dont immediately pay a fine or fee.
2. Emails or texts with personally identifiable information: If theres a legitimate problem with your Social Security number or record, the SSA will mail you a letter to notify you of any issues.
3. Misspellings and grammar mistakes: If the caller follows up with emails containing falsified letters or reports that appear to be from the SSA or SSAs OIG, look closely. The letters may use government “jargon” or letterhead that appears official in order to help convince victims, but they may also contain misspellings and grammar mistakes.
5. Offers to increase benefits in exchange for payment: Similarly, SSA employees will never promise to increase your Social Security benefits, or offer other assistance, in exchange for payment.
Is It A Scam When Social Security Calls
There are very few occasions when the Social Security Administration will contact you unless you have specifically requested a call or have ongoing business with them. There will be times that they reach out to speak with you about previous discussions or to get clarification on questions you already shared with them.
Even if you have been communicating with someone at the SSA, you should still be aware and mindful of the conversation whenever getting a call from them.
Many times a social security scam call can show up on your phone with spoof information showing the SSAs official 800 number on the caller ID. Its not a good idea to trust that these details are always correct since scammers can route their calls through fake numbers with false contact information.
In some rare cases, someone attempting a social security phone call scam could even use the real name of an SSA employee.
Ideally, you should only trust a phone call from the SSA if you have a specific point of contact youre working with or you requested a call from them. If you have any question as to whether theyre legitimate, you should end the call and reach out to them yourself.
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Fake Email Headers And Phishing
Victims can also be reeled in by phishing emails that appear to be messages from the SSA. The emails may have attachments that resemble actual letters from the SSA, complete with the agency’s seal and similar font styles. The email messages may also direct readers to a fake web page designed to look like the real SSA website.
The motive is to obtain personal information from you, which you should never provide. The same clues of fraudulent intent as with the phone calls apply here. The SSA says that legitimate emails from the agency never seek personal information and do not adopt an alarmist or threatening tone.
The Social Security Administration says it will never use intimidating or threatening language in any form of communication.
How To Protect Yourself From Social Security Fraud
As with all scams, the best way to avoid becoming a victim is to stay vigilant. If you receive a phone call asking for your Social Security number or other personal information, its best to hang up immediately. You may also want to consider adding the callers phone number to a blocked-call list to help prevent repeated nuisance calls.
Be aware, however, that spoofing allows scammers to use a succession of misleading numbers. So, unfortunately, blocking the first number that called you doesn’t stop further calls from different phone numbers.
Be sure that your information, including your Social Security card, is stored securely. Shred any documents with sensitive information rather than just putting them in the trash. If you access Social Security information online, keep your password to yourself and change it regularly to minimize the likelihood of your account being hacked.
It’s also worth checking your credit reports on a regular basis to make sure no one has compromised your financial information. A paid might also be helpful. Finally, try to keep up to date with the latest Social Security scams. The SSAs Office of the Inspector General monitors these and issues warnings as new schemes arise.
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What To Do With Social Security Scam Calls
If you have any reason to suspect the call is a social security scam, then you should immediately hang up the phone.
Do not provide them with any information such as your first or last name, social security number, home address, email address, banking info, where you work, or details about other family members. After hanging up, do not try to call back the same number.
Whether you provide the scammer with any of your personal information by mistake or not, it is always a good idea to report the call to the proper authorities.
If You Suspect Someone Is Using Your Sin
If you think someone else is using your SIN, act quickly. This will help prevent loss and minimize the negative impact.
Be vigilant Watch for signs that someone else is using your SIN. For example, ifCRA contacts you with a Notice of Reassessment for undeclared earnings, it may mean that someone else used your SIN to work or to receive other taxable income.
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Social Security Fraud By Mail
While the rise of scams perpetrated electronically, and thus cheaply, has reduced the volume of Social Security fraud by mail, the practice has not entirely vanished. One such scheme is a direct mail scam that primarily targets older people
A letter comes in the mail offering an extra check, along with a form asking for personal information and a filing fee. In it, the scammer asks the recipient for a Social Security number, money, and/or bank account information to help with the application.
