The NYPD has issued an alert to warn people against phone scams in which callers are pretending to be the Social Security Administration or law enforcement agencies. There have been more than 200 complaints made regarding the scam, and people have reported losses of more than $2 million. In comparison, only three similar complaints were made all of last year.
Scammers tell victims their Social Security number has been used for illegal activities, such as drug trafficking or money laundering, or to open accounts. In order to deal with the situation, victims are asked for money “to help resolve the situation.” Scammers use prepaid gift cards, Bitcoin and bank wire transfers as their preferred payment method.