A recent audit by the Social Security Administration’s inspector general shows that the agency “did not have controls in place to annotate death information,” opening itself up to fraud and resulting in government waste.
CNS News reports nearly 6.5 million people born before 1902 and had their social security numbers used to open fraudulent bank accounts and apply for benefits. One example shows a bank account that was opened with the SSN of a person born in 1869.
Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Tom Carper (D-Del.), who head the Senate committee that oversees the Social Security Administration, said in a joint statement on Monday that the agency needs to clean up its files to prevent fraud.
“It is incredible that the Social Security Administration in 2015 does not have the technical sophistication to ensure that people they know to be deceased are actually noted as dead,” Johnson said. “This problem has serious consequences.”
Suggestions by the auditors to correct the inaccuracies were met with protests by Social Security management. “The recommendations would create a significant manual and labor-intensive workload and provide no benefit to the administration of our programs,” the management said in a response to the audit.