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You’ve gotten the calls: from Social Security. Or the IRS. Or Medicare. Or any number of other agencies. Except: as soon as the caller threatens you or demands that you pay them with a gift card or by wiring money, you know. It’s a scam. Even if caller ID tells you otherwise – that’s not the government calling.

The FTC’s latest Data Spotlight shows the surge in reports about government imposters. You know about the Social Security Administration (SSA) imposters who claim that your Social Security number has been linked to “criminal activity” and ask you to provide some information or money. (That’s a lie. The real SSA doesn’t work that way.) But those scammers are not alone: people are still telling the FTC that they’re getting calls from – and losing money to – scammers pretending to be the IRS, Medicare, a government grants group, or cops and the FBI.

Want to know more? Now there’s – dare we say – an awesome way for you to find out. And even create your own handout. You see the graphic here, but if you go to the dynamic, interactive version of the graphic, you can create a version that focuses on the time period or scam you’re most interested in.

Exploring the data can tell you, for example, that this year’s median losses to law enforcement imposters are the highest of all imposter scams (a whopping $3,000), and that 20% of the people who reported those scams told us they lost money. Those calls work because they’re scary. But now you can stay on top of the latest as data is updated every quarter. Or go back 5 years and see how things have changed.

And, of course, there are tips on how to spot government imposters scams. So if you want to share the handout you created with a few clicks, you’ll be able to tell people about not just the scope of the problem, but help them know what to do when they get the next call from the – ahem – government.


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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.

  • We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
  • We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
  • We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
  • We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to

We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.

