Beware of Social Security Scams

Social Security phone scams are the #1 type of fraud reported to the Federal Trade Commission and Social Security. Over the past year, these scams—misleading victims into making cash or gift card payments to avoid arrest for Social Security number problems—have skyrocketed. Social Security encourages you to use the new online form to report Social Security phone scams to disrupt the scammers and help us reduce this type of fraud, and reduce the number of victims.

“We are taking action to raise awareness and prevent scammers from harming Americans,” said Andrew Saul, Commissioner of Social Security. “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 employees will occasionally contact you by telephone or mail for business purposes if you have ongoing business with the agency. However, Social Security employees will not:

  • Tell you that your Social Security number has been suspended.
  • Contact you to demand an immediate payment.
  • Ask you for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • Require a specific means of debt repayment, like a prepaid debit card, a retail gift card, or cash.
  • Demand that you pay a Social Security debt without the ability to appeal the amount you owe.
  • Promise a Social Security benefit approval, or increase, in exchange for information or money.

Remember that Social Security employees will never threaten you. If there’s a problem with your Social Security record, Social Security will mail you a letter. If Social Security needs you to submit payments, the agency will provide instructions in the letter, including options to make those payments

“Awareness is our best hope to thwart the scammers,” said Gail Ennis, Inspector General for Social Security. “Tell your friends and family about them and report them to us when you receive them, but most importantly, just hang up and ignore the calls.”

You can learn more on our press release.

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266 thoughts on “Beware of Social Security Scams

  1. Someone phoning from 646 760 8040 saying my ss number is going to be shut down. As soon as you call back they ask for personal information and when you say no, they hang up.

  2. I had someone from the social security office call Me reporting that My social security number was placed on hold because of suspicious activity. My name is Christopher Allen Neeley. they said that My Social Security number had been used down in Texas and I live clear up in Northern Indiana and my liscense is currently under a Hubitual Traffic Violation statis and a car had been reported to be rented under My Social Security number which is not the case. There was clearly an error. In conclusion i was born on November 10, 1979 in Goshen Hospital located in Goshen, Indiana 46526.

  3. I received a telephone call from someone who claimed that they were calling from the Social Security Office about my SS Number. And to call them back at 1 (866) 448-9532 to resolve this issue and case file.

    • Hi, Dorinda. Thanks for letting us know. Generally, we will only contact you if you have requested a call or have ongoing business with us. Recently, scams—misleading victims into making cash or gift card payments to avoid arrest for Social Security number problems—have skyrocketed. Our employees will never threaten you for information or promise a benefit in exchange for personal information or money.

      If you receive a suspicious call like this: 1) Hang up. 2) Do not provide personal information, money, or retail gift cards. 3) Report suspicious calls here. For more information on how to protect yourself, check out our Frequently Asked Questions. We hope this helps.

  4. I RECEIVED A CALL TODAY STATING THAT THEY WERE FROM MEDICARE AND WANTED TO ASK ME ABOUT MY PART B. THEY CALLED ME BY MY FIRST NAME. I DID NOT FEEL RIGHT ABOUT THIS CALLER SO I STARTED TO ASK THEM QUESTION AND THEY HUNG UP. THEIR NUMBER IS 1-609-2693102 FROM PLAINSBORO NJ. WHEN I CALLED THIS NUMBER BACK I WAS TOLD THAT IT WAS NO LONGER IN SERVICE.I BELIEVE THAT THIS WAS A SCAM.

  5. Is 866-226-2306 a legitamite SS number? I recently applied for my retirement benefits and was asked to call that number to get more information. I was told this might happen but I cannot tell if this is SS calling or not! HELP

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