CROMWELL, Conn. - Scammers are taking notice of the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for recipients of Social Security benefits and Supplementary Security Income (SSI). It’s a significant increase – the highest COLA approved in more than 40 years.
Scammers have contacted victims by phone, text, or email pretending to be a “Social Security Administration (SSA) representative," claiming to their targets that they must apply for their cost-of-living increase. Victims are asked to visit a website, send information via text or email, or speak with the scammer on the phone to get the benefit. These con artists often ask their victims to verify their identity by sharing personal details, such as their full name, address, or Social Security number. They may even ask for their bank account information, claiming that the representative will deposit the extra money directly into their account.
Giving this information to a scammer gives them access to a victim's most sensitive personal information and makes them susceptible to identity theft. If a person gives up their banking information, a bad actor may gain access to their money.
How to avoid Social Security scams