Frauds & Scams

How You Can Help Social Security Protect Others

August 8, 2019 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: August 19, 2021

" "Scams have become an unfortunate part of doing business online or via phone. Many people have received a call or voicemail from someone warning them that their Social Security number or benefits are suspended due to suspicious activity. It’s an alarming scam and one we must help people identify so that they do not become the next victim.

We, at Social Security, are serious about protecting the information entrusted to us. In the past year, we’ve posted a series of blogs about how our beneficiaries can protect their information from scammers and what to do when they receive a call from someone pretending to be us.

We are teaming up with other government agencies and organizations to help spread these tips. Most recently, we worked with the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to create a new fraud prevention placemat to help you avoid Social Security scams. We’ve also worked with the Administration for Community Living and the Office of the Inspector General to develop and publish educational resources to help the public spot these schemes and avoid becoming victims themselves. The resources include a video, factsheets, and materials on how we can protect the elderly from fraud.

These resources are free and easily shareable. You can find the video about how you can help Social Security protect your information on our website. You can download the factsheet Protecting Your Information by visiting the Office of the Inspector General’s website. You can also check out the National Center on Elder Abuse for materials about preventing the financial exploitation of our older citizens.

We believe that knowing how to tell the difference between a scam and a genuine call from Social Security is important. You can help us protect the people you serve. These are some things to remember:

  • Don’t answer calls from numbers you don’t recognize.
  • Never give out personal information such as your account numbers, passwords, Social Security number, mother’s maiden name, or other identifying information if a call seems suspicious.
  • Government employees will not threaten to take away benefits or ask for money or personal information to protect your Social Security card or benefits.
  • If you receive a call from someone asking for your Social Security number, bank account number, or credit card information, don’t engage this caller. Instead, hang up and report that information to the Office of Inspector General via their online fraud-reporting form. You should also report these calls to the Federal Trade Commission.

Scammers are hard at work every day. Together, we can help safeguard the American public. Please help us spread the word.

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About the Author

Darlynda Bogle, Assistant Deputy Commissioner

Darlynda Bogle, Assistant Deputy Commissioner


  1. Aadesh P.

    Scammers are playing with our emotions. Be it greed (gifts), threats to our belongings (money). So if anybody calls claiming an officer from concern department and trying to create urgency to take you any action then that is surely a scam. Avoid those calls –

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    Thanks for sharing!

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  8. mary b.

    I’m not sure who will receive this or if it will do any good I’m an American been here all my life working I’ve been blessed with a son who has several mental illness I live in a town with a broken system I supply my son with a home meds and financial help love and support I’ve worked for 3 years trying to get help after I began my journey I was denied help for him I was to late in my delivery of papers to I was given a date by mental health case worker but I was to late I’m starting the process over but it saddens me I’ve got a beautiful 30 year old son fighting for his ability to stay in this world we do not look for handouts we just wanted to have him taking care of because of my health so many people using the system but an American working family is turned down

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Mary. We are sorry to hear about your son’s condition and your situation. You may be eligible to receive social services from the state in which you live. These services include Medicaid, free meals, housekeeping help, transportation or help with other problems. To find out whether you may qualify and if you need to file a separate application call the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services at 1-800-633-4227 (TTY, 1-877-486-2048). You also can get information about services in your area from your state or local social services or welfare office. We hope this helps.

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  10. mik r.

    Hello there,
    This is such a great article, Although I found this article a little mysterious.
    Keep sharing more such blogs like this in the near future.
    Thank you..!

Comments are closed.