July 23, 2019
I just received a call from someone stating they were from the Social Security Administration and there was a warrant out for my arrest; press 1 to speak to an agent. I don't know if the warrant was for me or my husband, since we both have the same phone number. I hung up the phone and looked up the number they called from. The number is 207-568-0240 in Thorndike, ME. I called it back and was told the number is not in service. Please beware. I don't know what they would have asked for if I had pressed "1". But I know the Social Security Administration will not make this type of call.
July 24, 2019
3 friends of mine have received large amounts of money from the Bill Gates foundation, supposedly, and have to give from $500 - $700 first. One agents phone number is 229-231-9405 using the name Dennis Also Government donated funds to randomly chosen people by the Endowment for the Humanities financial assistance to assist financially retired,semi retired,disabled,workingand unemployed,i saw your name on winners list. This from a friend today. 802-267-3241. Are they legimate??? B4 i call.
July 24, 2019
I got a call today from this number (1-864-285-7100)claiming to be criminal justice. Soon as I said "I don't know what this is about"they hung up.
July 26, 2019
What I did when I received 3 plus calls no caller I'd or number was Click edit enter 000-000-0000 it worked for me
July 26, 2019
Have received several calls over the few months with 2 calls on the same day this. The call starts out with a man saying his name is Officer David Walkes. He say says we need to contact him regarding suspicious activity regarding our social security and need to call him back at 844-245-2376. These calls were on our voice mail and I promptly deleted them and called our social security office. They told me to contact the fraud department and I'm responing with this message.
Don't use your…
July 26, 2019
I received a call for my daughter on my cell. The woman said she was marshal and needed to serve her papers between 2-5 pm at her home. Left a number to the party that initiated the service request to call if I had questions. I also had number she called from. When I tried both, the call wouldn’t go through. Now what do they get out of these kind of calls? My other daughter received a voicemail from someone that said they were Going to her work and she had to let security know that they were coming. It’s just a scare tactic but I don’t understand why
July 27, 2019
I had a blast with one the other day...I was bored. Said they were from social security. Said my benefits would be cut off. I don't get any yet. Said my bank statements with large suspicious transactions were found in a car outside of a house in Texas. I'm in NJ. There was blood in the car and a huge quantity of cocaine. Said they were coming for me. Apparently I had been tried and convicted. I played with them. The call came as a recording with a call back number. I blocked my number and called. gave them a phony name and ss #...they said they had my file right there and told me about the bank statements, blood and cocaine. I played with them until I got to the DEA guy. He hung up.
July 29, 2019
Natsnana62 I received a number from 1-888-736-2382 saying that my social security number was involved in Criminal Activity. Trying to get me to give them information. I hung up but this number should be investigated as to who it belongs to. Fraud.
July 29, 2019
Just got a call saying I am eligible for a government grant of $9000.00. The call came from 524-201-4430. But they wanted me to call back to 347-878-7231. Did not call back!!
July 30, 2019
I recieved a call to contact a Sam Jordan .Phone number came up from Taiwan .That my ssi number was on hold because of a hack of 200 thousand dollars .I told him send me paper work He said he could not so I hung up.Scam
July 30, 2019
Hello. it has been 2 days back to back I am receiving calls from 1(800)895-7517 and 1(800)485-2681. A massage alerting me that my Social Security Number has been blocked because of suspicious activity and I should talk to their officer by pressing One (which I did not), they said if I didn't press 1 my SS will be blocked indefinitely!? I know this is a scam. So I am reporting it.
July 30, 2019
I received a call from 424-398-3242 saying they were the SSA Department and were filing a lawsuit against me and an arrest warrant has been released on my name due to legal enforcement actions about my Social Security number for fraudulent activities. And to get more information about my case file from the Federal Database call 360-842-4004 to speak with an officer.
DW from PA
July 31, 2019
My mom just received a call from supposedly SSA saying they were going to suspend her SS if she didn’t call back immediately. The recording was American, but the next call was a foreign idiot thinking we are stupid, asking for my name, I asked what the purpose of the call was and he insisted on knowing my name. Well too bad not getting my name. I hung up. It was a California number. 415-659-9639 She received 3 calls within 10 minutes! Trying to report it is like pulling teeth, useless to call the fraud hotline!
July 31, 2019
I keep receiving phone calls that there is suspicious activity with my SS#. They have said they are blocking the use of my SS#. The latest call came from 800-305-3518. I have received calls from 800-488-4250 & 800-082-4975 & 253-299-9287 the last 4 days. I am just hanging up when they start to talk. Should I be doing anything else to make sure they are not hacking my phone?
July 31, 2019
Cell phone call accusing me of Fraudulent Activities in a voice message with a c/b # 310-861-1692 called at 10:44 am and 14:45 pm. never answered either time.
Bobby H
August 02, 2019
Received a call from 830-108-0414 showing from United States. It said that my Social Security had been compromised and to call back.
August 04, 2019
