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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

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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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Merrilee Rothan
September 18, 2019
I got an automated call from a woman saying they found a fraudulent use of my SSI number in Texas. And if I wanted an officer to call me back press the number 1. Later when I didn't respond. A number with a San Fransisco number called me.
September 18, 2019
They are now calling under this number.
Nature Lover
September 18, 2019
I received a phone call today, Wednesday, September 18, 2019 from 1-800-548-5815 saying my social security number is being suspended due to suspicious activity using my number, and to press 1 to be transferred to someone to fix the issue (or something to that effect).
September 18, 2019
The call number is 877-4427986. It is call you about social security but it is hard to understand.
September 18, 2019
Got a voice mail stating that my social security number will be blocked and no longer valid if I do not call 800 272 9914 to speak with a social security office administer.
Don't use your…
September 18, 2019
I received 3 calls in one morning.. 2 were scratchy recordings.. The third was a woman (number listed as a Florida #) Telling me they've issued a warrant for my arrest..It was clear, with no accent..I don't answer calls when I don't recognize the numbers, and let them go straight to voice mail..Then I block that number If it is an important call I can return the call right away..Nothing lost
September 18, 2019
Just received a call from 946-073-1159. Even said there is a warrant out for my arrest. Press 1 to speak someone immediately Crazy stuff!
September 18, 2019
I just got call from 888 944 2147
Concerned Person
September 18, 2019
I got 3 calls yesterday from 800-199-3113. You call back and it's a disconnected #. They were calling like every 30 min yesterday! SMH
September 18, 2019
I received a call from this number 1800-092-9556, they said that my social number was going to be suspended, I hung up, an hour and a half later I received another call from another number 1800-432-5016, did not answer the call and they left a Voice message threatening that my social number was going to be suspended that if I did not answer or return the call by pressing number 1, it would have legal consequences
September 18, 2019
Same thing just happened to me, they are calling from: 680-201-1675, be careful!
September 19, 2019
My wife received a call and the voicemail left is pretty similar to what is recorded above, however they are asking to call back at 786-209-3497. My wife panicked and called me. I had to calm her and explain it is a scam.
in Alabama
September 18, 2019
I just receive a call from 1-800-277-1058 from one of these scammers claiming to be from the SSA and that they've noticed some suspicious activities on my SS so I need to contact SSA to resolve it or it will be completely shutdown.
Beware! (800)5…
September 18, 2019
I got the same scam message from this number .(800)578-9335
September 18, 2019
I got a call with a female sounding bot voice stating my ss was compromised. This is the number they called me from ‭+1 (800) 200-3113‬
K Fox
September 18, 2019
I just received a call from 866-550-6840. It's a toll free number and they left a message saying that my social security number was tempered with. This is a scam and they try to get all the information about your s.s. number.
September 18, 2019
800-321-5268 just called with similar threat.
September 18, 2019
Scam in Houston ‭+1 (832) 739-9091‬
Sally Jen
September 18, 2019
Also received a call from ‭+1 (713) 636-5749‬ left a voicemail saying they’re suspending my ssn
September 18, 2019
I got a call from work and I quickly answered it. It was an machine call saying that an arrest warrant was issued for my arrest if I didn't call them on some fraudulent claims on my Social Security Number unless I call them. The number was garbled, so I couldn't hear the number. When I hung up the phone the caller ID said it was +43-652-1010 Austria. I don't know what was fake, the machine caller or the location of the call.
September 18, 2019
I just received a scam call from 510.426.9941. I didn't answer, but after they left a message, I called back. The guy with a broken accent said he was with SS and my account may have been involved in fraudulent activity. He hung up after he asked my SS# and I started asking him questions to verify if the call was authentic...
September 18, 2019
Just caught one and kept calling him back to mess with him. He kept hanging up after I asked him why doesn't have my SS# if talking my cell saying going to freeze my number. 979-291-0861 Someone call and mess with this guy. Dam scammers
scammers go away
September 18, 2019
just go the phone call from 1-800-534-1838
September 18, 2019
I just got the call from (800) 876-5397 stating the same as your recording but it was a female voice. I just hung up like I don't care.
September 18, 2019
I just got a similar scam call from 8000507622 today. They sounds very professional. Please help stop such scam. Thanks.
September 18, 2019
I got the exact call a bit ago!!! PLEASE STOP THEM!!!
September 18, 2019
I just receive a phone call saying that my social security was going was suspended due to strange activity and asked me to press 1 for more information. I did press 1 thankfully the person on the phone was really rude and i told him that i was not going to give any information before verifying their number. They called me from this number: 1(605)-009-9775
September 19, 2019
I received call too. The number that called me was 1(509) 210-2715
September 19, 2019
Today I receive two call to my cell phone with the ID # 1 854-227-6056 and 1 832-384-9908 the messanger was suspicious activity on my SSN account and it may suspend if not call back.
