Reports of nationwide telephone impersonation schemes continue to come into the Social Security Administration and its Office of the Inspector General (OIG). Scammers will call and attempt to convince you that you have had your identity stolen or are at risk for arrest due to false Social Security problems. They will then try to mislead you into making cash or gift card payments, saying it is the only way to fix your Social Security Problems.
You should also be aware of a newer version of this scam. Scammers will send you emails with attachments that may appear to be official Social Security or OIG documents. These documents may use government jargon, or official letterhead to deceive you into believing their authenticity, but are easily identified by spelling or grammatical mistakes.
In order to educate and warn the public, Social Security has released a new Public Service Announcement (PSA). Featuring a message from Social Security Commissioner Andrew Saul, the PSA video can be found at www.youtube.com/socialsecurity.
Social Security employees only contact people who: have recently applied for Social Security benefits, is already receiving payments, needs to update their records, or has requested a call from the Administration. In most cases Social Security will mail a letter if there is a problem.
Be aware that Social Security will never:
- Say your Social Security number has been suspended.
- Contact you demanding immediate payment.
- Ask for your credit or debit card information over the phone.
- Require a specific form of debt repayment, like a prepaid debit card, a retail gift card, or cash.
- Demand you pay Social Security debt without the ability to appeal the amount you owe.
- Promise Social Security benefits in exchange for information or money.
Go online to oig.ssa.gov to report a Social Security scam.