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This is what a Social Security scam sounds like

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Earlier this month, we told you about a growing scam: people pretend to be from the Social Security Administration (SSA) and try to get your Social Security number or your money. That scam is now growing exponentially. To compare: in 2017, we heard from 3,200 people about SSA imposter scams, and those people reported losing nearly $210,000. So far THIS year: more than 35,000 people have reported the scam, and they tell us they’ve lost $10 million.

Here’s what one of those scam calls sound like:

Scammers are saying your Social Security number (SSN) has been suspended because of suspicious activity, or because it’s been involved in a crime. Sometimes, the scammer wants you to confirm your SSN to reactivate it. Sometimes, he’ll say your bank account is about to be seized – but he’ll tell you what to do to keep it safe. (Often, that involves putting your money on gift cards and giving him the codes – which, of course, means that your money is gone.)

Oh, and your caller ID often shows the real SSA phone number (1-800-772-1213) when these scammers call – but they’re faking that number. It’s not the real SSA calling.

Here's what to know:

  • Your Social Security number is not about to be suspended. You don’t have to verify your number to anyone who calls out of the blue. And your bank accounts are not about to be seized.
  • SSA will never call to threaten your benefits or tell you to wire money, send cash, or put money on gift cards. Anyone who tells you to do those things is a scammer. Every time.
  • The real SSA number is 1-800-772-1213, but scammers are putting that number in the caller ID. If you’re worried about what the caller says, hang up and call 1-800-772-1213 to speak to the real SSA. Even if the wait time is long, confirm with the real SSA before responding to one of these calls.
  • Never give any part of your Social Security number to anyone who contacts you. Or your bank account or credit card number.

If you get one of these calls, tell the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint.

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

Comments

Just yesterday I received a phone call from (855) 200 7051 stating that my SS had been compromised and found to be linked to criminal activity in the South Border of Texas. I was informed that SS # had been suspended or blocked and that I was suspect in a case of drug trafficking and money laundering in the thousands of dollars. Additionally, a very strange voice assisted voice from this man said that if I did not cooperate with the Social Security Administration I would be arrested and I needed to appear in front of the Magistrate to face charges lifted against me.

This was most disturbing as I truly believed that it was the Social Security Administration calling me since I had spoken to the IRS that same morning. My personal information was robbed and I have no idea what they are going to do with it in the dark web. I called my banks, credit bureaus, Social Security Administration, the Inspector General and the Police Department as well as LIFE LOCK who is now monitoring transactions linked to my SS # in the dark web. Yesterday was a horrible long day where I felt intruded upon, scared and violated. This should be considered a reportable criminal act .

I have had several of the calls that say my ss# is going to be suspended. Unfortunately, I blocked and then deleted the phone numbers without writing them down. However, my husband and I have gotten some good laughs listening to the ridiculous phrases it uses and the stilted way it talks. For me that was the give away. I never called them back. I listen to my voicemail just long enough for them to talk then I erase the voicemail. I didn't at first and that's when we got our laugh at their robot guy. Had I known about this website I would have saved the phone numbers and dates of the calls. Sorry Everyone!

Scammers use fear to extract information from people. Especially vulnerable elderly and those with conative decline. Please do not respond to these threats. Remain calm and think. The government is not going to make such threats by phone via robo calls.

I just got a call from +1(800)77-2162, claiming to be SSA. They gave me case number DMC701089. Officer Shane Marker. Employee ID. 02840175. Claiming my SSN will be suspended and that there was an arrest warrant (he gave me a number) against my SSN, due to money laundry and drug trafficking concerning El Paso Tx addresses. Our admin said this was a scam, and advise me to hang up. Be aware as they have new tactics to appear legit. Reading this I realize that SSA would never call you to report suspicious activity or to cancel your number. Don't provide any info to anyone you don't know in the phone.

I just got the same call from "office Shane Marker" @ 1-877-1213. He was trying to ask me my first and last name, so I asked him his and to spell it out bc it sounds extremely sketchy. He got frustrated I was skeptical and hung up on me. I tried to call the number back and its permanently busy.

I have gotten this same call saying the same thing and it still is happening I just got a new call today it scares the crap out of me .I know it's not real cuz I called the cops from where they say their from andwhere the warrant is for from money laundering and drug smuggling in my name supposed ,and the cops had no info they said it was a scam and told me to contact the cops up here in my bank to let them know to watch out. So everyone needs to watch it and don't trust anyone at all!!!!!

got a phone call saying they put a stop on my ss because of suspicion activadie.phone number they called from was1-800-772-8119.no I didn't answer but thought I would report this.

I just got one but listened to it. The voice of the person you could tell was not leget. What came us on the phone as to the phone number was one from my area which makes you think it is local. I just hung up after listening to all of it.

Received a call from 210361-2143 telling me that my Social Security number has been suspended due to criminal activities. This I knew was a scam just informing others

I filed for SS. A few days later they called to verify. They got me. I was unaware of any scams at the time. I gave them what they needed to complete the application. Color me mad as hell and feeling violated. Now waiting for bad things to happen.

