A new identity theft scam is reportedly targeting seniors and disabled persons by rerouting Social Security benefits to their own bank accounts and prepaid debit cards. The objective of the scammers, relatively straightforward, involves obtaining personal information like a full name and bank account number, contacting the Social Security Administration and requesting that payments be rerouted to their own accounts.
One individual that fell victim to such a scammer 64-year-old William Combs, a disabled veteran from Brookville, Ohio. Identity thieves allegedly took both his tax refund and two months worth of Veterans’ disability benefits, as well as one of his Social Security disability payments.
Combs apparently notified each agency about the missing payments. So far, he has received his tax refund, but his still has not received $5,400 in Veterans’ disability payments. Fortunately, he did receive eventually receive his $2,000 Social security payment.
Social Security disability fraud can be quite disruptive to those who depend on their benefits to keep up on bills and support their family. The yearly cost to the federal government because of such scams is enormous. Unfortunately, these scams are all too often used as a vehicle to criticize not only the Social Security disability program itself, but also those who rely on their payments.
Those who feel they have become the victim of a Social Security disability scam should not hesitate to contact the Social Security Administration to achieve a resolution to their situation.
Source: CNN, “Scam targets seniors’ Social Security benefits,” Blake Ellis, September 26, 2012