The Internet and cell phones have opened communication up in a big way. Unfortunately, widespread access can lead to widespread scams that lead to identity theft. Sometimes identity theft begins with a simple phone call or email. Predators even may target vulnerable people who have applied for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Read on to learn more about how to protect yourself from SSDI scams.
Know Who Is Contacting You
Scammers may identify themselves as a representative from the Social Security Administration (SSA) in phone calls, texts, and emails. Be cautious about responding to anyone you don’t know, particularly if you were not expecting any phone calls from the SSA.
When callers present themselves as SSA reps, ask for their name and phone number. If they give you the information, call back to confirm who they are. As an additional precaution, call a main number for the SSA and ask if the caller is legitimate. Don’t just go by the number that pops up on your cell phone. Some scammers program their systems to appear as the SSA’s national customer service number instead of their own number.
The process is similar with emails and texts. When you receive an email, look at the originating address. If it includes ssa.gov, you’re probably safe. It still wouldn’t hurt to call the SSA to double-check. However, be suspicious of any unexpected texts about your SSDI claim.
Be Careful with Your Personal Information
Never give out your Social Security Number (SSN), banking information, or other sensitive personal information to strangers.
Scammers may tell you lies to get your information, including that:
- your benefits are about to be terminated,
- the SSA needs additional information about your claim,
- the SSA wants to increase your benefit payment, or
- your SSN is about to be deactivated.
Protect yourself from SSDI scams by being very cautious about providing personal information to anyone.
Hire a Disability Lawyer to Protect Against SSDI Scams
You can file an SSDI claim without a lawyer. You run the risk of making mistakes on your application and potentially delaying your benefits.
More importantly, though, your disability attorney can serve as a buffer between you and SSDI scammers. Communications from the SSA typically would also go to your attorney. If you receive calls or emails that confuse you, report them to your attorney before responding.
Protect Yourself from SSDI Scams. Know When and How to Apply for Benefits.
It helps to have someone in your corner. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have the experience and ability to take on your case. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. We assist clients throughout Southern California from our home office in Anaheim.