Fake calls about your SSN

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The FTC is getting reports about people pretending to be from the Social Security Administration (SSA) who are trying to get your Social Security number and even your money. In one version of the scam, the caller says your Social Security number has been linked to a crime (often, he says it happened in Texas) involving drugs or sending money out of the country illegally. He then says your Social is blocked – but he might ask you for a fee to reactivate it, or to get a new number. And he will ask you to confirm your Social Security number.

In other variations, he says that somebody used your Social Security number to apply for credit cards, and you could lose your benefits. Or he might warn you that your bank account is about to be seized, that you need to withdraw your money, and that he’ll tell you how to keep it safe.

But all of these are scams. Here’s what you need to know:

  • The SSA will never (ever) call and ask for your Social Security number. It won’t ask you to pay anything. And it won’t call to threaten your benefits.
  • Your caller ID might show the SSA’s real phone number (1-800-772-1213), but that’s not the real SSA calling. Computers make it easy to show any number on caller ID. You can’t trust what you see there.
  • Never give your Social Security number to anyone who contacts you. Don’t confirm the last 4 digits. And don’t give a bank account or credit card number – ever – to anybody who contacts you asking for it.
  • Remember that anyone who tells you to wire money, pay with a gift card, or send cash is a scammer. Always. No matter who they say they are.

If you’re worried about a call from someone who claims to be from the Social Security Administration, get off the phone. Then call the real SSA at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). If you’ve spotted a scam, then tell the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint.

Tagged with: government, imposter
Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Comments

-- Your caller ID might show the SSA’s real phone number (1-800-772-1213), but that’s not the real SSA calling. Computers make it easy to show any number on caller ID. You can’t trust what you see there.

Why did the phone companies implement a system that is so easily spoofed? I get 10 calls a day from scammers, none of which can be traced back to their phone number due to this problem. I almost wish they'd just eliminate caller-id entirely, let the dust settle, and then implement a secure system.

Agree 100%

I also agree 100%. Between 40 and 50% of incoming calls are spoofed or robocalls.

I bought my own VOIP and call blocker roughly two years ago and I've gotten to the point where if the incoming call is unfamiliar or unknown to me I never answer - I just block it.

I agree 100%, unfortunately, there are financial and other companies who will not give credit without caller id..ironic.

Agree. The phone service taxes the living daylights out of us and can stop the fraud phone numbers on caller ID.
PATHETIC

Jan 13 about 12:30 (noon) I received a call telling me that my SS number will be discontinued if I don't call 847-737-7751. I live in Montpelier, Vermont. I don't think my SS number can be discontinued for any reason so I checked out the number. Thank you for your information.

I just received a call 12/17/18. I am in process of guardianship of my mother so this may be how they got my phone number through the cook county court system. I did not give any information, but took down their number to call them back (which I did not)
The spoof number is 410-413-3782.
BTW-the call received was very broken up, and I could tell loud background noise as if a very busy call center.

I got one indicating an issue with SSI. No one person was mentioned so no idea who on the household was needed to 'call back'.

This came from 210-880-3339.

Most likely spoofed anyway as it doesn't come up as belonging to any 'business'.

Thank you for this important information!! There are so many crooks out there, and so many vulnerable Senior citizens who rely on their Social Security monthly checks to live on that could easily fall for this horrible scam. Most of the scammer calls I've received come from Oriental countries,or at least their voices suggest that's where they're from. I keep them talking, like I believe what their telling me, so I can get their name, phone number, as much info on them as possible. Even though I know it's all erroneous, the FTC has said it helps to track them down.

Got a poorly pre-recorded call yesterday with above mentioned scam appearing to come from China, phone number came in as +86 67521019.

A new scam I've received by email twice in the last two weeks: Sender claims he/she has obtained my password and has read all my emails and has access to all web sites that I have "visited," including dozens of pornographic sites. Sender threatens to reveal to my email recipients that I am a porno addict and demands that I pay a ransom of $700+ in bitcoins. The sender also explains what bitcoins are, and how to transfer them to him/her.
I have deleted both emails without responding. So far I've seen no evidence that the sender has followed through with his/her threat. My advice is, if a similar email is received, do not reply.

I have gotten a call, AND an e-mail, asking for the last 4 digits of my social within the last month. I refused them since there was NOTHING I'd done in years that required my SSN. The result was some very vicious e-mails and one call that indicated the SS Office as the caller in the CID. I did not answer it, but what I did do was wait past the first ring, answered, and before the second ring, hung up, and never received another such call but there's still time since that was only a week or so ago.
I parsed the e-mail, threw out the obfuscations, detected the actual sender, and filed a complaint immediately.

Now, if the stupid captcha let's me thru, I'll send this. Otherwise as so often happens I never make it through it.

Yes I received a FAKE CALL SSN pre-recorded . The pre-recorded message said some has been my SSN . They asked me to to call a toll free number . I hung up area code 7XX . DONOT respond to Social Security Administration will never call you .