Again, this is a red flag. The Social Security Administration will never ask for your full Social Security number, because it already knows it. In the event the SSA does send you a letterfor example, when your benefits increaseit will never ask you for money or any other personal information.
The Social Security Administration will never ask you for your full Social Security number. It already knows it.
The Importance Of Credit Monitoring
As fraudsters continue to vary their tactics and use more sophisticated techniques, its important to remain vigilant to protect your data identity. Be cautious when giving out personal information online and make sure to consistently monitor your . Doing so can help you spot any suspicious activity and respond to potential identity theft in a timely manner. To help, consider a paid subscription to a product like TransUnion Credit Monitoring. With TransUnion Credit Monitoring, you can get email alerts whenever there are changes to any of your accounts or when your report is pulled for a new line of credit, making it easy for you to stay up to date with your data identity.
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Report Social Security Scam Calls
Social Security Administration and its Inspector General Announce New Online Reporting Form for Imposter Scam Calls
Andrew Saul, Commissioner of Social Security, and Gail S. Ennis, the Inspector General for the Social Security Administration, announce the launch of a dedicated online form at to receive reports from the public of Social Security-related scams. These scamsin which fraudulent callers mislead victims into making cash or gift card payments to avoid arrest for purported Social Security number problemsskyrocketed over the past year to become the #1 type of fraud reported to the Federal Trade Commission and the Social Security Administration.
To combat these scams, Social Security and the OIG will use the new online form to capture data that will be analyzed for trends and commonalities. The OIG will use the data to identify investigative leads, which could help identify criminal entities or individuals participating in or facilitating the scams. Ultimately, these efforts are expected to disrupt the scammers, help reduce this type of fraud, and reduce the number of victims.
We are taking action to raise awareness and prevent scammers from harming Americans, Commissioner Saul said. I am deeply troubled that our country has not been able to stop these crooks from deceiving some of the most vulnerable members of our society.
Social Security will not:
Protect Yourself From Social Security Scam Calls
The best way to avoid becoming a victim of social security scam phone calls is by staying educated and up-to-date on the tactics scammers are using. This will make it easier for you to identify suspicious activity and prevent any loss.
Keep up with the Makios Technology blog to learn more about ways to protect yourself and your business from scams and other virtual threats! Were constantly sharing updates about potential issues and ways that scammers are trying to take advantage of individuals all over the country!
Every year, hundreds of thousands of people get social security scam calls. These conversations often lead to individuals losing hundreds or even thousands of dollars to scammers who are making false claims.
Learn what to watch for, how to report social security scam calls, and how to stop them in this guide. Youll find all the information you need about what entities to contact and how to avoid becoming a victim of these terrible scams.
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Social Insurance Number Scam: How It Works
Beware of a new Social Insurance Number scam going around nationwide. It comes as one of the many Service Canada scam calls done by crooks saying that your Social Insurance Number has been suspended. Later on, in this article, we have an audio recording of a crook who happened to call our number at Scam Detector.
Anyway, you can rest assured that these criminals are not from the Government of Canada. Lets dive in.
The phone rings. You respond. An automated system something like this:
Hello, this call is from the Government of Canada. We have got an order to suspend your Social Insurance Number on an immediate basis because your social has been found suspicious for some illegal and criminal activity. It is time-sensitive and urgent to hear back from you before we proceed with the suspension of your Social Insurance Number or assets. Please press 1 to speak with our officer, thank you.
Listen to the audio file below to hear a scammer who called our number:
The phone number used was 430-2860, but dont get fooled criminals change these numbers very often, as soon as one has been reported.
So, how does the Social Insurance Number scam works? Lets see.
