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Earlier this month, we told you about a growing scam: people pretend to be from the Social Security Administration (SSA) and try to get your Social Security number or your money. That scam is now growing exponentially. To compare: in 2017, we heard from 3,200 people about SSA imposter scams, and those people reported losing nearly $210,000. So far THIS year: more than 35,000 people have reported the scam, and they tell us they’ve lost $10 million.

Here’s what one of those scam calls sound like:

Scammers are saying your Social Security number (SSN) has been suspended because of suspicious activity, or because it’s been involved in a crime. Sometimes, the scammer wants you to confirm your SSN to reactivate it. Sometimes, he’ll say your bank account is about to be seized – but he’ll tell you what to do to keep it safe. (Often, that involves putting your money on gift cards and giving him the codes – which, of course, means that your money is gone.)

Oh, and your caller ID often shows the real SSA phone number (1-800-772-1213) when these scammers call – but they’re faking that number. It’s not the real SSA calling.

Here's what to know:

  • Your Social Security number is not about to be suspended. You don’t have to verify your number to anyone who calls out of the blue. And your bank accounts are not about to be seized.
  • SSA will never call to threaten your benefits or tell you to wire money, send cash, or put money on gift cards. Anyone who tells you to do those things is a scammer. Every time.
  • The real SSA number is 1-800-772-1213, but scammers are putting that number in the caller ID. If you’re worried about what the caller says, hang up and call 1-800-772-1213 to speak to the real SSA. Even if the wait time is long, confirm with the real SSA before responding to one of these calls.
  • Never give any part of your Social Security number to anyone who contacts you. Or your bank account or credit card number.

If you get one of these calls, tell the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

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8,513 Comments


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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.
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  • 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 ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

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.

becyg
August 23, 2019
410 844 3418...left a threatening voice mail on my cell phone about my SS number...I did call back and will block this number.
CodyWilbur
August 29, 2019
I've gotten SEVERAL of these calls today- when I BLOCK them., they seem to call back from different #'s..! 1- 844 849-5602 1 844 017-9063 1 866 605 1166
P
August 23, 2019
Got a call from 947-222-4096, claiming that my SSN had been associated to criminal activity, and asked me to call another number (didn’t write it down, though). Called back and a man with an Indian accent picked up. Sounded like he was in a crowded place. I didn’t share any information, of course, and hung up after he asked who I was.
Carmen
August 23, 2019
1 800 599 6629 Scam
criddle
August 23, 2019
Just got a call saying the same thing from 1 (800) 437-7196
Boycott the sc…
August 23, 2019
Everyone has to stop answering these weird phone calls. If it’s really an important phone call they will leave you a voicemail I just received a call from supposedly the S essay saying that my Social Security number had been using fraudulent activity and they filed a lawsuit and now a warrant was issued for my arrest to press one to speak to an officer so I did just to see and the person that answered the phone could barely speak my language wanted my information that’s when I went off and hung up. The weird part is when I return that phone call to let my wife hear it A young man answer the phone and did not know anything I was talking about. He spoke very well English Now that is pretty jacked up. Everyone we have to boycott the scammers quit answering the damn phone. Remember if it is a real legit phone call that is important they will leave a voicemail message
FCB
August 23, 2019
Today I got a call from this number saying they found some suspicious activities and to press 1 to connect to the call. Is this consider a scam too?
crags
August 23, 2019
I have been receiving calls from 1-800-439-7003, 800-457-1074, 800-151-8445 and 62 649-68915
TheatreChick
August 23, 2019
I just got a similar robo call on my voicemail from 1(890)173-9980.
Burly636
August 25, 2019
They tell me that I inquired about Social Security disability, then I ask him where they get their information because I’ve been on Social Security disability for years when I retired from government service then they hang up and you know it’s a scam when they hang up like that, but the call all the time. Sometimes I call these scammers back over and over and over and set the phone down by a loud television then repeat. I get so sick of these people
Ed
August 26, 2019
Have received 4 calls since 8/23/2019 from these numbers: 986 974 9224 986 571 2709 986 129 8584 986 071 1213 All indicate the call is from Social Security; my SS number is suspended; and an "immediate" arrest warrant has been issued. I can dial "1" to speak with an agent. (I don't!) This started on 8/23 and continues to today (8/29) averaging 2 calls/ day during the week.
Alarmed
August 26, 2019
I just received a phone call from them and it was not the ssa. Their still at it!
SE
August 26, 2019
860-007-5656 social security scam
g814
August 26, 2019
One would think that as many times this scam has been reported. Someone would do something to put a end to it. I get calls like this all the time, (3) so far this morning. Mostly they are just annoying but I need to answer my phone. You never know it might be important . Like winning the Jamming Jamaican Lottery if there is one. I'm not a robot
Denise
August 26, 2019
Just received a call stating my SS# will be suspended I could be arrested..... then I called back they picked up and ask how could they help me and I replied you called me!! They hung up; I called this number ‭+1 (833) 782-7226‬ several times keep getting VM greeting saying a different number.....
Sam
August 27, 2019
call came in from 1 860 755 3507 about suspending SS number , what a scam these folks are running.
sooner
August 27, 2019
The scammer #(888)602-3532 SSN issue. Call or be in big trouble.
veweste
August 27, 2019
Received a call from 1-888-602-3532 telling me he was an officer from the SS administration to inform me there's been illegal activity linked to my SSN in Texas. When I gave him a made up name, he said yes, that's the name we have. When I called him on it he hung up on me. I called back, spoke with someone else he too said my ssn# had illicit activity, I told him he's a crook, and to take me off his scam list he hung up on me to.
BewareSSNScammers
August 27, 2019

