Be on the Alert for an aggressive phone scam that targets Federal annuitants: The scammer claims to be an OPM employee. The scammer threatens to end the annuitant’s retirement, threatens that a “magistrate” will criminally prosecute, and demands an immediate payment. This is a government imposter scam – Do not send money.
Any communication of this type is NOT from an OPM official. OPM will not make such calls. Scams like this one are carried out by skilled imposters, who may sound convincing. They may use real names and titles – and they may know a lot about their targets, including personally identifiable information. The scammers may alter the caller ID to make it look like OPM is calling. Scammers may also attempt to use email to “phish” for more information. Finally, these imposters may leave an “urgent” callback request. Don’t fall for it.
Signs of a SCAM (and these are actions OPM does NOT do):
- Call to demand immediate payment.
- Demand that you pay a debt first before any appeal.
- Request that you pay using gift cards, prepaid debit or credit cards, wire transfers, Western Union, MoneyGram, or PayPal, etc.
- Request for credit or debit card numbers over the phone or by email.
- Threaten referral to a Magistrate, the police, or law enforcement.
If you suspect the caller is an imposter:
- Do not engage with the callers. Simply hang-up.
- Note the date and time of the call, as well as the caller’s phone number.
- Report it to OPM’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG),https://www.opm.gov/our-inspector-general/
For Help and to Report suspected fraud:
- Call the OIG Hotline: 877-499-7295.
- Click to report online, Hotline Complaint Form
- Write:OPM OIG
1900 E Street NW, Room 6400
Washington, DC 20415-1100
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has a report on government imposter scams, https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0048-government-imposter-scams. You may also report suspected fraud to the FTC athttps://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/