Have You Filed For Social Security Disability Benefits? 2 Simple Steps To Protect Your Identity During The Process
If you've suffered a disability that will leave you unable to work for at least a year and you've applied for Social Security disability benefits, now's the time to protect yourself from scammers and identity thieves. You might not think that the two would go together, but they do. In fact, the information that you provided when you applied for benefits is the same information that scammers and thieves need to steal your identity right out from under you. Here are two simple ways to protect yourself from scammers and identity thieves.
Understand Email "Phishing"
If you used your email information to conduct web searches regarding Social Security benefits, you need to understand how email "phishing" works. Identity thieves get your email address. They then send you an email that looks official. In most cases, the email will contain a link that you're supposed to click on. The link will take you to a site that they claim pertains to "official" Social Security business.
However, it's actually a site that the scammers have set up to grab your personal information, including full name, birth date, and Social Security number. Once you've input all of that information, the scammer now has everything they need to steal your identity. Before you answer any emails, be sure that your name is clearly listed – it shouldn't be addressed to "dear sir/ma'am" or any other generic greeting. If it asks for you to provide personal information, don't. The Social Security Administration will never ask for that type of information in an email.
Use Caution in Regards to Phone Calls and Visits
If you've applied for Social Security benefits, and you receive a phone call or visit from a representative claiming to be from the Social Security Administration, proceed with caution. This is particularly true if they ask you to verify personal information. Never provide this type of information over the phone, especially if they've contacted you. Instead, hang up or close the door and call your claim representative at the Social Security office. They'll be able to confirm whether or not they had a representative attempt to make contact with you. If they cannot confirm that the representative was from their agency, you should contact local law enforcement as soon as possible.
If you've recently applied for Social Security disability benefits, you need to protect your identity. The tips provided above will help protect you from scammers and identity thieves. If you have questions regarding your application for benefits, be sure to speak to a Social Security attorney as soon as possible. For more information, contact a professional in your area or visit a website like http://gomezmaylaw.com/.