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Have you gotten calls about supposed problems with your Social Security number from callers pretending they’re with the Social Security Administration (SSA)? If so, you’re not alone. Our latest Data Spotlight finds that reports about SSA imposters are surging, while reports about IRS imposters have taken a dive.

As the Spotlight puts it, “In the shady world of government imposters, the SSA scam may be the new IRS scam.” While reports of SSA imposters have swelled – nearly half of the reports we’ve gotten in the last year have come in the past two months alone – reports of IRS scammers have plunged. What’s more, people told us they lost $19 million to SSA imposters in the past year. That overtakes the $17 million reported lost to IRS imposters in 2016, the peak year of the IRS scam.

How can you spot SSA imposters? They often use robocalls to reach you, then launch into a story aimed at tricking you into giving them your money, your Social Security number (SSN), or both. They may say your SSN has been suspended and you need to confirm your SSN to reactivate it. Or, they may say your SSN has been involved in a crime and your bank account is about to be seized or frozen, but you can protect your money if you put it on a gift card and give them the code. Never do that – your money will disappear.

If you get one of these calls, remember – the real SSA will never contact you out of the blue or tell you to put money on a gift card or, for that matter, visit a Bitcoin ATM, or wire money. If your caller ID shows a number that looks like it belongs to the SSA, don’t trust the number – scammers fake their caller ID all the time. If you’re worried, hang up and call the SSA yourself at 1-800-772-1213.

Check out the Data Spotlight for more information. If you think a scammer has your Social Security number, visit to learn what you can do.

Hang up on Social Security Scammers

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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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Cupcake's Mom
April 12, 2019
Why can they take the money from these gift cards? I think the companies issuing the cards (Apple, Google, etc.) should be more responsible and put safeguards on their cards to deter this type of scam.
April 12, 2019

In reply to by Cupcake's Mom

If the gift card number isn't recorded, then how would the company know which one to freeze?
Fed up with calls
April 12, 2019

In reply to by Cupcake's Mom

The companies do use a safeguard. That's the number on back that you have to scratch off to see. What you do with the card after you purchase it is up to you.
April 13, 2019

In reply to by Cupcake's Mom

if you bought traveler's checks and gave them to a crook, should the issuing bank be responsible? Those cards they are asking for are like gift cards…not credit cards.
April 17, 2019

In reply to by Cupcake's Mom

They can take the money from the giftcards because the scammers convince their marks to send them the giftcard's code. There's no way to prevent that without prohibiting the use of giftcards online or over the phone.
April 12, 2019
Just got a call from SSA scammers.
Karaoke Paige
May 30, 2019

In reply to by One-who-doesn'…

Just got 4 calls from SSA scammers.
fed up with scammers
July 16, 2019

In reply to by One-who-doesn'…

Friday, July 12, I got 9 robo calls from different #s in the course of 2 hours from "SSA" that my SSN had been suspended. I only answered once then didn't answer again and blocked each new number
August 05, 2019

In reply to by One-who-doesn'…

817-659-0746 and 830-212-7141 called and said social security number has been suspended.
Gloria Mision
September 03, 2019

In reply to by pj4035

1-800-398-1635 number called me on my cell phone and said that my ssa number has been suspended. then 2 days later they called my husband's cell number with same message!
August 23, 2019

In reply to by One-who-doesn'…

I just got a call and they said press one, I wanted to see who answered, they said hello, then changed it to SSA, I told them not so nicely, I knew they were a fraud, and don't call me again. I knew good and well it wasn't SSA.
Mystery Lady
September 04, 2019

In reply to by One-who-doesn'…

I have had 3 phone calls 30 minutes apart from these people. I blocked the call the first time. They still get through & leave voice mail messages to call them back. The caller says they are Officer Maria Gomez from the Social Security Administration. For one thing, their headquarters aren't located in California. LOL!
December 13, 2019

In reply to by Mystery Lady

I received this same bogus phone call, "This is Officer So-And-So and we have your SSN connected with multiple criminal activities, blah, blah, blah, and you need to call us immediate to get this matter settled or we will send out a warrant for your arrest ..." and the phone number had an area code from California. I laughed and hung up the phone. Some folks have nothing else better to do.
October 23, 2019