I just got a call saying “You are receiving this prerecorded message to notify you that your social will be suspended due to illegal activity. It's very important that I hear back from you in a timely manner before we can proceed further with the status of your social and assets.”

‭This was the number (800) 777-2170‬. Avoid answering to this number.

So I just go this call, and I connected with an agent the person asked for my name to pull up my file. Ss soon as I gave them my name (my real name) they disconnected. Am I in trouble now?!

come arrest me. Bring it on!!

That's exactly what I said!! 1rst of all the guy couldn't even say my name correctly n it's not that difficult, trust me!!! Next it was 7pm n I heard like 30 telemarketers in the background n said, what r u selling, cruises 2 Mexico cause I'll take 4, n he just stopped 4 a second than I said n by the way, SSA closes @ 4:30!! He hung up on me!! But after like 15 calls, it was fun 2 mess w/ them 4 a chance. N my calls always start with 212 or Texas also. BTW my son is like super smart on the computers n he says if we call the #'s back, they may b able 2 hack our phone or computer, I don't know if they can but just in case.

Spoofing the caller ID is one thing, but in the recording, the crooks gave out an 800 number for the victim to call back. Presumably, the 800 number is answered by these crooks, yet government officials seem unable to catch these guys. How about a subpoena to the telephone company associated with the 800 call back number to see the name and address associated with it?

I just got the call today from phone # 800-777-2179, stating my social security number has been suspended. They said I will no longer receive benefits etc. I hung up shortly after that.

Got my first call from them today, didn't sound exactly like example above, but pretty close. Don't understand how or why spoof cards are legal.......makes scamming people much too easy.

I got a call from them today 09/17/19. This proves this scam is still going on. I hung up the phone since I knew this could not be real. The phone number that showed up on the caller ID was 1-643-891-1859. Just FYI, for anybody that gets a call from these.

I just received a call telling me that my S.S # has been suspended. I Googled and found this.

I get a scam call like this almost everyday and sometimes multiple times a day.
They keep switching numbers, but it is always the same sort of poorly scripted automated voice. I would love to see these scam artists behind jail for years.
One example gives a phone number with the - being stated as "to" as if it were a number range. And then they say "and I repeated" with the same number then say "thank you and have a nice day"
Another says "the issue at hand is extremely time sensitive" in the same voice and number phrasing.
It is extremely annoying.

Funny how charges will be pressed on me and I should not ignore the message. I called back last year and told them to arrest me that I was still waiting for the local cops to come. I am still waiting. These jerks are relentless on calling. And when you call their bluff and ask them about what they want you to verify they hang up. I think that the social security administration knows what your address birthday and ss# assigned to you is. I get paperwork from them periodically and they don't call asking me where to send it or even my number so they send correct info. Just tell them to go pound salt and they can take whatever action against you that they wish you will be anxiously waiting for them. And then you will wait and wait and wait for nothing to ever materialize. The SSA, IRS or any other official government office will never contact you by phone. They will contact you by mail. Sometimes certified mail and will only call you when they are returning your call which hardly ever happens. Most contacts you will have you will be contacting them not them contacting you. So don't feel threatened. Call them to call your mother Mrs No Peep and your father Porky Pig and give them the phone number to the CIA as their contact number. Peace out people. Karma will get them with our help if we waste their time give them no information at all except for cartoon character names and official phone numbers.

I got call from 832-632-4435- ( TX) Person name - Andrew Hall , Case number -SSM31768 and BA3RT65

I just received a computerized voice telling me to call 281-946-7524. 2/12/19 - 11:06 am PST

Received two voice mails in one day; one call from 1-866-404-8434 and second call from 1-866-404-8845; both calls I sent to my voice mail. Message states: "This call is from the Department of Social Security Administration the reason you have received this phone call from our department is to inform you that we just suspended your Social Security number because we found suspicious activity, so if you wan to know about this, just press one. Thank you." I'm no fool, did not call back and will report. Thank you so much for posting this blog.

Now they are calling me from a 866-755-5371 number! Same recording though.

Just received this call, thanks for posting this as I assumed it was fraud. “This is the SSN department my name is Officer Kathy Johnson and this call is regarding to your Social Security number we found some fraudulent activities under your name to know more information please call us back on this number 864-274-0291 I repeat 864-274-0291 thank you…”

I'd like to know what we can do to stop these scammers. I receive daily calls.

they upset me real bad that my blood pressure went up. I am on the do not call list &should not have got the call to begin with.

I just received this call from 707-814-4213
Geyserville, CA

I JUST got one of these also--exactly as described. And I'm normally pretty aware of these...They actually called my local PD with me on the line, so I put them on mute and called the local PD at the same time. Can these people not be caught???

They got your addresses, to send you mail. They call a little ahead of time of scheduled time with what's said a repersentive. Trying figure fake from real these days are impossiable. Especially if they have your phone number & addresses.

