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. Aubrey T.

    I’m trying to get my Social Security number

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Aubrey, thank you for using our blog. First, realize you may not need a replacement card. You will rarely need to show it. Knowing your Social Security number is what is important. However, if you must get a replacement card, you may be able to apply online. Visit our Social Security Number and Card page to learn how. If you cannot request a replacement card online, call your local office and request that we mail you an SSN printout instead of a replacement Social Security card. Unfortunately, we are unable to process replacement Social Security card requests by phone at this time.

  2. Terry L.

    I need my kids and I social security card please and thank you

  3. Paula Z.

    Please provide details regarding the Direct Express Card and what I should know about its benefits and other information.

    Also, should I go to my Social Security Office for specific details??

    Thank You Kindly,

  4. Basilia R.

    quiero hacer Saber que yo no he nombrado a nadie,recibi una carta donde menciona ,Jacqueline Melissa nebbia yo no conosco a esa persona,no se quien es.y yo no nesecito a nadie que me represented. Gracias. Basilia Ramos

  5. Terrance A.

    I was robbed and my social security card was taken. Someone is trying to use it to open credit account.

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Terrance, thanks for using our blog. Generally, identity theft issues are handled by the Federal Trade Commission. Visit http://www.identitytheft.gov to report identity theft and get a recovery plan or call 1-877-IDTHEFT (1-877-438-4338).

      Visit our Frequently Asked Questions web page for details on what you can do if you think someone is using your Social Security number.

  6. Anonymous

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  7. Norma A.

    Cómo puedo bloquear los seguro social de mis 2 hijos para que nadie los use como dependientes

  8. Candice R.

    I have gotten several calls, stating it’s from an officer of the SS department and my # has been fraudulently used. I know these are fake robot calls. The 2 # I have blocked are 909-883=8362 and 909882-9241

    • Vonda V.

      Thanks for letting us know, Candice. 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.

  9. belinda b.

    I am aware of a business that has operated illegally
    For the last 5 years or more. I was friends with William
    Richardson and joy leanne carte, until 2 years ago.
    He has operated his asphalt business, without a current contractors license, bonds, or workmans comp.
    Joy prints out look alike tags, for any equipment used
    For that particular job. It’s not right. Noone even
    Investigates them. They should have to have everything any legitamate business has. Now, Bill
    Is going to retire, and receive money he is not entitled
    To. I’m tired of them getting away with fraud.
    Meanwhile, there others who follow all of the guidelines. 206 s. Hughes ave.
    Fresno-california. 559-442-4568-land line
    559-351-1201-william richardson
    559-217-6088-joy carte
    Someone needs to check into this matter. I know its
    Just my word against theirs, but I cant go through the
    Rest of my life not saying anything. You may contact
    Me at anytime, or investigate me.
    Belinda gail baker

  10. Glen C.

    Hi my name is Glen Carlton King my payee name is Annette King she is my mother for last 3 month’s I’ve only been receiving 400 to 450 of my ssi money I do not live with her n she has not been giving me the rest of my money I also believe I have already received my stimulus check n she has not will not give me any of my money because of that I have no where to go n im homeless im no longer in the same state with her anymore n I would l8ke yo get my check myself so I can benefit like I should with my income she keeps paying her bills n getting things she wants for herself with my money please call me at 6817536032 or 3046013357 or email me at lilithfaith6@gmail.com will someone please help me

    • Vonda V.

      Thank you for using our blog to ask your question, Glen. If you have a representative payee because of a physical or mental disability and you want to become your own payee, you must show Social Security that you are now mentally and physically able to handle your money yourself. You could provide: A doctor’s statement that there has been a change in your condition and the doctor believes you are able to care for yourself; or an official copy of a court order saying that the court believes that you can take care of yourself; or other evidence that shows your ability to take care of yourself.

      To make a representative payee change, you will need to call your local Social Security office . Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

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