In reply to by veweste

I received this type of call today from number 866-060-9799. I didn't answer, but the robo-message said my SSN had been compromised and I could be in big trouble, and that should press 1 to continue to agent.
Scam Call from…
August 27, 2019
Recieved call from 2024702369. Didnt answer call. recieved Robo voice mail that arrest warrnet. Please dail 1 immediatly and say your last 4 digits SSN to assist you fast.
MS
August 27, 2019
Got back to back calls from below numbers, one yesterday and one today. Yesterday my SSN was going to be suspended because of fraudulent activity on my account. Today, I got a call saying my SSN has been suspended! "Press 1" to connect with a SSN officer. I just hung up. 800 286 2769 800 458 2891
Lovebaseball
August 27, 2019
2 calls in 2 days. First call says SS number being suspended. Next day, warrent issued for me. These people are as low as you can get!
bananie5
August 27, 2019
Call from "overseas agency" to say fraudulent activity is suspected Gave call back number as 833-261-2611 Recently lost passport. Are they getting info from DHS?
Emma
August 27, 2019
I have 4 more numbers that I have gotten calls on my voicemail. 800- 550-0230, 800-244-3936, 800-313-4470 & 800-286-7353.
Jose C
August 27, 2019
Received two calls and voicemails from two 800 numbers with similar scam. No You cannot terminate or shut down anyone's Social Security number. Scammer phone numbers: 800-633-3329 & 800-377-1347
Sketchy
August 27, 2019
I just received the fake social security suspension call from 860-426-3540. I sincerely thank those who commented esp those who lost hard their earned money. It may not be a big consolation but at least you’ve helped many others.
MamaCam
August 27, 2019
Just received call from this # ‭(833) 683-1777‬ Telling me I’ve committed fraud it’s going to state court and I will be arrested. Why doesn’t someone find these scammers and actually put them in jail. Ridiculous the sneaky horrible people out there these days
Trikhan
August 27, 2019
Please add 279 777 1742 to list of SCAM numbers got a call from them earlier this morning bout drug bust in TX 4 days ago involving my info on a Semi registered to me. I don't live in TX and can verify I was nowhere near TX when it happened but stayed on line talked to couple different people 1 from SSA David Brown and a DEA Davidson. They said someone from SSA would be at my house tomorrow with a new SSN since it was ID Theft and my accounts would be frozen for 24 hour.
dtrnkl
August 27, 2019
I just received this kind of call from the number: 218-210-0810.
Rocket.kitty
August 29, 2019
Received a call from 800-742-1663 Let it go to vmail. It is the scam mentioned above. Same message but female robo voice.
Zelda
August 27, 2019
Phone number 1-800-028-0643 scam, I always ask if they want to leave a number after I call whoever they say they are calling from but mostly tell them I work for the company local office and will check with them in the morning and take care of it. Cuts down on the calls, they won’t call again from that number and block the number.
hello
August 27, 2019
Just got a call from an 800 660 5408 at 3.28 pm on 8/27/2019.
Snmurph83
August 27, 2019
I just received this call. But I didn’t answer it was a voicemail. The phone number was different from the one they listed. 1-800-777-7899
voteforpedro
August 27, 2019
got a call from 910 766 6225, same bs about my ss number. called back a bunch of noise and talking in the background, guy answered " social security office"
amb2
August 27, 2019
I just received a recorded call stating that my ssn has been suspended and that an arrest warrant has been issued. The # that called was from 1-949-381-5054. Will they stop at nothing to steal from other GET A REAL JOB AND MAKE YOUR OWN MONEY. Infuriated......
Badger
August 27, 2019
Another number, 1(800)777-0908, called me twice so far today in Madison, WI.
Jessica Ortega
August 27, 2019
Just received this call today from 1-800-779-5162
gemdust
August 27, 2019
Avoid calls from these phone numbers if you have caller ID: 800-558-9173; 800-584-2074; 800-550-5326; 334-649-6246; 216-352-5998; and 201-350-5698. Our home phone has received calls from all these numbers starting 31 July 2019 through to today. All are an automated recording stating our SSN have been used for fraudulent activity in south Texas and to speak with an Agent about this activity to press 1 on the keypad. That routes the call into a call center where it sounds like hundreds of other people are calling/being called about the same thing. DO NOT RESPOND to these. File a fraud report and list every number you get a call from. Being on the Do Not Call Registry does not prevent calls from going through to telephones.
