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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 ftc.gov/complaint.

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8,513 Comments

AvgUser
June 17, 2019
I have gotten several calls today about my SSN being 'suspend'. The use of improper grammer was a give away. Also, in general you can't have your SSN suspended. These calls wanted me to hit 1 on my phone to speak to someone about this. I'm sure this would be an attempt to get my SSN but also may dial a toll number by hitting 1 and trying to rack up charges that way.
jshebsnoo
June 17, 2019
They are using 844-340-8141 as well
SoCalSM
June 17, 2019
Got a call today 3:16 pm in Los Angeles, from New York, NY phone of (718) 395-3425. Left robot voicemail saying exactly this. Googled the phone number and found this page.
enlightsean@
June 18, 2019
I keep getting a call from the number; 510-112-7272, 510-112-7298, and 510-112-7285. They are now leaving voice mail that my social security number is suspended.
ML-SD
June 17, 2019
I have received 7 of these calls spread across several days from different +1 (510) 112 7xxx numbers every time, with the same identical prerecorded voice mail message claiming account suspension and to press 1 to find out more
ShockedByPeople
June 17, 2019
This just happened to me today. The phone # was 510-112-7268. The gentleman who had an accent introduced himself as Officer Eric Shaw from the Social Security Administration. He provided a badge #417J2741 and said that my SS# had been misused in the state of Texas and that there was an arrest warrant out from me. Asked me if I was aware of this. He asked to verify my info -- name, address, etc. which he had. He asked to continue with the investigation over the phone and when I asked him to verify who he was he said we could continue over the phone or in person at his office. I opted for his office and he hung up on me. I called the police and they suggested to visit my local SS Admin office to file a report as well as put security holds on my credit so that no one could open a new CC under my name. They also suggested to check during tax filing that no one used my SS# for employment purposes. CRAZY!!
wichitakansas
June 17, 2019
Left this message on recorder - Phone I’d is actually ss phone number of Columbus, Ohio ss office 866-656-0178 “ From the Department of Social Security Administration. The reason you have received this phone call from our department is to inform you that we just suspend your social security number because we found some suspicious activity. So if you want to know about this case, just press one. Thank you.”
Irritated
June 17, 2019
Received an automated call similar to one posted in alert above. Claims from department of soc security administration. Plus Grammar not correct. Said my number was being suspended as they detected suspicious activity. Supposed to type 1 if I want to hear more re this case. As I am typing this - they are calling again. Calling from 1-800-772-1051. Interesting twist - before I started getting the call - got a text message telling me a certain delta airlines flight was departing from NY LGA on time, etc.
Skeptic68
June 17, 2019
Fortunately I had heard about the scam and I don’t answer my personal phone at work. Two calls one immediately after the other regarding “suspicious activity “ and that my “social security was being suspended .” The calls appeared from New York and the number was 718-395-3425.
SK
June 17, 2019
Same scam--recorded voice message...202-751-1943
Al
June 17, 2019
Received a call from scammers saying my social was being suspended due to criminal activity. The number is 1-832-481-6683. Beware.
Mike
June 18, 2019
Got the usual call: SS suspended, criminal investigation .... I called back just for to see what's happening. A guy with and accent was on the phone and was telling me he is a SS agent, his badge number... . I let him explain and asked him what to do. He gave me a file number and asked me to repeat the number. I asked him why I should repeat the number. He got angry and called me expeltive names and hung up. Guess I wasted his time.
California
June 18, 2019
Just received one of these calls from a 718 (NY) number. Why are there not repercussions for foreign companies that make these fraudulent calls...
Fell for it
June 18, 2019