I received this call saying my ssi number had been suspended

I received a cell call today from 1 847-737-7751 claiming to be social security and stating that there has been fraud suspected on my account and to contact you at the number above. It was a recorded message, not a real person. It asked me to call the number above to discuss the issue. I did not call back.

I received the same message last week in Georgia. Just hung up and added the number to my auto reject list, but they just called from another number with the same message.

I received a phone call this morning, they told me the same thing, fraudulent activity on my Social Security Account, they wanted me to call back. I did not.

I had called and told the SSA about call I got on my Cell their number but I knew it wasn't them , but I wanted to inform them about this but I was sure they may have already knew and , she asked all the normal questions one would .. but she said that it was not them which I knew, cause they do not contact you on your cell phone but I just wanted to give them the information if someone else hadn't already callrd them and told them ,that someone was using there #.. I wish these lowlife would get a life already. Thank you FTC always being up 2 date on everything and so fast.. I know you can't always do so much about it but you do what you can ,cause they move so fast one to the next one....

How timely - I received this call yesterday from 325-218-0234.

2 suggestions:
1-can the FTC ask all phone providers to better manage ID; we pay a monthly fee for it, but cannot trust what is shown???..We got calls with so-called US Gov, or out of area; we know these were scams bec of the accent and they treat us if we do not pay... we ignored all.
2- Can the FTC work with Captcha to improve the quality of pics??? some are too dark, or blurred, or to small to see, for seniors;. my old relatives ( 70yo+) gave up after 3 times.
Thanks and Happy holidays

I would like to see the FTC crack down on US business that still continue to ask for social security number for no reason. Yesterday at a doctor's office, I was asked for my SS number. (not just the last 4). I asked why and they said "it's for the insurance company". I replied that the doctor's office already has my insurance number and a copy of the card. So I have to assume this is to make it easier for the doctor's office to put a bad debt mark on my credit report if I fail to pay the bill. I told them I did not give out that info. Remember, only entities that pay you money and must report to the IRS can ask for your SS number. No one else has the right to this information.

It's good to be cautious about sharing your Social Security number. But, you didn't list all the entities that can ask for your Social Security number.

Your employer and financial institutions need your SSN for wage and tax reporting purposes. A business may ask for your SSN so they can check your credit when you apply for a loan, rent an apartment, sign up for utility service, or purchase a mobile phone. You need to give your SSN when you request your free annual credit report, and place a credit freeze.

It's good to be cautious about sharing your Social Security number. But, you didn't list all the entities that can ask for your Social Security number.

Your employer and financial institutions need your SSN for wage and tax reporting purposes. A business may ask for your SSN so they can check your credit when you apply for a loan, rent an apartment, sign up for utility service, or purchase a mobile phone. You need to give your SSN when you request your free annual credit report, and place a credit freeze.

It's good to be cautious about sharing your Social Security number. But, you didn't list all the entities that can ask for your Social Security number.

Your employer and financial institutions need your SSN for wage and tax reporting purposes. A business may ask for your SSN so they can check your credit when you apply for a loan, rent an apartment, sign up for utility service, or purchase a mobile phone. You need to give your SSN when you request your free annual credit report, and place a credit freeze.

Many insurance companies require doctor's offices to use your social security number as a means of proving you are a patient there. Without that id confirmation, they will reject the claim, then the doctors office will end up having to bill you for the full fee, which will make most people angry at the doctor and their staff. It's an ugly cycle. Most doctors don't want to keep the massive amount of information they are required by federal and state regulations. But, if they want to practice and get paid for their work, they have to acquire the information, and put up with angry people who don't want to understand the real reason for gathering the information.

I got a call with that exact scam. The perpetrators impersonate federal officers and have the audacity to ask you if you are going to cooperate with their investigation or they should proceed charging you of all kinds of crimes. They even offer names and badge numbers, which of course cannot be verified.

I have gotten at least three calls per day all month. So far. I just pick it up, look at the usual "SSI" showing who the caller is, and set it down and they hang up pretty quick. Why would I want to talk to anyone from Social Security anyway!?!

Federal Government will never call you on the phone. I like the IRS calling. I tell them I’m retired IRS agent and ask where they are. Maybe we know some of the same people. They always hang up for some reason.

I informed the Residents of our Retirement Community a Long time ago, that the Government Will NOT make Initial Contact with them By phone, Only by Postal Service.. They may themselves, set up any future Phone Contact, if Offered...

Caller ID shows 1-800-772-1213... And the pre-recorded message says that my SS is going to be suspended due to suspicious activity and to call 920-268-4462.
3 calls received today already

Use caller ID. Don't answer a number that you don't recognize. If it's legit, they will leave a message. If they do leave a message,
do a google search on numbers before even calling them back. I don't take the time to even talk to them. If the message is garbled, I delete it.

