By Ryan C. Wood
As I have ranted about in the past there seems to be no end in sight to new scams. Is it just another day with yet another scam attempting to steal identities and your hard earned money? What adds injury to insult is sadly over the years I have filed a number of bankruptcy cases for people who were scammed out of thousands of dollars and left holding the bag. Yes, bankruptcy was the quickest, easiest and cost effective way to permanently resolve the problems. A new scam that I have now received three calls on my business phone lines is a recording alleging they are calling from the Social Security Administration and that “your” social security number is suspended for suspicious activity.
Phone numbers they used:
510-574-4462 – Spoke with Jeremy – He has no fears of being caught he said.
Please email me at: SSNscam@gmail.com with phone numbers you received social security administration scam calls from and I will add the phone numbers to this blog post. Hopefully the list will help someone else to not fall for this scam.
When you receive this call the recording says to press “1” for more information. Of course I press “1.” The first time I asked them, “How are you suspending a business’s social security number, because you know, you are calling a business phone number? This was very confusing to the person with the ascent I was speaking to. He then hung up on me. I then filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission on-line. The second time I just hung up on the recording given I was too busy to ask them questions. The third time, which was yesterday, I merely asked, “What is your name?” I immediately was told, “F_ _ _ Y_ _.” If you want them to cuss at you and hang up on you this is a good question to ask because that is what happened. Immediately asking them questions will get them to hang up. Ask them where they are located. Ask them their name. Unfortunately I did not write down the phone numbers used for the first and second calls. I did provide the phone number in my FTC complaint but did not keep a record of it separately.
So this is a horrible scam. First everyone is on edge about identity theft and their social security number. Second they are most likely targeting the elderly people receiving social security income. Not good. There are so many elder abuse scams out there it is despicable. Generally the way notice is provide by the government or similar agencies to a person about an problem or issues is by mail asking the person to call the government agency to discuss the issue. There is usually some sort of deadline to act and failure to act has consequences. A sort of scream or die type of notice procedure. The Social Security Administration is not going to repeatedly call you or harass you about something. They send you a letter, put the ball in your court, and if you do nothing it is on you.
Federal Trade Commission Warning
The FTC on September 13, 2018, issued a warning about this scam.
The problem is few people receive these warnings in time to prevent someone from being scammed. A good idea is to Google the phone number and see what you find before providing any information and calling the number back. Hopefully you are reading this now and before it is too late. Unfortunately we bankruptcy attorneys have filed bankruptcy cases to clean up identity fraud and debts incurred because of scams like this. What non-bankruptcy lawyers do not understand is in the real world fixing problems can take a very long time and cost thousand and thousands of dollars with no guarantee of success in fixing the problem forever. A bankruptcy discharge is an order from the federal court that is good forever (with a few exceptions but rare for a discharge to be revoked) discharging the legal obligation to pay a debt. Filing bankruptcy is the law and is a vary cost effective way to get rid of financial problems resulting from scams.
There is even an Internal Revenue Service imposter scam.
Filing Complaint With Federal Trade Commission or Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
If you receive a call like this please file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission or Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. To file a complaint please Google filing a consumer complaint with the Federal Trade Commission or similar search. It is not difficult and will take about 5 minutes or less to complete. You will receive an email confirmation that the complaint was received. I have never received a response from the Federal Trade Commission or a follow up phone call. That does not mean the FTC has not opened an investigation regarding the complaint. Maybe the FTC will issue a warning like the two provided in this article because of the information you provide them and help countless people not fall for a scam. You never know. If you do nothing though the scammers will just keep calling people and trying to steal their identities and money without any fear of reprisal. Not good.