Updated: May 21
BBB and FTC are warning consumers to be on the lookout for suspicious phone calls that claim to be from the Social Security Administration. Scammers are ramping up their efforts to steal Social Security numbers to use in filing tax returns. Fraudulent letters have also been used to threaten Social Security benefits due to COVID-19-related office closures. These calls and letters are designed to induce fear. Scammers hope that under pressure you will tell them your SSN and other personal information. They can use Social Security numbers to commit identity theft and file tax returns in your name to steal your refund.
Here are a few tips on how to avoid the scam:
Never give personal information to unsolicited callers. If someone contacts you without your permission, refuse to tell them any personal information.
Remember, the SSA will never call you asking for your Social Security number. They will never ask you to pay anything, nor will they threaten your benefits.
Don’t trust your caller ID. The internet has made it possible for scammers to use fake IDs when they call your home. If you receive a suspicious call, don’t make any important decisions based on what your caller ID says.
Contact the Social Security Administration: If you are concerned about a call you received from someone who claims to be with the SSA, you can call the real SSA at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).
Always report any suspicious activity at Scamtracker.org to ensure no one else falls victim to this scam.