Georgia On The Minds Of Identity Theft Scammers
By Tricia of Allsup
Have you heard about the phone scam that has surfaced in Georgia? Recently, a man received a call from someone claiming to be a Social Security Administration (SSA) employee who attempted to sell him insurance over the phone. In another instance, a woman said she received a call from someone who claimed to be with Social Security who asked for her birth date, Social Security information and other personal information.
These types of phone scams can lead to identity theft. Sometimes callers will reach out to Allsup, asking what they should do because they are afraid they have been scammed. SSA officials are advising individuals to remember: Never provide your Social Security number, bank account numbers or other personal information unless you are extremely confident about the identity of the person asking for it.
According to the SSA, their representatives generally do not make unsolicited calls and do request personal information.
Anyone can be fooled by professional con artists. And, Georgia isn’t the only state where identity theft can happen. Individuals with disabilities who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits and older individuals, in particular, may be vulnerable to these scams.
I hope that you never encounter a scam to steal your money or identity. But if you (or someone you know) receive a call or email from someone who claims to be from a government agency and requests your personal information—here are several ways to report fraud. You can also find more information online.
- Contact the SSA Fraud Hotline at http://oig.ssa.gov/report, or by phone at (800) 269-0271. Those with hearing impairments can call (866) 501-2101.
- To verify an SSA employee or request for information, call SSA customer service at (800) 772-1213. The TTY number is (800) 325-0778.
- The SSA Office of Inspector General offers tips on identify theft.
You also can contact the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov/idtheft or call (877) ID-THEFT, or (877) 438-4338.
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