Fraud, Guest Bloggers, Office of the Inspector General

Inspector General Warns Public about Phone Calls from OIG “Imposters”

March 6, 2017 • By

woman looking at cell phone The Acting Inspector General of Social Security, Gale Stallworth Stone, is warning citizens about a nationwide telephone “imposter phishing” scheme. The Social Security Administration (SSA) and its Office of the Inspector General (OIG) have received several reports from citizens across the country about persons receiving phone calls from individuals posing as OIG investigators. The caller indicates an issue exists pertaining to the person’s Social Security account or Social Security number (SSN) and directs the person call a non-SSA telephone number to address the issue.

The reports indicate the calls include a recording from a caller stating she is “Nancy Jones,” an “officer with the Inspector General of Social Security.” The recording goes on to say the person’s Social Security account, SSN, and/or benefits are suspended, and that he or she should call 806-680-2373 to resolve the issue. Citizens should be aware that the scheme’s details may vary; however, citizens should avoid calling the number provided, as the unknown caller might attempt to acquire personal information.

OIG investigators occasionally contact citizens by telephone for investigative purposes, but they will not request sensitive personal information from a citizen over the phone. If a person receives a similar suspicious call from someone alleging to be from the OIG, citizens may report that information to the OIG at 1-800-269-0271 or online via https://oig.ssa.gov/report.

Acting Inspector General Stone said, “This phishing scheme is targeting unsuspecting persons for the purpose of Social Security benefit theft or identity theft.” She warns citizens to be cautious, and to avoid providing personal information such as your SSN or bank account numbers to unknown persons over the phone or internet unless you are certain of who is receiving it. “You must be very confident that the source is the correct business party, and that your information will be secure after you release it,” Stone said.

If a person has questions about any communication—email, letter, text or phone call—that claims to be from SSA or the OIG, please contact your local Social Security office, or call Social Security’s toll-free customer service number at 1-800-772-1213, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, to verify its legitimacy. (Those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can call Social Security’s TTY number at 1-800-325-0778.)


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About the Author

Andrew Cannarsa, OIG Communications Director

Andrew Cannarsa, OIG Communications Director

Andrew Cannarsa, OIG Communications Director

Comments

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  1. Patricia Franklin

    +14158988938 this number called to say SSAN had been suspended

    Reply
  2. anthony aakhus

    i ansered my cell phone to a recording telling me to call a number the call came from 833 550 0558 about some drug crime involving my ssn

    Reply
  3. John Bartolo

    received a call claiming that my social security number is about to be suspended. Told to call (972)984-7473

    Reply
  4. Jeff O'Laughlin

    I received a scam call saying the were from social security and my ssn was going to be cancelled due to fraudulent activity

    Reply
    • Kenny O., Public Affairs Specialist

      Hi, Jeff. Thank you for checking in with us. 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.

      Reply
  5. Jean P Dubins

    In the past week I have gotten 4 calls stating that my SS number has been cancelled because of fraud. Push #1 to get more information regarding this.
    Is this a Scam? I have not responded.

    Reply
    • Kenny O., Public Affairs Specialist

      Hi, Jean. Thank you for checking in with us. 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.

      Reply
  6. William Gambrell

    April 23, 2020 Received call from Adam Phillips, ID# 10865, phone number 615-280-9439, claiming to be with SSA working with Medicare. I asked if was with Medicare and again said was working with Medicare, started to ask about my pain had. I stopped him and asked where he received this information. I reminded him of the HIPPA act and wanted to know who signed a release to give him that information, hung up on me.

    Reply
  7. سرو دیتا

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  8. Charles S. Gardner

    CAN I APPLY FOR NEW SSAN?

    Reply
    • Ann C., Public Affairs Specialist

      Hi, Charles. We may be able to assist with a new card request based on available staff and office operating status. People in need of a Social Security number should call their local office for assistance. Look for the general inquiry telephone number under Show Additional Office Information. We hope this helps.

      Reply
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  10. Sharry Sharratt

    I have been contacted by a person who’s # is from Grand Rapids & he said a person down in Texas is using my SS # for fraud He wanted my SS # I didn’t give it!

    Reply
    • Vonda VanTil, Public Affairs Specialist

      Thanks for letting us know, Sharry. 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.

      Reply

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