Reader Alert: On Friday, June 14, Social Security released this statement on the website: “ALERT: Reports of a $600 payment increase in June are FALSE:  NO COLA increase will occur UNTIL January 2025.” I felt it was my duty to make you aware of this announcement.

Hello Toni: Since you deal with Social Security matters related to Medicare, maybe you can help me. In April, I received an email stating that I am to receive a $600 increase in my Social Security check, and I have not received that increase or any information by either mail or email explaining what day in June this increase will happen. Do you know who I should contact at Social Security to have my question answered? Thanks, Toni– James from Atlanta, GA


Great question because on June 14, Social Security’s Office of the Inspector General cautioning “the public to be keenly aware of the attempts from persons seeking to gain your personal information for you to receive a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) from SSA.”

The new COLA for 2025 will be announced in October. The COLA for 2025 will begin with your new 2025 Social Security check amount payable in January 2025.

James, you have been receiving bogus information. Visit to view the “Scam Alert” on the website or go directly to the full statement at

Inspector General Gail S. Ennis stated in the scam alert, “The annual cost-of-living increases issued by SSA are ALWAYS automatic. No additional information is required for you to receive the legitimate COLA increase.” Ennis advised recipients of the scam-related attempts to steal their identity, or their money, or both, to safeguard their personal information.

Social Security Commissioner Martin O’Malley advised America to “please be aware and don’t fall for this stunt.” O’Malley advised that SSA sends notices directly to beneficiaries in early December regarding the SSA amount for the upcoming January payments. Visit to view your COLA online once the new Social Security adjustment is announced.

Below are a few tips to help protect you against Social Security, Medicare, or IRS fraud:

  • Have a safety script by your phone for scam/fraud calls. Tell anyone, especially scammers, you do not give out personal information over the phone. (Get your kids or a friend to help you write your script.) Stick to the script no matter what!
  • For scam/fraud emails do not open the email or reply back. Just delete the scam/fraud email. If you are not comfortable with deleting the email yourself or if you are uncertain of its legitimacy, show it to your kids or friend who helps you stay safe.
  • Never give your Medicare or Social Security number to strangers who call you on the phone, come knocking on your door or ask for it in an email. Just like you tell your grandkids not to talk with or reply to email from strangers, you need not talk to them either. Play the “Stranger Danger” game for yourself.
  • Do NOT accept “free” offers in exchange for your Medicare number. Remember, nothing is “free.” These scammers will have Medicare pay for whatever they are offering, and they will use your Medicare number to get it paid for!

Social Security, Medicare and IRS fraud is exploding, so please let your friends and family members know what I have just told you. Americans need to stand together and stop those who only want to make a “fast dollar” from Medicare, your checking account/credit card and most of all from YOU!

For a Medicare Checkup, call the Toni Says® Medicare call center at 832/519-8664 or email Toni’s Medicare Survival Guide Advanced edition is available at Toni’s Medicare Moments articles have just been released at