We get calls from clients indicating they have received a call from Social Security and are not sure if it is a Social Security scam call.
How to Identify a Social Security Scam Call
The first clue is an unsolicited call. Social Security will call you under certain circumstances, such as you have requested a call back, are filing for disability benefits or are undergoing a disability review. SSA employees will identify themselves.
The Social Security Administration will NEVER:
- Call to threaten you with arrest or legal action if you don’t pay a debt, fine or fee.
- Tell you that your Social Security number has been suspended or offer to increase your benefits or resolve purported identity theft problems in exchange for payment.
- Require payment via retail gift cards, prepaid debit cards, wire transfers, or internet currency, such as Bitcoin or by mailing cash.
- Demand secrecy in handling the problem and that you refrain from telling your friends, family or bank about the call.
- Text you unsolicited to tell you about a problem with your Social Security number or benefits.
- Email you attached documents containing your personally identifiable information.
How to Protect Yourself from a Social Security Scam Call
There are things you can do to protect yourself and help put a stop to the perpetrators. Do not give personally identifiable information over the phone or by email. If the caller threatens you, hang up.
If you receive a suspicious call from someone alleging to be from Social Security, hang up, and then report details of the call to the Office of the Inspector General at https://oig.ssa.gov.