FLORIDA TEAL
August 28, 2019
ADD THESE NUMBERS TO THE COLLECTION OF SCAMMERS FOR SSN#: 800 100 9108 800 252 6541 800 796 2477 800 180 7018 888 690 4919 800 156 4932 800 221 8798 800 705 8516 800 306 9132 800 907 9663 800 826 5865 800 201 8366 800 773 6540 800 141 8179 800 742 5877 THESE NUMBERS ARE FROM THE MONTH OF AUGUST 2019 ALONE!
LuvmyLG
August 28, 2019
I got 2 voicemails on Fri, August 23rd,2019. Its not the exact wording as the voicemail on this page but it says " this is a law enforcement agency, your soc sec # has been suspended on an immediate basis as we have received suspicious trail of information on your name due to the drastic?( I cant hear the word clearly)and benefits will be "freezed" permanently until you take care of the situation. In order to talk to a representative press 1". Its shorter, and i thought mine sounded much more real but the website voicemail i think is even scarier. I panicked for a few min until my mom reminded me this was going on months ago. I called back both numbers.The first, 1-800-571-4086 doesn't even ring, it just hangs up. The 2nd number was 1-800-438-5318. When i called this back it said "thank you for calling Bavarian Edge Order Line, hold for a representative." I hung up immediately, but i know both #'s are scams bc they match the times on my voicemail.CALLS WERE WITHIN 2 HOURS OF EACHOTHER. Im really mad that these voicemails were able to scare me at first.I can understand how a lot of people lost money. Im so sorry and so p.o'ed for them. Lets find these scammers please!
Teresa Vandal
August 28, 2019
I just got off the phone about ten minutes ago, and it was one of the "Eric Shaw" calls and I have to be honest it scared the H@## out of me. I can only thank God that my husband now works from home because he absolutely knew what to do. He started yelling at the guy saying he was going to call the Houston Police and confirm with them whether it was true or not, but when the guy kept saying no as in "no you can't do that;" my husband yelled louder and more forcefully and told them he DEMANDED to speak to a supervisor... after repeating that three different times the guy hung up. I am so grateful he was here.
phm
August 28, 2019
just got a SS scam from 888-675-6247 voice although may have been computerized has a British accent and text is the same as noted above
dontscamme
August 28, 2019
call from Middleton CT. saying my ss number is being suspended if i dont take action, i didnt answer the call on my cell, they left that voice mail from 860-347-2213, im not falling for it.
Do not answer
August 28, 2019
I received a call today from a number I did not recognize so I did not answer. A voicemail was a robotic recording saying something about "in order to connect with the Social Security administration officer press one now" and something about a concern. The call came from 1-800-535-4259. I am sure they are using several relay phone numbers, so the best advice is DO NOT ANSWER and DO NOT CALL BACK.
kcrw
August 28, 2019
I have received SEVERAL of these calls, all from different numbers with the same recorded message. Both on a landline and a cell phone. I keep blocking these numbers and they find different ones to use and call again.
Adi
August 28, 2019
+1 8006287709, This is the same number, which in the voice of suspend the SIN , its fake
MrsCaliGirl
August 28, 2019
I just received two calls today. One from 1(833)404-7646 & the other from 1(833)344-4053. Both were automated robocalls stating that my SSN is under investigation and that an arrest warrant has been placed against the name associated with my SSN. I hung up immediately because it was an obvious scam. Just wanted to post these two telephone numbers in case anyone receives calls from either of these numbers.
elbam53
August 28, 2019
Hello : I had been received this calls almost every day 1(800) 250-5798 I don’t think SSA will call me they normally send you a letters
Straightforward
August 28, 2019
Got a fraudulent call from this number ‭ (800) 185-5418‬. Caller ID was unknown. They left a voicemail with a warning “in case if we ddn’t hear from you your Social will be blocked permanently “.
Austin resident
August 28, 2019
I got a call from 1-800-204-5064 . And it said that my social security benefits have been put on hold