The Social Security Administration published an online form today for seniors to report they have been contacted by persons fraudulently claiming the scammers work for the agency.
“I am deeply troubled that our country has not been able to stop these crooks from deceiving some of the most vulnerable members of our society,” said Social Security Commissioner Andrew Saul.
The unveiling of the form came barely a month after Senate Aging Committee Chair Maine Republican Susan Collins complained to Saul in a letter Social Security’s response to impostor scams was lagging.
She urged the Social Security chief to add staffers in regional offices to handle the increasing number of calls and in-person visits from seniors complaining about the scammers.
In announcing the form, the agency noted Social Security phone scams are the #1 type of fraud reported to the Federal Trade Commission and Social Security.
“Over the past year, these scams—misleading victims into making cash or gift card payments to avoid arrest for Social Security number problems—have skyrocketed,” the agency alerted.
The announcement of the form stressed a real Social Security employee will never tell a senior his or her Social Security number has been suspended and never ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
The agency also assured Social Security employees will never threaten seniors.
“If there’s a problem with your Social Security record, Social Security will mail you a letter. If Social Security needs you to submit payments, the agency will provide instructions in the letter, including options to make those payments,” the announcement explained.