I was told i had received a economical hardship grant from the federal Reserve bank me being a single mother of 4 on an income of 400$ a month to support myself and 4 children one of which has a lifelong autoimmune disease diagnosed last year she goes through monthly 12 hr IVIG infusions at the hospital and weekly shots of methotrexate injections which i have to administer. Shes only 4yrs old . I was also diagnosed with hashimotos disease right after i graduated with my associates degree from college, and just last year i had a full thyroidectomy surgery right after literally a week after that my daughter was admitted for a five day treatment then she was diagnosed with her disease . We are both on alot of medications and she has weekly shots and medicaid doesn’t always pay for all of it. Also school is starting i have 4 kids 4 different schools this year 2 high schoolers one graduating and a middle schooler. We have one vehicle it recently just stopped working for me i have no idea about cars so we are now without a vehicle. Right before school i am caught up on my bills i take care of my kids my daughter and i are sick and don’t receive any assistance other than foodstamps and housing so when they called stating i was picked out of a number of citizens with a clean criminal record that paid they’re taxes and was to receive a federal grant for economic hardship in which i don’t have to pay back just agree not to use for illegal purposes the amount was for 30,700.00 to be paid to my bank account or western union i was sceptical i had been scammed before but for some reason i didn’t get the git feeling the lady really had me feeling like finally god had gave us a break an opportunity to live better and worry less its been really hard for us lately and felt like finally it was being recognized idk. But i was to purchase a federal registration card in which would keep and be able to spend later as i wish. But just to register because i was being wire transfer a large amount from the government and had to be registered so it was 200$ they pressured me and played off my daughter she put on her daughters name to me it was not a scam and i needed to borrow the $ from anyone raise it overdraft it do anything because she asssured me id have it back in hand plus more she walked me through the process it was my first time i did at walgreens she had me purchase a google play and ebay and told me then id be transferred . And registered ti receive a western union for 6000.00 until the amount of 30,000 and she would stay on the phone the entire time. I had just enough for my rent and lights 200$ and i had to send pics of receipt and card and number for the government so id have proof for taxes. Then said to call an official at the federal reserve bank and he would transfer my $. I was kept on hold for about 35 min with 2 kids in a car borrowed in parking lot in 90 degrees weather and i had just used the only money we had to take a chance because. For some reason i truely believed it and my daughter did too so we went for it i started to feel a lil weary then the guy came on the phone said all the fees were paid and i was registered he put me back on hold then came on and told me that the transfer would have to be completed on monday after 11 am because it would take at least 20 min and the bank was closing i told him i was assured id get my money thats everything i had he assured me i would receive my transfer Monday and apologized i broke into tears then quickly realized my kids were with me so i hung up the phone said he said id know monday and we drove home i realize how dum of me to do that and to give my kids a thought or hope for something better nothing better ever comes to us so we now have no $ and am late on my rent and lights. I am most of all scared for Monday when my daughters ask me what happens idk what to say besides i failed them and let them down and imsorry it kills me people could be so heartless.
August 06, 2019
Aug 06, 2019. I wish to report I received 3 phone calls today from numbers 1 833-32-1498, 1 830 549 7228 and 1 830 339 5566 all telling me my SS number has been suspended because of some suspicious activity and if I wish to know about this case just press one. I have not answered any of these calls. I am just informing you. Thank you
August 07, 2019
A Friend of mine called me all excited because she got a call from a company wanting to refund her for a PC plan that she had purchased some time ago. long story short, the refund was 299.99 and they erroneously put 2999.99 in her account. ( she gave acct #). The person was so upset & was going to lose their job. so she got gift cards to reimburse, plus she gave them control of her computer. I immediately told her it was a scam, but she still insisted on explaining to me. so, i said to her "if you happy with it i am too.
August 07, 2019
8339864470 I got 10 calls from this number acting like Ssi saying my number is gone lol so stupid but people will fall for it
August 08, 2019
I just received a SS fraud robocall. I attempted to report it via the SS Admin Fraud Hotline. Unfortunately the hotline (800-269-0271) just puts you in an endless loop with no option to report SS fraud phishing calls. Perhaps this is a new issue (?) but the Hotline is now unusable for actually reporting fraud. The FCC site also provides no option to report individual instances of this type of fraud. Really frustrating.
CW in FL
August 08, 2019
I got a call from "Social Security Administration" stating a car rented in my name was found in TX , blood was found in the car, several bank accounts and 2 pounds of coke. They said they were freezing my SS # and bank accounts, that I could go get the money I don't want them to get and they would give me a "security locker" to deposit the money into until I got my new SS#. I gave them a last name similar to mine and fake last 4 digits of my social. They wanted me to drive to the bank while they stayed on the phone. REALLY? I told them while they had me on hold I reported their info to the FTC, they hung up. Don't try to B.S a B.S.'er. DEA agent Jason Snyder phone # 915-229-2859.
August 09, 2019
I just received a robocall, Friday August 9, 2019 about 12:15 pm from someone claiming to be with Social Security. The mechanical voice told me they were alerting me to fraudulent activity with my social security number coming from south of The Texas border. I was instructed to press 1 to speak with a law enforcement officer about this. I did nothing, said nothing and the caller hung up.
November 21, 2019

