According to the newest Data Spotlight, 40,000 people reported losing a grand total of $148 million in gift cards to scammers during the first nine months of 2021.
A scam phone call may start with someone pretending to be from the Social Security Administration and threatening to freeze your bank account unless you buy gift cards to maintain access to your account. To “solve the issue,” they may also ask for you to stay on the phone with them until you tell them the number on the back of the gift card.
Please remember, the government or any legitimate organization will never demand some sort of payment with a gift card purchase. As the holiday season approaches, gift cards should remain what they are – gifts! Visit ftc.gov/giftcards for more information.