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Home > Tools & Resources > Identity Theft/Fraud > Fraud Alert - February 2016

**Fraud Alert** February 2016 - Scammers Fake Social Security Email


An email with the subject line that says "Get Protected," talks about new features from the Social Security Administration (SSA) that can help taxpayers monitor their credit reports, and know about the unauthorized use of their Social Security number. The email cites the IRA and the official-sounding "S.A.F.E. Act 2015."

Please be aware that this is a phishing email to get recipients to click on a scammer's link. If you receive this email and click on the link, malware like viruses and spyware can be installed on your computer. The link may also send you to a look-alike website set up by a scammer to trick you into entering your personal information.

If you receive an email and are unsure if it is really from the government, there are a few clues that can help you decide. Did the email end up in your junk folder? Email providers use filters to help catch phishing scams and spam from getting in your inbox. When you hover your cursor over the link, does it go to a trusted website? In the referenced fake Social Security Administration email when you hover over the URL that you are told to click on, the link goes to an unrelated ".com" web address instead of the SSA's or another ".gov" site.

If you are unsure about an email that looks like it is from the government, contact the agency directly. Do not use the contact information provided in the suspicious email. Instead, find the contact details from a reliable source.