I received the SSN scam today. I seriously cannot believe how sophisticated they are getting. The call came into my cell phone with the caller ID saying “Social Security Administration”. I immediately knew it was a scam, but I like to know what they are doing, so I answered it. It was a recorded voice that told me my SSN was compromised and my assets are being frozen. If I would like to speak to a representation, to press one. So I did. I pressed 1. The music started playing and I was on hold for around 4 minutes. I had heard enough.

SSN Scam

Here is what I think was happening. While I was on hold, I was being transferred to the phone number of the scammer. I’m certain they were “spoofing” the social security administration number, and I was going to get a person on the line that is going to ask me for sensitive info. First thing they will want to know is what social security number I am calling about. Then they will want my date of birth, address, etc, and before you know it, I will be a record for sale on the dark web. Ouch. Identity theft. This is one of the ways in which it happens. Just for fun, I googled it and found out that this neat little trick is not new, and goes back as far as 2009. Here are some of the things people posted about this SSN Scam.

From Google

  1. Received a call from 800-772-1213 and someone speaking very poor English left me a message to call as the SSA needed some additional information from me. I was left the telephone number 253-333-8277 for the return call. I went to my local SSA office and was advised the SSA uses groups around the US to handle online queries. I was given the telephone of a different person to contact.
  2. Received a call from this number saying they were with the Selenas, CA social security office and had info regarding my social security claim. They left a “direct line” number which was 1-866-670-4735. I called back saying I made no claim in California and do not live there. They asked if my ex-husband made the claim, don’t have one I said. They said they needed to look up my info by ID, then they asked for my social security #, totally without thinking as I was at work, like a dumb–ss I gave it!! Then they asked for my full name, calling me Francis. (My name is not Francis.) I told her I made a huge mistake just giving her my social #, and how did I know they were ligit. She claimed Well we are the Social Security Office, and how can we find your info without your name and numbers. I hung up and called the Social Security Government Office. She told me it was most likely an Identification Theft scam and I should call the Trans Union offices to report it immediately!
  3. I received a call today from a woman claiming to be from Social Security. She wanted to let me know that my disability benefits had been approved without the need to go to a hearing. She told me I could either receive a paper check in the mail, which obviously would take several days to a week, of if I would give her my bank account / routing info, they could make a direct deposit immediately. I told her I was reticent to give her that info over a cell phone, so she gave me the 800-772-1213 number to call and said give them the info and tell them it was an “MDW’ claim. She then gave me another number, 816-936-4555, and asked me to call her back to let her know when I had given the bank info to the people at the 800 number’s office. She said she would then be able to call up the info on the computer to go forward with the direct deposit of the money into my bank account. She told me her name was “Mary Jean.”I called my attorney’s office and told them about the call and they said they would look into it to determine if Soc Sec had indeed make a decision. They said this is not the normal way that Soc Sec would notify a person about the status of a pending case.At this point I have not received a call back from my attorney’s office, so I have taken no other action. I then received a call-back from the Mary Jean person asking me if I had called the 800 number yet, and I told her no, I had not. She said “Ok, then, I’ll just go ahead with processing this as a request for a paper check to be mailed to the recipient’s home address. She did not ask me for that info, and I did not offer it. She said I would receive the check sometime early next week. Today is Thursday, so I should get a check early next week.”This whole thing seems a bit odd and scammy to me. I am waiting for my attorney to call me back to let me know if this is legit, or if it is not. I did call the 800 number myself and it was a completely automated answering service type system that purported to be Soc Sec. It sent me through a maze of choices to make using my keypad on my phone or speaking the right words after listening to a list of selection possibilities. It all sounded very Soc Sec like, but when I got to the part asking me for my Soc Sec number, I then hung up. Did not want to go further if this is truly a scam.Suggest you not give out info on this 800 number and instead you should contact Soc Sec directly by calling the number of your local Soc Sec office (or whichever branch is processing your claim). Or you could call your attorney, as I did, to let them handle the call and get back to you. I suggest caution if urged to call this number.

So there you go! Never, and I mean NEVER give anyone information by phone. Identity theft is a deep hole to have to climb out of.