Scammers may impersonate the Social Security Administration

Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota is warning people to be on alert for suspicious calls from scammers claiming to be from the Social Security Administration. BBB has experienced a recent uptick in reports of these types of scam calls, which can catch people off guard and be quite deceiving.

Here’s how the scam works: You answer the phone, and it’s someone claiming to be from the Social Security Administration (SSA) or another government entity. The name on your caller ID may even back up that claim. The caller may say there’s an issue processing your social security payment, or perhaps your social security number has been used to fraudulently apply for a credit card or commit another crime. In order to fix the situation, the caller says they need you to confirm your SSN and other personal information. If you don’t cooperate, the caller threatens to take you to court or have your Social Security number blocked or revoked.

These stories are designed to induce fear. Scammers hope that under pressure you will tell them your SSN and other sensitive personal information. Range Here’s how to avoid the announced scam:

• The SSA will never call
you asking for your Social
Security number. They
will never ask you to pay
anything, nor will they
threaten your benefits. The
SSA will only contact you if
you have explicitly requested a call.
• Never give personal
information to unsolicited
callers. If someone contacts
you without your permission, refuse to tell them any
personal information.
• Don’t always trust your
caller ID. The internet has
made it possible for scammers to use fake IDs when
they call your home. If you
receive a suspicious call,
don’t make any important
decisions based on what
your caller ID says.
• If you are concerned
about a call you received
from someone who claims
to be with the SSA, you can
call the real SSA at 1-800-
772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-
0778).

If you’ve been targeted by this scam, help others avoid the same problem by reporting your experience at www.FTC.gov/Complaint and www.BBB.org/Scam- Tracker.

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