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If you get a call that looks like it’s from the Social Security Administration (SSA), think twice. Scammers are spoofing SSA’s 1-800 customer service number to try to get your personal information. Spoofing means that scammers can call from anywhere, but they make your caller ID show a different number – often one that looks legit. Here are few things you should know about these so-called SSA calls.


These scam calls are happening across the nation, according to SSA: Your phone rings. Your caller ID shows that it’s the SSA calling from 1-800-772-1213. The caller says he works for the Social Security Administration and needs your personal information – like your Social Security number – to increase your benefits payments. (Or he threatens to cut off your benefits if you don’t give the information.) But it’s not really the Social Security Administration calling. Yes, it is the SSA’s real phone number, but the scammers on the phone are spoofing the number to make the call look real. 


What can you do if you get one of these calls? Hang up. Remember:

SSA will not threaten you. Real SSA employees will never threaten you to get personal information. They also won’t promise to increase your benefits in exchange for information. If they do, it’s a scam.

If you have any doubt, hang up and call SSA directly. Call 1-800-772-1213 – that really is the phone number for the Social Security Administration. If you dial that number, you know who you’re getting. But remember that you can’t trust caller ID. If a call comes in from that number, you can’t be sure it’s really SSA calling.

If you get a spoofed call, report it. If someone calls, claiming to be from SSA and asking for information like your Social Security number, report it to SSA’s Office of Inspector General at 1-800-269-0271 or You can also report these calls to the FTC at


For more tips, check out the FTC’s How to Stop Unwanted Calls and Government Imposter Scams. If you think someone has misused your personal information, go to to report identity theft and find out what steps to take.

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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.

October 29, 2018
I get calls from someone who is not even American, about the IRS going to arrest me. I have contacted the IRS and they told me they do not call anyone. They send regular mail or knock on my door. I get lots of scammers calls but give them no information.
October 29, 2018
Cyber-criminals also have obtained phone numbers similar to SSA, so if someone making a legitimate call to SSA accidentally enters the wrong phone number, the scammers answer, pretend they are with SSA and seeks the caller's personal information or money.
October 29, 2018
Thank you, FTC for staying on top of this annoying issue.
October 29, 2018
How about this: You guys stop these calls before they ever get to the consumer? Make it impossible to spoof a number, either cell phone or landline. Or illegal, with fines that shut them down!
February 14, 2019

In reply to by MarciaT

That is really not the way technology works. The ssn office has no abilities to do make it impossible to spoof numbers or prevent calls from reaching to you.
October 29, 2018
When is congress going to get off the chair and do something about "spoofing" phone numbers?
October 30, 2018

In reply to by dandel61

You have be diligent about YOURSELF. How many things do the gov have to do for you. Just know that welive in Advantage where computers and cell phones are getting obsolete the next day because another version of it comes out that's better faster more security so how is the IRS or the government the IRS should be doing that not the government each company should be responsible for not having spoof calls especially companies like the SSA and the IRS or any of those companies that would never call you directly this scares people imagine old people that get calls from Social Security and they are being threatened to throw the benefits will be cut off of course they're going to start giving information they didn't grow up in this era of technology and I understand that it seems simple for people to just the government to come in and just say stop all this how many things are we going to make the government have to do when R Us as people going to take a stand together and go look you're not going to call my phone anymore and this site right here is how we do it if you're smart and people are smart tell them you're getting a call like this and if everyone tells 10 people those 10 people will tell 10 people and then so on and so on until mostly everybody will know and those scans will stop on their own there used to be a scam a courier service and they used to say that you had to give them your address cuz they were Courier Service and they were coming with papers from the government and if you had something going on you would think that yes I have papers coming and so you did would say where are you right now and then you would tell him and they would start robbing people's houses because they weren't at home see how scans are but that's can one away because people talked about it so don't feel discouraged to feel great that we found a website that cares about consumers the people like you and I that make thissomething that you need to be diligent about on your own because again they cannot look out for billions of people they can look out for a few but you and I have to look out for ourselves so again just responding to your comment no no argument there just wanted to let you know that we have to be diligent as people as our own self because I've had my identity stolen and they'll do it whether they get the information from you online a friend or follow you so be careful everyone out there because it's getting a little crazy
November 16, 2018

In reply to by TheyRLies

Right on target! Excellent advice to spread the word, tell people to pass it on! It is up to US to be diligent, informed and knowledgeable about unscrupulous practices perpetrated by crooks. The government is not there to protect you. Government is intrusive enough.
March 20, 2019

