What should I do if I get a call claiming there’s a problem with my Social Security number or account?
(Source: Social Security Administration)
If there is a problem, we will mail you a letter. Generally, we will only contact you if you have requested a call or have ongoing business with us. The latest scam trick of using robocalls or live callers has increased. Fraudsters pretend to be government employees and claim there is identity theft or another problem with one’s Social Security number (SSN), account, or benefits.
Scammers may threaten arrest or other legal action, or may offer to increase benefits, protect assets, or resolve identity theft. They often demand payment via retail gift cards, wire transfers, pre-paid debit cards, internet currency, or mailing cash.
Our employees will never threaten you for information or promise a benefit in exchange for personal information or money.
We may call you in some situations, but will never:
- Threaten you.
- Suspend your SSN.
- Demand immediate payment from you.
- Require payment by cash, gift card, pre-paid debit card, internet currency, or wire transfer.
- Ask for gift card numbers over the phone or to wire or mail cash.
- Ask for personal details or banking information to give you a Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA).
Don’t be fooled! You should look out for:
- A caller saying there is a problem with your SSN or account.
- Any call asking you to pay a fine or debt with retail gift cards, wire transfers, pre-paid debit cards, internet currency, or by mailing cash.
- Scammers pretending they’re from us or another government agency. Caller ID or documents sent by email may look official but they are not.
How to protect yourself and your family!
- If you receive a questionable call, hang up, and report the call to our Office of the Inspector General.
- Don’t return unknown calls.
- Ask someone you trust for advice before making any large purchase or financial decision.
- Don’t be embarrassed to report if you shared personal financial information or suffered a financial loss.
- Learn more at oig.ssa.gov/scam.
- Share this information with friends and family.
Learn more about fraud prevention and reporting at https://www.ssa.gov/fraud/.