Is posing as a rep from SSA legal?
If not, why haven't these scammers been shut down? After all, we all know exactly how to find them.
If all we get from the FTC is a comment board, then the FTC isn't really of much use, is it?

I got a phone call to day from a guy named Edward with badge # 3156219AC claming to be from the SSA in El Paso TX telling m that I had cars on my name with drugs found in them and that I was money laundering from a few different banks and that I would have to be issued a new SS# and so on....

I received a call with a recording stating my SSN had been suspended due to suspicious activity & to press 1 to speak to a SSA representative . I pressed 1 & a woman with a middle Eastern accent ask for my SSN. I hung up. But what I find odd is that I haven't received a call prior to today & I filed a claim earlier today. So coincidence or no??

I recieved the exact same call except I didn't press one because I knew it was a scam as I have other safeguards in place that would have alerted me the second something suspicious came up with my SSN.

Scam Voice Message received today. Hi this is officer Ryan Smith calling you from the department of social security administration. The reason you have received this phone call from our department is to inform you that there is a legal enforcement action filed on your social security number for criminal activities. So when you get this message kindly call us soon as possible on our number that is 908-991-6490.

Received call today February 20 at 10:10 AM. From +1 510-470-6720. The computer generated voice said that I was suspected of Social fraud and to call back or I would be prosecuted. When I called the number the man mumbled something about Social security. There were many voices like it was a call center. I hung up.

Just got a call from them today and they left a similar voicemail only the number was 215-586-8599 and that is what they left for me to call. The caller id showed as V22010141300179. I never answer this type of caller id.

got the call from same number, glad to see your comment and didn't take any action.

Just had a scam call claiming to be social security happen to me a few minutes ago. How do we report a situation like this?

continually getting calls from 408-426-8158

Seems like I've been getting a lot of calls since last year about illegal enforcement fraudulent activity filed on my social security telling me to call back before it goes to legal proceedings....this is an automated woman caller coming from an 8175876001.....our area code is 817 but I'm pretty sure this is a scam. This call is getting old and I have not received anything in the mail.

I have received 5 phone called with 5 different numbers, all stated they are from the department of social security stating that they just suspend my ssn due to suspicious activity. Numbers are: 844-243-4432, 800-832-6030, 855-098-2276, 877-222-1478, 800-803-9311

I have received SEVERAL calls from the 877-222-1478 .. got to a rep and he said it was Social Security Administration, what can you say to get them to verify who they are?

I received a call from the "IRS" that I had owed money for an error on my tax form when I asked for what year I was told a year after I stopped filing taxes as all we get is social security retirement ,told them it was a scam and hung up.

I never answer my land line, letting my call blocker answer, but they leave messages, mostly of the tech support or SSA variety, which have a number of things in common. First, the English grammar is horrible, like the following snippet: "It seems to be someone is trying to steal your personal informations. If it's not fixed right away, then all of your credential infomations may got compromised." Or this: "There will be autodeduction $599 from your bank account. In case you don't want to get charges..."

Second, rather than having normal pauses, the messages often have pauses inserted in inappropriate places, giving the voices a strange cadence: "I am calling from Microsoft ...... Windows Refund Department for the refund of your ....... computer technical support which was paid ..... few months ago as the ...... company has been ordered to close ..... down please call our toll free number..."

They often end with inappropriate signoffs, such as, "...before we begin legal proceedings. Thanks."

Lastly, the computerized voices are often of terrible quality, sounding muffled and of uneven loudness. Though they no longer use live callers with Indian accents, the robo calls are obviously programmed by foreigners with limited proficiency in English.

Got a call from a number with an automated voice message, I couldn’t hear it all on my answering machine. This is what I heard “ fraudulent activity, press one to hear more about the case”. Called the number back and it was the actual SSI wage reporting line. Is this one of those spoof calls?

I got one too. Same message. I didn’t call back. Did you ever find out what happened? Was it legitimate? This iso awful.
The number was: ‭+1 (643) 661-9976‬

A few weeks ago I received a call from "Kimberly", of the Social Security Administration Fraud Prevention Unit, but I wasn't home and they left a message. My SS number was being suspended because of involvement with illegal activity. They left a number to call them back. The next day I received a call from "Susan", of the Social Security Administration Fraud Prevention Unit, and that if I do not respond immediately, my assets would be frozen. Again they left a number to call back (same number).
I called that number several times, from a different number of course, and always got a recording that all operators were busy, and to leave a message. I did leave them several messages with very choice words that would make even a hardened criminal cringe.
I reported the messages that were left for me to the FTC with the phone number that was used.
And I had a good laugh.
Stay Alert!!!

I got this same call today
Scam Voice Message received today. Hi this is officer Ryan Smith calling you from the department of social security administration. The reason you have received this phone call from our department is to inform you that there is a legal enforcement action filed on your social security number for criminal activities. So when you get this message kindly call us soon as possible on our number that is 908-991-6490.

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