I received this call on 6/17/19 from the number ‭ (811) 254-700‬ claiming that my SSN was about to be suspended due to suspicious activity. It asked for me to press 1 to receive more info and I did. It led me to an operator who asked for my name, which I gave to him, and for the last 5 digits of my SSN which I said I didn’t remember, then asked again for the last digit of my SSN which I said again that I didn’t remember; finally, it asked for my address as a confirmation and I gave it to him. Then he explained that there had been an investigation of my identity since a car bought under my SSN/name in El Paso, Texas had been found with cocaine and money and that the car led to a house rented under my name where they had found over 70 pounds of cocaine. He claimed that I would receive a new SSN in 24 hours and that an agent would come to my house to further explain the situation. Then he asked me if I had any cars, houses, or bank accounts under my name, and also how many addresses were listed under my SSN. I told him that I only have one address and that I don’t have any of the listed. The man claimed to be called Martin Beying (I couldn’t write down the last name correctly at the moment) and that his identification ID for the Social Security Administration was 417J278. He had a middle eastern accent. I fell for the trap and gave him my name and address and zip code. I am a minor and my SSN isn’t related to any properties or bank accounts, and I was lucky to not remember my SSN. I spent 15 minutes speaking with this operator.
roygbiv
June 18, 2019
additional phone # to add 512-643-8329
Chris N.Y.
June 18, 2019
Just received a call from 718 395 5435 telling me to press '1' on my phone (which I not did).
NAI
June 18, 2019
I RECEIVED A CALL FROM 716-241-1686, IT WAS A ROBOT SPEAKING STATING MY SOCIAL SECURITY # HAS BEEN SUSPENDED DUE TO SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY. SCAM SCAM SCAM
ssims
June 18, 2019
Got a call from a San Diego number 619-505-0659, saying the same thing. They left me a voice mail, telling me I was going to be arrested lol.
Nate
June 18, 2019
I've also received several calls in the last few days. Have not answered but the voicemails being left say something about the border in Texas and that I need to press one to speak with an officer. The grammer of the voicemail is TERRIBLE and clearly a scam. This has come from multiple different numbers and just started within the last day or two. I won't be calling them back.
1030319251226
June 18, 2019
I got a call from MacDougall 315-201-8290 saying my ss benefits were going to be suspended immediately.
Stevens49
June 18, 2019
(510)-112-7326 is SS scam number I received a call from just a few short minutes ago. I listened but did not say a word. It was an audio clip on repeat so I listened for a bit to see if it was going to change and then when it didn't I hung up. After hanging up I blocked the number. I was in the bank last week and a lady received this call and innocently gave her SSN out and they wouldn't stop calling her non-stop asking her to withdraw money from her account. My guess is they wanted to see activity on the account so that way they know they have the right person. Through tears she explained to the bank teller what was going on and he did his best to reassure her. Then took a few extra precautionary steps to secure her account. I dont know what ever happened after that but I hope everything was ok. These scams are very serious and have been a lot more frequent in June 2019.
Lou
June 18, 2019
Just received a version of the above phone call...
Layback
June 18, 2019
A 1 800 is calling first a lady says she is from social security and you are being investigated, Push number 2 then a man comes on and says you are being investigated for drug smuggling and money laundry and need last 4 of social security . Athens Alabama
Hope this help…
June 18, 2019
I got a call from 800-593-8998 and the recording said that there was suspicious activity with my social security number. They said it was going to be suspended if I did not speak to someone. They said I should press 1 to speak to an agent. [I googled the number out of curiosity, but I would never give my SS # to anyone, or talk anyone who calls about my personal information. The best way is to call whatever company you believe is trying to reach you, if you are associated with them - but first do research on the suggested info. or potential scam. It's easy enough to find things on internet with similar situations.
Anon
June 18, 2019
Got a call yesterday from 305-503-6113 out of Miami, FL that sounded exactly this, though the message was slightly different. Blocked the number. Got a call today from 940-324-4020 out of Pilot Point, TX, which sounded more like a real person: "Press 1 immediately to speak to a social security administration officer. If you've missed this call, our call back number is 940-324-4020. I repeat, the callback number to the headquarters of the social security administration department is 940-324-4020. Do not disregard this message and call back immediately as this is a very serious matter. Goodbye." Aside from not having taken part of any crime, I keep tabs on identity-related issues, but I can see how some people might give in to this, as it's pretty ominous sounding. Someone gave the Texas number their social an hour ago. It's so wrong.
BIGJOHNBOY
June 19, 2019