In reply to by TheyRLies

I'm the last one to fall back on government help....but SOMETHING has to be done. Perhaps you don't understand the problem. I own a service business. Locally owned. I get 20 to 30 of these spoofed number calls a day....they are spoofing LOCAL NUMBERS, not 1 800 numbers, not 1 888 numbers...local numbers that individuals own. I have been called thinking it's my mom calling because they spoofed her number....So tell me Mr. be diligent about yourself. How do I handle this? I pretty much have to answer the phone because I would like to stay in business and service the people in my area. Caller ID says it's a local number. Local number means a local potential client so I pretty much have to answer the phone or just not grow my business...only problem is half the calls I get are spoofed scammers faking local numbers...the other half are real people wanting service. SO yeah, the government needs to do something about this...they need to get with phone companies and get this to stop......and i'm not the only local business complaining about this....we can't ignore the numbers because they're local numbers and could be tell am I supposed to be diligent? I don't know their company, i don't know their REAL phone when I ask...what's your company name....they hang up...I have no recourse, I have no company to report, I have no number to reverse am I supposed to do anything about that Mr. Don't let the government handle your problems.....Trust me, I believe the government needs to be about 90% smaller...The Federal government's one and only responsibility is to protect its citizenry.....sooo......Something like this is exactly what the government should be doing....PROTECTING ITS CITIZENRY....that doesn't always mean from commies ya know, sometime's it's about scammers, theft and the like as well .....Yeesh.
February 11, 2019

In reply to by dandel61

Can you do anything about the millions of unwanted phone calls from salespeople that we get every year? Aren't you just as sick of them as we are? We all pay for our phone service but get only rare legitimate calls. Help!!!
October 29, 2018
I have sent a post to all my friends on Facebook.
October 29, 2018
This happened to me. When I called them back as they stated I needed to call back immediately or my as benefits would be suspended. When the guy asked me for my name then said I don’t feel comfortable giving my social security number. He said there are 4 people with same name and he needed my social. When he said that I knew there weren’t others with exact name so I told him I would have my attorney call back and hung up. When I tried calling the local number I was on hold for over 50 mins. So later that day I tried calling the number again and it had been disconnected! I am always suspicious when I get these types of calls.
October 29, 2018
October 29, 2018
while this is good information and I would love to share this, I am not 'LINKEDIN, nor am 'FACEBOOK' sharer and 'I DON'T DO TWITTER'.. would be nice to be able to print this out easily to share hard copy to my friends and neighbors
Tom Ski
October 29, 2018
What,if anything, is being done to stop spoofing? Technology? Laws?
October 29, 2018
Looking forward to interesting and helpful information. Thank You!
October 29, 2018
I get at least 5 unknown calls a day. Microsoft and I know they don't call people. All different names and numbers. I'm so sick of it all. There is no peace in your own home. They start at different times and sometimes end at around 10:00 pm. This has been going on for years and years. Sometimes it's a cell call. I feel like someone is after me for some reason.
October 31, 2018

In reply to by ShirlB

I bought a cheap telephone with answering machine ($50). About 98% of callers hang up when it kicks in. Those who leave a recorded message (Your credit is excellent. Congratulations!) the machine records the day and time so I can report it to the Do Not Call registry. I don't have to be bothered talking to scammers.
Frances J
November 14, 2018
I'm getting alot unwanted calls from different people and places as well I'm on the do not call list as well unwanted text message can you please help me with this
October 30, 2018
This has happened to me several times, I called the phone company to tell them, the calls were coming in under peoples names, I called the number and left them messages as to what these people were doing with their number. I asked the phone company if I should report it to the police, they said no. I told them its got to made public so they don't get the info. Thanks for alternating everyone to this.
October 30, 2018
Thank you for taking my information on a bogus call from SSA. I hope you can use the information to protect seniors from fraud and the complications that happen from identity theft.
October 30, 2018
I am so glad I read these posts. I also am getting these calls. I appreciate the comments. It seems as though the older God blesses me to get, the more they call. Thank you.
October 30, 2018
I love to spoof these calls. I start asking THEM questions! Sometimes I can't keep myself from laughing. I figure the longer I keep them on the phone that is time they will not have to intimidate any other poor person who may fall for their story.
February 27, 2020

In reply to by JoeT

I let my 7 year old grandson answer these calls. After they ask him 2 or 3 questions and they realize it's only a kid, they get frustrated and hang up!
October 31, 2018
FTC does nothing. I have reported unwanted calls at least 3 times a week and they still call. Of course our telephone providers don't do a darn thing since they want our money to block these calls. Nothing ,more than phone extortion.
October 31, 2018
Got a call from (347)695-2034 @11:45am on 10/31/18 from someone claiming to be from the Social Security Administration. I missed the call(was driving) and they left a voicemail stating there was a SERIOUS issue,and that I needed to call back asap. I called back@13:21,and the person that answered had an Indian,or middle eastern accent. He asked me for my name,and I gave it. I asked what the issue was about,and he told me that he needed my social security number. I told him that I don't give that kind of information out over the phone. I then told him that I would be calling the authorities, because I thought he was trying to scam me,and hung up.
October 31, 2018
Just received a robocall from 1-360-559-1877 claiming they were from Social Security Admin. and needed me to call them. This was a message on my answer machine, I didn't pickup. The call came in at 5:58pm Oct.31
Ms Bmore
October 31, 2018
Thank God I got rid of my landline phone years ago. I just have a cell phone and don’t get any of the type of calls you all are getting.
December 04, 2018