How To Report Online Fraud And Phone Scams In Abu Dhabi
Find out how to report online fraud in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
Dubai: Have you been a victim of online fraud and want to file a complaint? Abu Dhabi Police just provided details on how to report fraud online scams through an online post on their official social media channels on Tuesday, February 15.
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Attorney General Hunter Issues Consumer Alert On Social Security Administration Phone Scams
OKLAHOMA CITY Attorney General Mike Hunter today warned Oklahomans to be aware of phone calls from scam artists claiming to be with the Social Security Administration and attempting to steal social security numbers and money.
A scam will typically involve the con artist telling individuals their social security number has been suspended because of suspicious activity, or because it has been involved in a crime. The scammers will then request for the victim to confirm their social security number in order to reactivate it.
In other instances, scammers will tell victims their bank account is about to be seized. In order to keep it safe, the individual needs to put money on a gift card and give them the codes.
Attorney General Hunter said scam phone calls are extremely hard to trace and the best course of action is to hang up the phone.
Oklahomans need to be on high alert about this growing, deceitful scam, Attorney General Hunter said. If they receive phone calls with someone claiming to be with the SSA and asking for their social security number or money, they need to hang up the phone immediately. Authorities with the SSA will never call an individual requesting information or money over the phone.
Although my office welcomes consumers to file complaints, the best action individuals can take is to learn about these scams and be informed to prevent loss.
The FTC offers the following tips to avoid being taken advantage of by a scam:
A New Sin Does Not Protect You From Fraud And Identity Theft
The Government can only share your new SIN with the federal departments and agencies that use your SIN.
Therefore, you are responsible of providing your new SIN to every financial institution, creditor, pension provider, recent and current employer, and any other organization with which you shared your old SIN.
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How The Scam Works
Medicare and Social Security beneficiaries across the country report receiving calls from scam operators , who claim to represent Medicare, Social Security, or an insurance company. These callers claim that new Medicare, Social Security, or supplemental insurance benefits cards are being issued or that the beneficiaryâs file must be updated. The scam artist asks the citizen to verify or provide their personal banking information, which is then used to commit theft.
The caller may be extremely aggressive, calling over and over, and at all times of the day, in an attempt to wear down the potential victim. These criminals will say anything to try to gain a personâs trust. In some cases, the criminals may have already obtained some limited personal information about the citizen, such as his or her name, address, or even Social Security number, which the criminal then uses to try to make the call seem legitimate. In other cases, the callers may claim that they can improve the benefits. Do not believe these claims, and do not carry on a conversation with the caller. Instead, if you receive a call asking you to disclose your bank account or other financial information, hang up immediately. These are criminals, and by speaking with the callers, even to ask them to stop calling, they may be encouraged to continue calling your telephone number.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services7500 Security Boulevard
Reporting Social Security Scams
The Social Security Administration wants to combat malicious activities, so they make it easy to report Social Security fraud. You can submit a report on the Office of the Inspector General website. Youll need to gather as many details as possible, including the date of incidents and the phone number it originated from, as well as the phone number you were directed to call.
Once youve submitted information about your Social Security phone call, email, or letter, the OIG will investigate. Unfortunately, they wont be able to share information about the investigation, including any findings, but the more victims report these attempts at fraud, the more equipped the SSA will be to not only investigate but also warn others.
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Fraudulent & Threatening Phone Calls
Perhaps the most disturbing type of Social Security scam call is the one that threatens legal action or, worse, arrest if you dont pay some amount immediately. The callers will say theres an issue with your number, your account or your benefits, possibly due to identity theft.
Trouble with the law isnt the only way they try to get you to take action. This type of Social Security phone scam has them threatening to suspend your Social Security number if you dont remit payment.
The IRS will never call you to demand payment for an issue. Most importantly, though, employees will not threaten you if you dont pay.
If you get a threatening phone call relating to your Social Security benefit, you can consider politely requesting a written letter detailing the issue mailed to you from the caller. Do not provide your mailing address to the caller – if they are legitimate, they should have your full contact information. If not, youve just avoided being scammed!