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U.S Social Security Agency Alerts About Phishing Scam

As per the Social Security commissioner Jo Anne Barnhart and Social Security inspector general Patrick O'Carroll Jr., the organization has got some information regarding an email titled "Cost-of-Living for 2007 update" and claiming to have originated from the SSA.

The message professes to provide details about a 3.3% net growth for 2007 and asks subscribers to update their confidential data, together with their Social Security details, via a Web connection. If they don't obey, the message declares that the SSA "will be compelled to freeze their account for infinite period".

After that the user is led to a fake site that's a copy of the official Social Security website. When there, the user is required to enter a password and give confidential data like his bank account, credit card details and Social Security number.

"I am livid that someone could aim innocent people in this way," averred Commissioner Barnhart. "I have requested the Inspector General to employ all the assistance in his power to locate and charge whosoever is pulling this scam."

O'Carroll advises the public to be cautious while giving confidential details. "You shouldn't ever give your Social Security number or confidential data online or by phone except when you are certain about the person to whom you are furnishing the details," O'Carroll added.

This is a typical case of "phishing," whereby criminals in search of easy money or to thieve the identity of users send mails claiming to be from an establishment such as a bank or federal agency. Thereby they endeavor to make the client unknowingly hand over Social Security or bank account details.

As per Grater Inc., the marketing research company, phishing frauds have been growing at a disturbing rate. Ever since 2004, American adults claiming to have got phishing e-mails have increased almost twofold, to 109 Million. However, less people lost cash in such attacks the present year than in 2005. Around $1,244 was lost in the 2006 phishing scam, in comparison to $257 lost last year.

Related article: U.S. Businesses Lose $712 Per Worker Due to Spam

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