In reply to by One-who-doesn'…

We received 16 phone calls yesterday saying our social security has been suspended due to probable crime and theft of our social security number. the phone rang all day from 2 different phone numbers. How do we stop these calls???? The do not call list is a joke! We know they are scams and don't call them back as they requested but its extremely annoying!
April 12, 2019
I just hang up when I get these calls.
Don't gerryuse…
April 12, 2019
Yes I have received numerous call re: Medicare. I could not get the caller off my phone. I went toAT&T to ask for help. They could not help me get it off my cellphone. Very disturbing.
April 25, 2019
Important info...thank you.
April 12, 2019
I got 25 calls 4/11/19 telling me that my social Security number was suspended because of suspicious activity. I blocked the numbers and machine picked up calls. They call all day from 8 am to 9 pm.
April 30, 2019

In reply to by Fedup

Yep got the same thing. 10 calls over the last 2 days. Hope they get caught soon.
fool me once
June 11, 2019

In reply to by jdb14134

I initially gave my SS# then realized it was a scam when they made their pitch. I messed up and wondered if I should notify my bank etc. just in case. How serious was this mistake?
FTC Staff
July 05, 2019

In reply to by fool me once

This page on has tips on what to do if your information is exposed to a scammer. It explains what to do depending on the type of information that was exposed.

November 15, 2019

In reply to by PhonySSA

I keep getting phone calls this morning saying they are form The Investigation of Social Security. She says my Social Security number will be suspended and their is a Warrant out for my arrest.Many different phone numbers
5 calls in apr…
June 03, 2019

In reply to by Fedup

I got 5 of these calls today (6-3-19 between 9:10 and 2:08) with rolling phone numbers proving robo-calls. Three were caller IDed as Boone Inc with 828 and 831 area codes. 2 were IDed as Anonymous at 831 and 719 area codes. I did NOT respond to these calls. They left messages on my answer machine. Beware!
June 11, 2019

In reply to by 5 calls in apr…

I just got 2 calls from Boone, NC. Prefix of 828. I did not respond and they left the same scary messages by Robo caller.
June 10, 2019

In reply to by Fedup

just got three calls in a row. same issue. they have used three different numbers. I think any software that is available that can change the phone number you are calling from to a number that would try to make you pick up your phone for the purpose of marketing, scams, or collections should be banned period. it is deceptive. my 90 year old parents have been getting the same type of calls also. upset them greatly and they were going to call these folks back. older people are just more trusting.
July 18, 2019

In reply to by lkdam

I just received a call from + 011 with a prerecorded message from the social security administration. Stating I have filed a fraudulent case and a warrant for my arrest was issued. Please stay on the line to be connected.of course I hung up. I knew it was a scam right away social security would send you an email or letter if there's a problem.
June 11, 2019

In reply to by Fedup

I’ve been recieving these SSA calls for six months . Each time more aggressive and threatening. Very disturbing, scary., Especially because of what they say the crime I’ve committed is. I’m stressed out and paranoid because of these calls, I also have severe nightmares. I’ve put myself on the NATIONAL DO NOT CALL REGISTRY IVE BLOCKED THEM AND ALL THEY FO IS USE ANOTHER NUMBER. I don’t know HOW they know everything about me because I don’t and won’t give that information. I’ve reported it and still no rest. They call 90 times s day. From 6 am to midnight some days it’s unbeatable , I’ve even changed my number a couple times! The last call was on. Monday, I no longer answer my phone I continually miss important calls due to these scammers, WHAT DO I DO???? HELP!
April 12, 2019
What if you were to say to them "Okay, I'll visit you in person at my local branch. Who should I ask for? I don't feel comfortable giving any information about myself on the phone."
August 07, 2019

In reply to by P.J.