In reply to by Gary

same call I got twice today with two different phone numbers both from my hometown supposedly which has only 5 00 people.
August 12, 2019
Sam call from 844-857-3384 stating they were from Social Security about losing benefits.
August 13, 2019
I have recieved now 7 phone calls stating that my SSN has been connected to "Medicare Fraud" and I have a warrant filed for my arrest. I am a Retired Disabled Firefighter and have indeed been getting Social Security benefits for several years now. This scam is SCARY...I have even received messages that state "denied ignorance" in this matter will not stop your arrest. I have called my local Sherriffs office and Federal Marshalls just to rest assured (you NEVER KNOW what can actually happen to your SSN nowadays, people CAN ACTUALLY steal it an really DO something bad....idenity mistakes have been made and people have served many years in jail while innocent). DON'T LET THESE PEOPLE SCARE YOU.....The police suggested this: Does it make sense that ANYONE (any Law Enforcement Agency) would "forewarn" a criminal BEFORE they're going to arrest the criminal time to depart the area?
August 13, 2019
I just received a phone call from someone saying he was from the legal department of Social Security. A lawsuit had been filed against my social security number regarding a fraudlent misuse of social security funds. I know this isn't true but is there anything I can do to protectmyself from this?
August 13, 2019
Unknown number Say Myy SS Number I not use the number any more. Sign Mary Aune
August 14, 2019
i received a call fro m a 1-800-341-0342 number recorded call stating that my social security was being blocked and that there was an issue with my account. I then got connected over to a woman who asked for my name and information. i immediately went on to tell her that she was scamming me, which then she got offended by, then hung up. Also, 240 and 301 area code numbers are also scammers. look out, if the SSA wants you they will not call you.
September 19, 2019
I just received a call and text from a number 925-421-0376 saying it is the FBI telling me I had been scammed. And surely the FBI does not ask people for money at all. So guess he was just an impersonator.
August 15, 2019
I just received a robocall from FSN-EMP9-430468 phone number 210-526-3752 claiming to be the Social Security office. It said to call them at that number because of criminal activity on my account. I hung up because I think it's a SCAM.
August 16, 2019
I received a call from 510-519-7667.Man on phone said his name was Matthew Lee, Federal ID#840851291. Said I qualified for $10,000 in grant money. Gave me two tracking codes, 1)804851291-(2)60973824.He then proceed to tell me how I needed to go to Walmart immediately to receive the money,stating I'd have to get a card which would cost $250.00 that would be refundable.Fortunately I worked for Wal Mart for 18 years,in which I happened to work in the money center where money transfers,and Western Union are conducted.I informed the man of my knowledge,and he tried to argue with me.I ended our conversation by telling him there are forms to be filled out when sending,or receiving money and he provided NONE of the information required.
August 16, 2019
Friends MoneyGram, Western Union, Money transfers, or Government Grants DO NOT require you to put ANY money down for ANY reason. Also there is NO time limit in which you need to pick it up. Please BEWARE of scams!!
August 19, 2019
Received a scam call this morning from 1-866-815-9605 stating they are going to cancel my social security number would be cancelled.
August 19, 2019
I have received more than one voice message telling me to call immediately due to issues with my name and SSN. The message is in English and then repeated in Spanish. A day later a text message indicates to call a number regarding my Chase account that has been locked. All of these are false and easy to check the accounts to determine this. The false calls are from: 877-930-1715 and 201-416-7090.
Chiew Lee
August 20, 2019
Hi, 2 weeks back I got a call (1800) saying that my SSN has been suspended. I spoke to them and gave them the last 4 digits of my SSN :-( . (that was kind of stupid i know) Since then, i have been getting similar calls almost on the daily basis and i ignore them of cos. How do we stop them from calling? Thanks.
Kate from Miss…
August 20, 2019
Just received a phone call from 1-410-517-7977 claiming to be the Social Security Administration. The person stated that my Social Security number had been used in Texas and wanted to verify my information. I assumed from that this was a telephone scam and told him no that I did not give out information like that over the phone. He laughed when I hung up. I assume this was not the Social Security administration. There was lots of background noise and the person spoke with a distinctively non-US accent.
August 20, 2019
Just got a recorded call claiming my SS number had been canceled due to criminal activity and an arrest warrant issued. If you want to know more press 1. When I pressed 1 I was transferred to someone with a foreign accent. He hung up on me for some reason. I was kind of disappointed. I wanted to hear what he had to say.