In reply to by Anon

I GOT THE SAME MESSAGE FROM THE EXACT SAME 940 NUMBER!! SAVED THE MESSAGE AND WROTE THE INFO FROM IT!!!!
Concerned
June 18, 2019
I just got a call from Balitimore with a recorded line from 1-410-63-1256. Telling me my Social security will be cancelled and there is lawsuit against it. if I dont act fast my number will be blocked and cancelled. I called the number back a live person answers with; this is the social security administration office. I just hung up. I am really concern though. I think if any would really be wrong they would send you a letter. I just wish this people would get caught.
legitimatelyupset
June 18, 2019
I have received two calls from: 1-347-313-8280 stating my Social Security number will be suspended. I hope the government will follow up with the full extent of the law. You know senior citizens may fall for this.
SHarry
June 18, 2019
just got a call form 410-600-1135 saying they are the SS Administration . He said his name is officer Henry. I know it was a scam .
Derek
June 18, 2019
“Is to inform you about some legal enforcement _⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_ I will talk to your social security number we have got in order to suspend your social _⁠_⁠_ a very right moment because we have found many suspicious activities on your social before we go ahead and suspend your number kindly call us back on our number which is 877-478-9470 I repeat it's 877-478-9470 and if you and goodbye if you wish to speak with our executive and then press one now…”this is scam call I got for past 2 days
Gertrude Taylor
June 18, 2019
I just received a call from 866-931-9173 saying my SSN was being suspended due to suspicious activity, be careful of this number.
Catherine Gonzalez
June 18, 2019
I got a call from 1(800) 772-1213 they told me that my social security number was being investigated asked me for my address and the last four of my social security. They told me that my social was going to be suspended, and they were going to issue me a new one. I got really scared and decided to go into the Social Security Office and make sure everything was okay and the call was just a SCAM !!! Please do not give any personal information over the phone to anyone, and don’t get scared of what they are going to tell you. Go to your local office and get more information!
cambry
June 18, 2019
Received scam robo call, stating there was " fraudulent activity on my social security number". Left call back number of 650-268-8371.
KristiM
June 18, 2019
This is a voice mail I received from (214)-444-9448 “This is the office _⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_ _⁠_⁠_ calling you from the head office of Social Security and ministration this is the final reminder for you your Social Security number has been suspended due to illegal activities please contact your _⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_⁠_ officer at
vic
June 18, 2019
Calling from +13104643576 today and live person answer the phone with same message .
Julia6/18/19
June 18, 2019
I’ve received multiple calls from 1 510-112-7342, 7334,7227,7403,7418,7352 This is absolutely crazy! These people need to get a life and stop scamming good people!
Ian12
June 18, 2019
I received a call from a DC number (202 750 1947) but I didn't answer. The message left was very similar to the recording above. Basically the message was, "This is the legal department for the SSA. Due to fraudulent activity on my SSN, we have contacted the authorities to issue an arrest warrant. If you respond with your SSN, the issue can be resolved and no arrest will be made. " The whole thing was horribly sketchy. The recorded message was pretty poor quality and it seemed like someone was holding a recording to the phone but was too far away to start. I also learned the number was a VoIP from bandwith.com.
J Maier
June 18, 2019
Started getting this message in the last week... several a day up to like 20 times so far. Lame.
Copy of VM Tra…
June 18, 2019
“This call is from the Department of Social Security administration the reason you have received this phone call from our department is to inform you that we just suspend your Social Security number because we found some suspicious activity so if you want to know about this case just press one thank you…”
Othercalls
June 19, 2019
Received two calls from two different DC numbers. They both left messages saying that this is the SS Administration officer, so and so, there has been suspicious activity on your ss number at the Texas border. Press 1 for more info, etc. Calls were one minute apart. Next day got another call from an unknown number leaving a message, so and so is on the Texas border, press one for more info. Same day a call from NY , similar, suspicious activity on the Texas border. Press 1 for more info. They were all messages since I did not pick up the phone.
Horace
June 19, 2019
800-920-2721 Same type scam message re permanently losing social security benefits unless you press 1 or immediately call back.
Iri
June 19, 2019
I just got another call been a few in the last 2 months. Not only are they using the social security phone number they're using 888 and 979 from Texas. I have a son living in Texas I answered thinking it was him. Nope it was a guy that sounded straight up Indian once again telling me he was an officer and that my social # had been used for delinquent actions. If I didn't talk with them they were gonna proced a judgement against me. I blocked them with an ID app i have on my cell so when they call again they will get a busy signal and won't be able to leave a message. But they always call from different numbers.
Kathy G
June 19, 2019
I got a call from 347-313-8280 saying my SS # is suspended due to suspicious activity and to press 1.
none
June 19, 2019
(800) 205-1742 called with a similar automated msg but was female.
simonswalker
June 19, 2019
Receiving multiple calls daily from 510-112-7463 about suspicious activity with my SS# and that it has been suspended.
Ridiculous
June 19, 2019
Just got a message on my voicemail from +1(281)110-877. Obvious scam considering the number. The message said .... “This call is from the Department of Social Security administration. The reason you have received this phone call from our department is to inform you that we just suspended your Social Security number because we found some suspicious activity, so if you want to know about this case just press one thank you.” Again obvious scam. No professional organization ends a message like that. Be wary, folks, and use common sense. The first thing I did was Google to see if the SSA would ever suspend a SSN and it brought me here. These people are pathetic.
Sam
June 19, 2019
i received identical fake call from 1-800-205-9873 today. Blocked the call for now.
Disturbed on m…
June 19, 2019
I just received this call from a different number. It was 866- 678–9232. It was a heavily accented man but the message was almost exactly the same as reported in this article.
PApack
June 19, 2019
(210) 742-9479. "Sean Petersen" left a message about SSN being investigated for criminal activity.
H8scammers
June 19, 2019

In reply to by PApack

I also received a call and robotic VM from Sean Peterson today.