Frauds & Scams, Guest Bloggers

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

March 6, 2017 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: August 19, 2021

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

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


  1. Turalcan M.

  2. Keith M.

    I do not have time for this I have seen people do there dirt and when the real authority comes around they disappear and said we are your friends if you want to know you will never know these people know when the authority comes out this is point less I have report numerous of times it is a doctor name Dr. Balu do work for MedStar Union Memorial hospital trying to play Psy. games I know that they practice Islam in Secret I was on both side of the fence I know ya want me by myself and I know ya are on the next one to keep on bring me in circle.

  3. Rajesh k.

    DEAR SIR, Rajesh kumar a.m in india To me social security And Usa Entry Help please Thank you .

  4. Angie

    Who do I contact about a call claiming they are calling from social security about my disability check. I do not get a disability check . They called 3 times in a row I answered last call shows wireless caller on caller ID .

  5. Marshall

    Can I just say what a relief to find somebody who really knows what theyre talking about on the net. You unquestionably know the best way to bring an issue to light and make it critical. Additional folks need to read this and have an understanding of this side of the story. I cant think youre not far more popular simply because you definitely have the gift.

  6. C. F.

    I am in the process of starting a disability claim. I went to an attorney that I chose locally. Of course they need my social security number and date of birth, but why do they need my mother’s maiden name?

    • azure

      Because if the lawyer calls SSA to get any information about you/your SS disability claim, the SSA employee will want alot of identifying information about you. Usually name, SSN#, address, date of birth, mother’s maiden name, and possibly where you were born.

      • Ronnie B.

        It is a crying shame that a needy person should have to go to the cost of hiring a lawyer to make a disability claim.

        The US SS Dept. treats needy Americans as though they were thieves instead of expediting their claims and having them set up inside 24 hours as is the case in the UK.

        I speak from experience.

  7. nwgrammy

    I have call waiting that pops up on my tv screen and pc monitor besides my phone. If I do not know the name or # I will not answer…saves me a lot of agravation.

  8. Deanne

    We have received such calls on our landline and it is obvious that they are just phishing for personal information. We now don’t even answer calls on our landline. Friends and family know to reach us on our cell phones.

    My question to the Social Security Administration is what are they doing about these complaints? Publicly traded companies have us forward phishing emails and phone numbers to their fraud department so that they can put a stop to these crooks. With governmental agencies, whether it is the SSA, IRS, Medicare, etc., it is HARD to find a fraud abuse email address! The only one that I can easily find is the Post Office. Informing the public about these calls is one step, but what about putting a stop to these crooks?!?

    • Marc

      No, it’s not difficult at all. In fact, this very article in no less than THREE places tells you what number to call and what Web address to go to. You also have the CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) to report these and any other scams to, as well as the FTC’S scam line, the FCC’s scam line, the IRS, any governmental agency really, and the Consumer Protection arm of the Attorney General’s office. Thete, you can even file a complaint online and they’ll handle it all for you, even scams from those Indian “computer repair” outfits. Unfortunately however, the CFPB is currently on the chopping block to be dismantled by the Trump administration; Congress has already introduced a bill to eliminate this valuable consumer protection resource set up by President Obama that provides an avenue of recourse for victims of scam, fraud, and nefarious business practices, in addition to free financial education and materials designed to inform and educate the consumer. (One guess why the current Congress and administration want to get rid of any agency that empowers and/ educates consumers about their rights and how to be more financially savvy . . .) But utilize all the hundreds of (what’s left) free online and print resources our government has made available to us for years while you still can. If you can get to this website and figure out how to post complaints about your government and Soxial Security despite all the good things it does for all of us, you should certainly be able to figure out how to Google or surf your way to the literally thousands of resources available. FYI, you can also find free information on almost any topic you can think of to make life easier from every STATE college in the country (yes, courtesy of the “big, bad gubmint”) through their extension offices. They offer in person and online classes and seminars, online and print materials, and even field trips and excursions about everything, from gardening to pet care to first aid to finance to sewing, cooking and nutrition, patenting, and anything else you can think of, all for now cost to you. Too bad this administration is also shutting down the Department of Education though, not only the public schools from preschool through high school, but colleges, too. Their vision is only private schools, – just like it was waaay back hundreds of years ago, when no one but the rich could read or get an education. That’s the reason Thomas Jefferson and others instituted universal, equal, free public education for every single child in this country; rich or poor. He said you can never have freedom, equality, or opportunity without an equal education. But since the Reagan era, the Republicans have slashed education funding relentlessly, causing it to fall below what it had always been, then decrying our public education system as a “failure” and “substandard.” And everyone laps it up. These past decades people have bought into this “smaller government” rhetoric which the Republican party has espoused since before WWII, jumping on the bandwagon of cut, cut, cut. Well, now they’re getting it, as everything the government has built for all the people is steadily being shut down, disbanded, dissolved, eliminated, and repealed. Be careful what you wish for – by the end of this year, we will not be able to recognize this country as the same one we’ve lived in all of our lives. And the changes are most definitely NOT positive ones. God help us all.

      • PJ

        Yes, we the people need to understand what is happening to our democracy. Our rights and our government are on the chopping block. It has already been several years of a Republican-controlled Congress cutting the budget for our – emphasis OUR – programs, including Social Security Administration. To answer the question from the previous post by Dianne, yes, there are federal regulatory investigative personnel (OIG, etc) and yes, they should be putting a stop to this fraud, but they are severely underfunded. Just like the SSA, IRS (which can’t begin to attack the tax fraud problems), and the State Department, another notable example.
        The job of government is to serve and protect the people, at least here in America, but we now have in power a well-organized group backed by big money who have an extreme agenda to dismantle that. I don’t mean to get too ideological, sorry, but agree with the above post that we are going to suffer greatly individually and as a country if we do not recognize this. They will take away everything they can, and are in the process of doing it now. It’s a tragedy, a real one. The posters above are right to expect our government agencies and personnel to protect us, but they have to have the resources to do so, and leadership that cares about the American people and democracy.
        Thank you Marc for quoting Jefferson. Back when we went to public school, we actually were taught history!

    • azure

      There’s an e-mail address/link listed on the page you can use to report a phishing scam.

      link to an IRS webpage re: phishing scams, etc., that provides an e-mail address to report IRS-related phishing scams to:

    • R.F.

      We understand your concern, and ask that if a person receives a suspicious call from someone alleging to be from the OIG, to please report that information to the OIG at 1-800-269-0271 or online via Thanks!

    • Ronnie B.

      If I am sespicious, and ZI am often extremely suspicious, then I ask them whether their Mommas know hopw they make their livings and does she kow you are a stinking crook. They always hang up.

  9. Terry L.

    I have not received an IRS but have received similar scams. I tell the I need some information: Your name, direct phone number, Supervisor’s name & phone, his/her SSA employee number. It has NEVER gotten that far before they hang up.

  10. Michael

    When I receive these calls I let them begin, then I interrupt them and say, “someone is at my door. Hold on for a second and I’ll come back – I want to hear more about this.”

    It’s fun to see how long they wait before hanging up!

    • DEW

      Great idea. I tell them the person is upstairs can I put you on hold

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