Have you received a suspicious phone call from people claiming to work for the Social Security Administration (SSA)? If you have, then your personal information may be at risk. Millions of Americans are potential victims of this Social Security phishing scam. Don’t be fooled by the caller ID on your phone displaying the Social Security’s national customer service number. That can easily be faked in order to trick you into thinking the phone call is legitimate.
Whether it’s the SSA, or any other phone number you don’t recognize, it’s a safe rule of thumb to never give out any personal information over the phone. If you’ve received this type of unsolicited call, you can report it immediately to the Office of the Inspector General at 1-800-269-0271 or online at oig.ssa.gov/report.
Be Aware of what they are Asking
The scammer might tell you that your Social Security file is incomplete and will demand you give them personal information. They have been known to entice people by telling them that by providing this information that your benefit payments will increase. They may also attempt to threaten you by saying they’ll terminate your Social Security benefits. Do not believe these lies. These people do not work for the Social Security Administration or any other related office.
If you are ever solicitated for information from anyone claiming to work for the SSA or any other government agency, do not engage with the caller. Simply hang-up and report the call to the proper authorities.
The Real Social Security Administration
Unless you have pending business with them, the real Social Security Administration office would never call you demanding personal information. Real Social Security personnel would never make promises of increased benefits or ever threaten you with the removal of benefits.
How to Protect Yourself
Protecting your personal information nowadays is just as important as staying healthy. You need to take the necessary precautions to protect yourself from potential fraud occurring in your name. You may want to invest in an ID and credit monitoring service. There are many to choose from, such as ID Sanctuary available from Cared and Covered. With this type of service, if you are ever the victim of identity theft or fraud, security experts will guide you through the process of restoring your identity.
Preventing fraud can be easy as staying vigilant, asking questions, and never giving out personal information to someone you don’t know. Follow these rules, and your identity should be safe and sound.