Got a phone call today and yesterday and the day before telling me my ss# had been used for fraudulent activity and if I didn't verify my ss# with them they would go ahead and send the case in for prosecution. Laughed and told them to go ahead and told them I knew they were bogus. Called me a not very nice name. So tired of these calls.

I tried to sign up online, was told I must contact Experian Credit Agency as they get their info form them! REALLY? you trust an agency that had no less then 40 errors on my report? An address two decades old and no work history since I was in my 30s!? That's frightening. * And I did get a call ( from SSA?) saying there was an error on my app so I had to call them.. How do I know that wasn't fraudulent?

Go into the SSA office. They can create the online account for you . They’ll give you an activation code to set up your username and password at home.

Rcvd a VM from 903-767-4666 with the SS scam on my home #. Not calling back, hope they are caught.

Scam call from 847-737-7751 today. Recorded message telling me that my SS# had been suspended due to suspected illegal activity and that my assets were in jeopardy. Gave me a number to call back. DON'T DO IT!

I received this scam call and inwas told my ssn is used somewhere in texas for illegal actions.
Afterwards i kept receiving weird phone calls that i did not answer. The last phone call was from 118007721219. All the weird numbers i get start with 1180077

Today 3/20/2019 I got the scam call message on my cell phone saying something very broken up but I could make out ...before we take legal action...."
So I call the number that showed on Caller ID
I get a female says a fake name & badge number then tells me
"Your SS number was used in a crime in Texas. We are going to suspend it." By now I have realized this is all a Total Scam-so I push back a little- I tell her it is a "California Social Security Number" so how could it possibly be used in Texas?" This seems to confuse her & she hangs up!

I received this call numerous times and just hung up. Now I'm getting calls saying that Microsoft is threatening to shut down my computer. All are robot calls...They're fake. I just hang up. The one from Microsoft also lists my name on caller ID! I don't call myself.

THIS HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR NORE THEN 40 YEARS AND THE GOVERMENT STILL CAN NOT DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT VERY SAD
WHAT ARE WE PAYING TAXS FOR
MABYE ONE DAY.

I was called about three times within two or three months the caller claimed that my SSN was used in a crime in California and New York buying drugs.
Next they called and stated that I would have to go to the SS office to get another SSN. Then I was threatened to contact them immediately that is something wrong with my SSN.

I got a call about 2 months ago in the same manner. It was late Sunday evening and I saw the Medicaid number. Knew it was weird, so I let it go to answering service. They said they needed to speak with me immediately and said they'd call back with important information about my service being cancelled. Cancelled? they attempted to call but I would not answer and again, let it go to answer service. They never left a message on the second call. So the next day I called the Medicaid Office myself and played the message back to them so they could hear it. The Agent told me that I was onpoint in not answering and keeping the recording on. Without question a scammer and took down the information from the call, time and date. Never heard of any govt office open after 8pm and just goes to show they will try you if you let them. Ive learned to keep any calls and report it as soon as possible. Sad people will not get out and work like everybody else...

Received that call with the phone ID of the SS # twice last week. When I heard "Texas" I did hang up. After the 2nd time I called SS to report it and to ask for an appointment to answer several questions. The nice lady gave me a phone appointment for 12/6/18 at 11 am. At 10:50 am that day I received a call with the ID "Private Number". Thinking that it would be a person I know who does that and I don't want to have contact with plus to keep the line open for the SS call, I didn't answer the phone. No message was left. 11:00 am another call "Private Number". Again I didn't answer and again there was no message left. No other call after that. Well, now I am wondering if SS calls back with a hidden ID. Does anyone know?

I have received 3 messages from this scam. I did not respond. I saw a report on the news where a woman did fall for it and lost a lot of money.

Received a call from 214-329-9124 out of Dallas, Texas. It states there are legal enforcement actions filed on my SS number for fraudulent activities. Total scam.

Got the same scam, called the house 4 times one day with recorded message. Left a number to call back Texas
281-845-2839, “Officer Gonzalez” answered, of course had my first and last name, as they must have caller ID, told me my SSN being used etc....told him we ll be reporting him to the FCC.

Just got one that left a recorded robotic message about an enforcement action by the US Treasury against my Social Security number. Was almost tempted to call back from my actual government line to mess with them, but will leave that to the pros.

This has also happened to me today ( 12/13/2018. When I asked why was the other people in the background saying the same exact words to other people he couldn't answer that, then I told him I would contact the social security office myself. He got upset said fine and hung up the phone. I never give my social security number out over the phone

received all 12/13/18 at 2:16 PM saying my social used in numerous fraudulent activity and is suspended. I do not and did not respond to this and made a complaint to the social security admin IG office with the calling number 847-737-7751. Above that on the caller ID was V21316161600047. how many people will be falling for this and actually call them back. NOT ME!

I receive messenger daily from a guy who says he is stuck in Nigeria ask for money

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