In reply to by Ms Bmore

I ONLY have a mobile number and just received one of these calls. DO NOT BE COMPLACENT!!!
November 01, 2018
My parents have received calls over the last 2 days Oct 30 and Oct 31 totaling 20 calls. concerning SSA. My father called the number they called him a derogatory name and hung up on him. I am sure you will be receiving the information in the days to come.
November 01, 2018
It's unfortunate but the FTC can't follow up on everything as fast as we would like them to. There are so many of them now a days and I'm sure it's just as frustrating for them and for any law enforcement agency that gets involved. It's up to the public, it's up to us to do what we can to protect ourselves. NO reputable company or agency will call and ask for personal information because if they are legit they will already have it. So we must always stay alert and be diligent our selves.
November 02, 2018
We got a call one night about a month ago at 3:26 AM, scared the hell out of me at that hour, about a mortgage??????? Found out a few weeks later that everyone with the prefix 957 or 226 in our town got the call. How can that happen? I'm so tired of these calls that I now answer in another language and they usually hang up. Have to go here's another call!!!
Pinole, CA
November 02, 2018
I've received two calls this morning from a phone number showing as Killeen, TX. A female robovoice identifies herself as an "Officer" and tells me my SSN has been suspended. She gives me a second number (not an 800 number; a 245 area code) and tells me to call it immediately. This seems a new variation of the IRS scam of a year or two ago.
November 08, 2018
Received call on 8 November from 301-263-7413 claiming to be SSA. Says that there is a problem with my SS account or number and that if I don't call my benefits will be cut off... called the number - they answered as the SSA... hung up on them.
November 12, 2018
Every few days I get a call from 929 335 2270, but after (2) rings they hang up, so I don't know who called me. I think that if they call me I can report them. But if I 'call' them back they can say "if I called them and it's my problem". So remember, if they call you do not call back.
November 14, 2018
I got a Robocall on November 14th 2018 from 1 (218) 517-2934 claiming they were from SSA saying legal action was filed against my SS number to call them back as soon as possible .
November 21, 2018

In reply to by BJC

The same happened to me. I called them back to 218-517-2934 and been told that USA government will arrest me for drug traffic and money laundering
nag 11/19/18
November 19, 2018
Hello everyone! I been getting weird messages from robo callers. One was from 508-784-1590 11/15/18. I do not answered #’s I do not know. They left a message saying that I have 4 allegations under my name. That I needed to call within 24 hours. If not they will send cops. They called twice. Today 11/19 I got two calls from 214-736-3377 and they said they are from legal actions and fraudulent actions on my social security and if I do not call back legal proceedings. This just started.....any body knows about what is going on. My number is on the list not to call.
Sick of it
November 21, 2018
Call from 704-856-3120, caller I'D said Cina Grove, NC. I let my machinee pick up, obvious robotic voice said there "was something suspicious about my social security" and if I didn't call back right away they would "cut off my benefits". Hmmm well
November 23, 2018
Since the government is too lazy to do anything about it, I'm going to find them and I'm going to physically take care of it.
November 27, 2018
Is it common for SSA to email me to remind me to review my social security statement online.It gives me a url to go there .I tried the url and it looked alright and had a https:// on heading.I thought it being suspicious due to time of year 11/27/18
Mr. B
November 29, 2018
I keep them on the phone as long as I can and give them false information and a better number to call me back (local Sheriff } then tell them I have another call and must go.
Sly the Cyber Guy
December 11, 2018

In reply to by Mr. B

I normally do the same. I love to mess with scammers. Like you, I gave them a fake name and number and the (Asian accent) caller then proceeded to tell me my real name, zip code, and SSN! I was completely shocked. He had me. So, I just hung up.
Finn L
November 30, 2018
I received a call from Granby, Co, that there are fraudulent activities associated with my ss #, and is going to the state court. Fraud?
November 30, 2018
I was spoofed by SSA number, but the crooks already had my info. Not worried, I have security over my social through credit bureaus, anytime a credit card is opened anyway most of the time they also require you send a scan of your social security card and ID anyway, before the card is issued. I'm ready for the scammers.
Man imhot
December 05, 2018
Got a call this morning that I had trouble with the SSA from 214-306-6831 it was a robo call. I called back and some china doll said she was the SSA so I hung up. Called the SSA main number and found out the offices were closed for Bush today!
December 07, 2018
I have received 4 cell phone messages from (559)316-0504 today 12/7/2018 stating they have found several suspicious activities on my ss# and they will suspend my number. It is obviously a scam and it is a recording and I never answer so the beginning of the message they left stating who they are is cut off . I just want to report it. I went to the FTC site to report but it just wants to know if you have given your info to anyone and of course I have not.
Sly the Cyber Guy
December 07, 2018
I got one of these calls. What freaked me out was the caller (Asian accent) already knew my name, zip code, and SSN! Now I'm forced to live with the reality that all my PII is forever compromised.
December 08, 2018
December 18, 2018