A nice sounding professional calls from the government and reports that your Social Security number has been suspended, and with a little bit of information, they will reactivate it for you. Sounds okay right?
This is a common phone scam that people have been receiving lately. A caller or robocall will pretend to be a government official and state that your Social Security number has been suspended or deactivated due to fraudulent or criminal activity. The fraudster will then ask you to call a phone number to clear up the situation by simply providing some personal information. The fraudsters are trying to trick you into providing information such as your birth date, bank account numbers, social security numbers, and other sensitive information.
While the initial call may sound scary, remember your Social Security number cannot be suspended or deactivated. Below are a few tips to protect you from this phone scam and other variations of this scheme.
- Your Social Security number cannot be suspended or deactivated.
- The Social Security Administration will never threaten to arrest you.
- Never give out or confirm your personal information over the phone, via email, or on a website until you have fully verified who is asking for the information. Contact government agencies directly using phone numbers and website addresses you know to be legitimate.
- Remember, the government normally contacts people via postal mail. Unfortunately, mail scams are a common occurrence as well, and the same security precautions should be used with postal mail. Mail should be scrutinized and information validated before calling a phone number or visiting a website listed on the letter.
- Do not trust a name, phone number, or email address just because it sounds connected to the government. Fraudsters use sophisticated tools, such as fake caller ID and email addresses, to impersonate government officials.
Should you receive a scam phone call, do not provide any information and hang up immediately. You can report the call to the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov, so they are aware of current phone scams taking place.
Safeguarding your personal information is not just important, it’s vital to your business and ours. Should you have any questions about phone scams or protecting your financial information, please do not hesitate to reach out to a Customer Service Representative at 916-567-2899 or 1-800-564-7144 or by email at [email protected].