They will tell you that your local office doesnt know about this yet which is why they have called u to clear it up before it reaches local office
April 12, 2019
Seems like the phone companies that sell the caller ID should refund their customers for this useless service since its been compromised and put a complete stop the abuse and illegal use of their equipment. Sick of this crap!!
April 12, 2019
I have received several calls about my SSA disables and another’s one about a hour ago, stating that there was arrest warrant out for me for miss using my benefits and the last a forum all legal complaint against me...I have received at least 5 things like this. Please HELP
April 12, 2019
I have received several calls about my SSA disables and another’s one about a hour ago, stating that there was arrest warrant out for me for miss using my benefits and the last a forum all legal complaint against me...I have received at least 5 things like this. Please HELP
April 12, 2019
I have received several calls about my SSA disables and another’s one about a hour ago, stating that there was arrest warrant out for me for miss using my benefits and the last a forum all legal complaint against me...I have received at least 5 things like this. Please HELP
April 22, 2019

In reply to by Star

None of this is real. Don't panic. Just block the calls on your cell phone and if your carrier offers a spam alert service (AT&T and Verizon do for free) add it to your services list.
April 12, 2019
My policy is not to engage in any phone conversation that I did not initiate, ESPECIALLY if they are asking for personal information. We block and hang up on ALL robocalls.
Disgusted with…
April 12, 2019
I don't answer a single call. Zero. I don't even reply to messages, usually none or rare if via phone, e-mail, or text. I do likewise with job alerts and advertisements. I delete them right off immediately. These are all SCAMS and false as to their content and messages, especially the intrusive ads. Disgusting. Shall we all thank the profiteers including the "social" media.
April 12, 2019
I am so very tired of receiving these calls and threats. They do not stop! I even when you say that you will contact the F.B.I. and they will even give you there name. received the micro soft, social security.and the IRS. They should go to jail for what they do to people. My friend was last scammed had gone to the bank and the teller called the police thank goodness.
April 12, 2019
April 11 must have been a busy day for scammers. I must have gotten about 10 calls to my cell phone. I keep it on silence so it doesn't bother me. And they always leave a message. When you block the call it's like playing whack-a-mole. There's always a new number!
April 12, 2019
Experts concerns that writtens letters should be sighed from that especific person who writes to avoid the uncover instead that acting on the agency's name causes a suspects to false on the written
Kona Lulu
April 12, 2019
my husband got a SSA scam call threatening that his SS number has been compromised and it will be "taken away from him" On another note, I did an internet search on my name and found a report that showed where I live, how old I am, how much $$ I am probably worth, my nationality, and gave me a "rating". Half of the information was completely inaccurate. I have an unusual first and last and middle name so can't be confused with anyone else. This whole "report" made me very angry and I didn't want to register with the company to make corrections, thinking that they would likely do more, or try to learn more than I wanted to give them. I only have a FB and linked in account, never put my birthday or marital status or any financial information, my address is a PO Box.... So what, if anything can I do to remove this erroneous information, and frankly I don't think anyone should be able to put this stuff out there in public without being subject to being sued for incorrect information as defamation of character. Are there any class action lawsuits I can participate in?
April 12, 2019
I have gotten several calls from #707-502-2962 regarding suspending my SSA # due to suspicious activity. They even left a voice mail saying to "push #1" to learn "more about this case" which I DID NOT do. I have blocked the # on my cell phone but hope people know not to push any #'s or act on these greedy calls in any way.
April 23, 2019

In reply to by donotpush#1

Got a call from 610-487-0223 about a lawsuit against my SS number. I told them to go ahead a file a law suit. They said they would suspend my SS number???? I again I told go ahead. They hung up.
April 12, 2019
I received a call that Texas Rangers found my SSN in an abandoned car used to smuggle cocaine . They proposed a scheme to protect my assets if I provided my SSN. I hung up !
April 12, 2019
Thank you.
Mrs. RMG
April 12, 2019
I just got one of these robo fake SSA calls yesterday saying they suspended my SS number. I knew it was a con job.
Linda Nelson
April 13, 2019
Recently I received an email asking for my SSN among other things. I sent the info to you.
April 13, 2019
Social Security doesn't make cold calls. They send postal mail. Just like the IRS does.
April 13, 2019
I start receiving calls at 8am-9 pm. So frustrating. I just keep blocking them.
April 13, 2019
Yes, we received on of those calls telling us that we were in financial trouble, and we needed to... That is as far as they got. One of us replied, "and did U know that the moon is green cheese?" And then hung up. Do Not believe them.