September 19, 2019
I had a very strange conversation with the SSM officer Saira Geiles from Carrolltton,TX this morning?! I am living in IL. Phone number was 469-701-9956 And all of it sounded very suspicious, I don't think that the SSA makes the calls about your SS and asks to tel them the number over the phone...
September 19, 2019
I just received a call from 1-808-213-1087 (Hawaii) asking me to call them back because my social security has been compromised and suspicious activity was noticed using my social security. If I don't call back I will have serious legal issues.
September 19, 2019
received another call today from a different number 888-582-9258 with the exact same threatening message. when will this stop
September 19, 2019
Same kind of message today 09/19/2019 with a female voice and from number 1 800 566 6532. The robocall went to my voicemail. Evidently, I didn't call back.
Steve Hoshel
September 19, 2019
‭+1 (844) 192-4249‬ Called an I answered but using Apple Watch they couldn’t hear me so hung up but said the same thing about suspicious activity under my social security number. Watch out and don’t give your number to anyone it’s definitely a scam I’ve done my research!
September 19, 2019
Received 2 calls from 2 800 numbers, both with same recording, saying from law enforcement agency and SS# has been suspended on immediate basis because of a suspicious trail of in on my name and benefits will be frozen permanently until we take care of it. Press 1 to speak to SS rep. I don't answer 800 calls so these both went to voice mail. The numbers called from are 800-991-8047 and 800-770-9764.
September 19, 2019
Got a call exactly like this today and I've been seeing it pop up on social media - a police officer even got a call. Such a scam. 800.053.1735 - not going to try to call them back.
September 19, 2019
I keep getting same calls from what exactly FBI is doing or whatever agency is responsible to tackle this crime
September 19, 2019
Got the call from 800-193-9797 for my SSN is blocked. Funny thing is my daughter is in Paris, and she got the same call too.
September 19, 2019
just got one from 209-102-4063
September 19, 2019
Just got the scam call from 1-800-874-1233. Hope no one out there actually replies and provides their SS#!
September 19, 2019
Just received call from 800-662-1875. It is a recording saying my Social Security is suspended and assets will be seized. I immediately hung up. This has got to be a scam. SSA does not usually call recipients and I am not receiving a social security check.
September 19, 2019
844-347-3921 2:00pm 9/19/2019 I answered cell because I was waiting for a call and thought this was the call. When I answered, a recording said it was SSA and they were immediately suspending my SSN for suspicious activity, and to press #1. I did not, and the call disconnected. I blocked the number.
September 19, 2019
I got a phone call today (9/19/2019) from caller who was identified in caller ID as "Spam Risk" 1-800-150-1670. It was not a real person. It was pre-recorded voice who informed me about fraudulent activities noticed related to my Social Security number. The voice asked me to press "1" for operator. I felt it is a strange call and I hung up.
September 19, 2019
Wow, first they called me from 262-888-1741, and then they called me again with same speech, only from 743-888-1741. Suddenly my cell phone is on some great big list getting sold to con artists, because, for 3 days, I am now getting lots of scam calls. Now is a call from 978-255-9851. Just what the heck is going on with you scammers, calling me so often in one day! No, no... just NO!
Sweet Potato
September 19, 2019
I have got call from these numbers +1-888-070-3960 and +1-888-813-5019 today claiming that they are from social security. I did enjoy the conversations with them(they are from India), I started asking them when they shifted US social security to India then they disconnected the call.
DR use your e-…
September 19, 2019
I just received the same threatening call a few minutes ago. But the call back phone# was 888-582-9258
September 20, 2019
Received the call on cell phone . Caller number was 800-998-9936. They're back!!!!!!!
September 20, 2019
Just got a call from 1 814 419 3261 saying the calling from SSA saying a legal enforcement action has been filed on my SSN for criminal activities under section 16 subsection 1028. So before this matter goes to the federal courthouse or before you get arrested. Please call immediately.
Al from Illinois
September 20, 2019
I have been receiving calls for the last week from an assortment of 888 numbers. All of them are the same - asking for me to call back to get in touch with a "Social Security Administration officer" because my account is in danger of being "blocked permanently". The automated voice has a distinct Asian accent. Do not fall for this people!
September 20, 2019
Recived a different call each day this week from a different #: (800) 282-0487, (800) 985-8208, (800) 078-4823, and (800) 113-8339 all claiming on my cell phone voicemail that my ss# had been compromised and to press #1 to avoid my ss# being deactivated.