August 22, 2019
Please stop these phone calls..."this is Nancy your patient advocate working closely with Medicare." I get ten or more calls per day from different numbers. I live in Georgia.
August 23, 2019
I have gotten several calls from different numbers. Theses are a few of them 1883-328-3772, 315-284-5147, 805-422-7349, 315-284-5167
August 23, 2019
An “agent “ from the US Fraud Dept contacted me to say I was going to be indicted in a money laundering, criminal actions with Overseas persons flagged by the government. My family will be disgraced, etc. attorney assigned to me called to help me. I checked her name & a website appeared I called. It was the real persons name & assured me it was a scam. Many sleepless nights
August 24, 2019
I've received two calls---one on my cell, and one on my land line. Both calls were an official sounding male voice saying he was a Social Security agent, and that my social security number was involved in suspicious activity. I laughed and deleted the voice mails. However, I'm posting this because I don't want anyone to fall for this scam!
August 27, 2019
I receive a call today 707-257-6120 from this guy with a heavy accent and told me that he works for Social Security Administration and they found a abandoned vehicle near border with full cocaine and the car was under my name and they investigating money Laundry in my account and asking what’s my account number and immediately hang up and dialed 311 and the the answer my call transferred me to a local deputy near me and told them everything what the guy on the phone has mentioned and he said in 15 days he received 50 complaints in exact same thing so be aware with scummers
Kasey W
August 28, 2019
Got a call today sayong that I supposedly qualified for a grant of $14,566. The guy was of Indian origin (you could tell) but was named kevin Davis.told told me it was because I had never filed bankruptcy and had no criminal record , both which are true. I knew it was a scam so I humored him for a little bit till he pushed me saying he had to stay on the line till I got through the whole process of getting the money and I had to pay a $240 something dollar supposed refundable payment on a eBay card to get the money from money gram no I'm not stupid so I pretended that I had not got my confirmation email told him I had to call him back and blocked both numbers for those future references Kevin Davis 469-567-0552 ext 137 address 900 Bagby st Houston Tx 77002 Lol yes I wrote it all down claiming to be part of the NIH report them
August 29, 2019
On 28Aug2019 at 20:04, we had a missed call with a Voicemail message from +1 (337) 522-7473 Abbeville, LA, United States, that said; the call was from the Federal Security Administration it was urgent they needed to talk to us as soon as possible, then they gave us the phone number to call. Unfortunately we returned the call and a woman with a strong foreign accent answered and told us that she was with the Federal Security Administration and due to fraudulent and drug trafficking activities, associated with our SS# our SS account would be closed by the end of the day. They asked us to verify the last four digits of our SS#, said we had numerous addresses associated with our SS#, asked if we recognized a list of our current and previous addresses. She gave us a Case #CK231462, her name "Jennifer Walker", ID# 2014-48 then she forwarded the call to "Allen White" of the Drug Enforcement Agency and he told us they had found an abandoned rental car in Texas with drugs, money transfers to foreign bank accounts ... finally he said they would call back and hung up. After the call we contacted our son and he told us that it was a scam and to check this website.
August 29, 2019
Received two prerecorded calls today from 855-426-6922 saying it was Social Security Administration and that my Social Security number has suspicious activity and I need to call them back. I blocked the number.
NOT fooled
August 29, 2019
I received a call from 888-164-8755 today. He said he was from the Department of the SSA, that my SSN had been suspend (correctly spelled) due to suspicious activity and if I wanted to know more, to press 1. Really???!!!!!
September 02, 2019
I got 2 call today from Scammers that we’re posing as SSA, 800-962-6950 866-075-7673
September 03, 2019
I received 3 calls today 9-3-19 from 281-245-1913, Alvin, TX leaving the name of Officer Marie Gomez from SSA. She was informing us (no names mentioned) that your SS # has been suspended and to call said number. When are these scam calls going to go away? Can’t anything be done?
September 03, 2019
I rec'd 2 calls today from someone claiming to be with SSA PR recording from SSA Legal Dept for fraud activity and an arrest warrant has been issued for me etc, That was left on my landline voicemail, then they called back after I got home from work and I answered the call and pressed 1. A lady came on the line stating 'thank you for calling' I said you called me, no the call was sent to her. Wanted my first & last name and then she would call up my file. I said you tell me my first & last name since there is a warrant for my arrest, hello hello hello. Wow, no one was there.