Personal information should never be put at risk of fraud or theft, but criminals are getting more and more creative with their strategies. Unfortunately, some people know how to take advantage of vulnerable people, and scam phone calls are one way to do this.
When a person applies for SSI or SSDI benefits, they have to share personal information. Documents such as a Social Security Card, birth certificate, passport, proof of income, proof of resources, living arrangements, medical sources, work history, and more are needed when applying. This is valuable information to scammers, and they will try to collect it from you via telephone.
Disability Associates is here to prevent that from happening. Here are a few ways to identify a scam phone call so that you never fall victim to fraud.
What Is Fraud?
Fraud is considered any action that involves obtaining important information through misrepresentation. Fraud in Social Security includes bribing employees for information, making false statements on claims, filing claims using another person’s social security number, impersonating employees, and more.
How To Identify Fraud / Scam Call:
Social Security rarely uses telephone calls to communicate with beneficiaries. They primarily operate by sharing information through social media, emails, and text messages. If a person receives a phone call from social security, it is usually due to confirming claims and legitimacy.
However Social Security contacts you, it is also important to note that they will never ask for financial information or personal information from you. Suppose you are asked any personal questions from Social Security over the phone. In that case, it is suggested that you not provide the requested information, hang up, and immediately submit a suspicious call report to the Office of the Inspector General. Social Security does not take these occurrences lightly, and these events must be recorded to further prevent them in the future.
How To Prevent Fraud:
There is no one exact way to prevent fraud from happening, as it can happen to anyone. However, there are measures that one can take to try and prevent it. For example, be sure never to say your Social Security Number in public or share it with just anyone. Do not carry around your Social Security card, and keep your guard up when receiving emails, links, texts, and other messages requesting information. Other ways to protect personal information include:
- Shredding papers with personal information listed
- Checking bank accounts regularly for suspicious activity
- Creating strong passwords for online banking to prevent hacking
- Installing anti-virus software on all devices
If you still have questions about identifying a scam phone call, or if you would like to learn more about our services, please contact Disability Associates today. Visit our website to contact us, or give us a call at 410.686.2227.