Wed. Oct 5th, 2022

This week, the State of California Employment Development Department warned Californians to be on alert for scammers who pretend to be EDD or Bank of America in an attempt to trick people into giving up personal information by text message. Neither institution will EVER text you asking for personal, identifying information.



Victims of Identity Theft

If you receive mail or a Form 1099G from the EDD, but you did not file a claim for benefits and you think someone else filed a claim under your name, address, or Social Security number, file a fraud report:

  • Benefit Fraud – Visit Ask EDD and select the Report Fraud category.
  • Form 1099G – Visit Ask EDD and select the Form 1099G category or call 1-866-401-2849, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., except on state holidays.

If we find you were a victim of fraud, we will remove the claim from your Social Security number and send you an updated 1099G, if needed. Review IRS tax guidance on benefit identity theft.

For more information about protecting yourself from identity theft, review the California Attorney General’s Identity Theft Information Sheets and Credit Scores and Reports.

Types of Fraud

Avoid Scams

Scammers attempt to get your personal identifying information for a number of criminal reasons, including applying for unemployment benefits in your name. By being watchful, you can help stop them and avoid identity theft. To protect yourself, follow these tips when communicating with the EDD or our contractors:

  • Do not respond to communication on social media or phone apps. The EDD does not reach out to claimants this way.
  • Do not respond to text messages. Text messages asking people to activate a benefits debit card by clicking on a link are scams. Bank of America and EDD never text message people to reactivate a debit card.
  • Make sure any website links take you to a URL with “.ca.gov” before selecting it.
  • If we call you, your caller ID may show “St of CA EDD” or the UI Customer Service number 1-800-300-5616 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • If you opted in for SMS text alerts, messages are sent from 510-74 or 918-06.
  • The EDD will not send representatives to your home.

For more tips, refer to What You Should Know about Unemployment Scammers (PDF).

Avoid Committing Fraud

You are committing fraud if you:

  • Make a false statement
  • Provide wrong information
  • Withhold facts

For more information, or to report the receipt of a fraudulent text, see: https://www.edd.ca.gov/about_edd/fraud.htm.

COVID-19-Related Fraud Updates

The implementation of ID.me to help us validate the identity of individuals filing a new claim for unemployment benefits is successfully helping us fight fraud on the front end of a claim. We are also using Thomson Reuter’s fraud criteria to validate other claimant information.

If you filed a claim and we need additional information, we will send requests through the mail or through your UI Online account.

  • The EDD wants to alert claimants to be aware of scammers at work trying to impersonate EDD and ID.me and get you to divulge your personal identifying information. 
    • If we call you, your caller ID may show “St of CA EDD” or the UI Customer Service number 1-800-300-5616 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • If you opted in for SMS text alerts, messages are sent from 510-74 or 918-06 to the phone number you included on your unemployment claim.
    • The EDD will not send representatives to your home or contact you via social media or other websites.

Note: The national credit reporting agencies Transunion, Experian, and Equifax are offering no-cost credit monitoring services through April 2022.

By Editor

Art Pedroza started Orange County's first political blog, the Orange Juice, back in 2003. He now publishes the top civic blog in Orange County - New Santa Ana, plus other blogs including New Anaheim, New Fullerton and the Irvine News Blog, as well as the OC Politics Blog.

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