Disability, Frauds & Scams, General, Retirement, Survivors

Social Security Takes Fraud Seriously

June 15, 2015 • By

Reading Time: 1 Minute

Last Updated: August 19, 2021

An identity thief holds a Social Security card in front of a keyboardOne out of five Americans receives benefits from Social Security, including elderly retirees, people with severe illnesses, and widows and children of deceased wage earners.

With so many of our country’s most vulnerable citizens depending on us, we take our responsibility of providing them with a measure of financial security seriously.

One way we do that is by making a priority our many efforts to pursue those who would cheat the system and take money away from those who need it most.

The agency’s benefit programs are far-reaching and complex, which means that preventing, detecting, and combatting fraud, waste, and abuse is an ongoing challenge. Although we can’t prevent every instance of fraud any more than law enforcement can prevent all crimes, we aggressively investigate potential instances of fraud and pursue prosecution of those who commit it.

Our Office of Anti-Fraud Programs (OAFP) uses many tools to help predict where fraud may occur so we can identify it as quickly as possible. OAFP works alongside the Office of the Inspector General, and Disability Determination Services in the Cooperative Disability Investigation (CDI) program. CDI units investigate and resolve questions of fraud in our programs. There are stiff penalties: We seek the maximum punishment allowable under the law to restore money stolen from the American people. As a result, fraud affects only a very small percentage of our overall payments.

You can help protect your investment in Social Security. Take time to learn all the facts on how we work to prevent fraud. Remember, if you suspect fraud, report it or call the fraud hotline at 1-800-269-0271.

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About the Author

Phil Gambino, Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Communications

Assistant Deputy Commissioner for Communications


  1. Beverly C.

    I live in Blair county Pennsylvania done rent rebate for quite a few years now and nothing has changed for me because I’m disabled there are hundreds of people in Altoona Pennsylvania did not receive the rent rebate for 2018 I want to know how we can go about getting our money that’s fair

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  3. Daniel H.

    So I went up to our local SS office to see why I hadn’t gotten my checks in the mail for the months of April and May of 2019 and they said that they were already cashed, and that my signature was signed to them, but It wasn’t me . They told me to ask my parents but when I did they just denied that it was them. I need help.

  4. John L.

    I’m reporting a lady I’m Mississippi, named Roslyn Jones. I currently pay her $638.00 per month of my SSI, and a judge ordered it stands for my $340.00 per month child support obligation. She went and took an old petition to another country and state courthouses and lied to them both stating that she wasn’t receiving any support from me. Now they have garnished my SSI a second time taking now a total of&1043.00 per month leaving me only $700.00 to live off of. This is wrong, I am now about to be homeless because I can’t afford rent for me and my son that lives at home going to college. She has lied to SSI & Child support. She is money greedy. I hope she goes to jail.

  5. Charles L.

    Seems like I get poor representative service at Lynchburg Va. officeceach time I go into the office I am given a January 22 2020 my date of first SSA retirement check when the letter comes it states a different date February 26 2020 to include one letter claimed I don’t qualify for my retirement check. I now like to know why SSA representatives at Timberlake Road office continues to lie to me that is FRAUD.

  6. Nikita O.

    I just got a report on my I need basically and it’s saying that I have all these things that I do not have in certain time periods certain years and months and stuff accounts car payment loan so I’m trying to see how I can talk to somebody to let them know that that wasn’t me and to fix my name please call me back at 253-981-2243

    • A.C.

      Hi, Nikita. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., if you still need assistance. Generally, you will have a shorter wait if you call later in the day. You can also contact your local Social Security office. Just a reminder – please be cautious about posting personal information on social media. We hope this helps.

  7. Steve A.

    Gary Ariente Uses his SSID On Drugs & Gambling He’s not disabled at all he drives with no license 2 DUIs in 4 months steals his mothers retirement check after he loses his SSID Have papers trails he uses his money for escorts Gambling.. there is no reason he cant work he goes gambling all the time gets up early drugs out all nite at bars what’s wrong with this country no wonder we dont have money to help the ppl that need it!!

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  9. Neal C.

    Is there a scam for the “DSS ongoing compensation program”? Was advised to call 1-910-312-1533, gave my name and was advised I “won” $150000,00. Just had to pay $1000.00 in bitcoins and money would be delivered by fed-ex. The 1k was for security and documentation fees. Still have them (by Phone), but are asking to send bitcoins to 39Tx3tyybBKRA2T6qKJXFMeP9oX97QjRpo

    • A.C.

      Hi, Neal. 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.

  10. Concerned C.

    I am extremely concerned with the failure by the Treasury Department to actively investigate Comerica Bank even though numerous SSI Recipients have had their checks fraudulently embezzled by this bank between 2016 -present. Neither OIG (Treasury or SSA) have done anything about it (I guess poor minorities don’t count nowadays). The Treasury Department knew, or should have known about numerous complaints about SSI Funds being stolen directly from DirectExpress Accounts during the aforementioned period. But whether, as direct result of kickbacks or disregard for poor consumers, you refuse to do audits of Comerica Bank, and refuse to hold any of their corrupt staff (who’ve stolen millions from SSI Recipients), or their supervisory staff accountable for abrogating their fudiciary responsibility. I guess if you write the banking laws you don’t have to be held accountable for embezzling millions of treausry Department Funds! I think “Qui Tam” is the way to go to force a serious investigation into Comerica Bank and its Treasury Department connections! Maybe allegations of violations of the RICO ACT, along with collusion just might force the return of what is probably millions of dollars in stolen funds!

    • Alicia S.

      This is Alicia Stephens, SVP of Corporate Quality at Comerica Bank. Please give me a call at (313) 222-3435, and press option 1, then option 4. If the line is busy, please feel free to leave a voicemail and I will return your call as soon as possible.

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