Once again the US is gearing up for another Census. There are some cautions to take with regard to your personal information.
2010 Census Cautions
Be Cautious About Giving Info to Census Workers
With the U.S. Census process beginning, the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
advises people to be cooperative, but cautious, so as not to become a
victim of fraud or identity theft. The first phase of the 2010 U.S.
Census is under way as workers have begun verifying the addresses of
households across the country. Eventually, more than 140,000 U.S. Census
workers will count every person in the United States and will gather
information about every person living at each address including name,
age, gender, race, and other relevant data. The big question is - how do
you tell the difference between a U.S. Census worker and a con artist?
BBB offers the following advice:
** If a U.S. Census worker knocks on your door, they will have a badge,
a handheld device, a Census Bureau canvas bag, and a confidentiality
notice. Ask to see their identification and their badge before answering
their questions. And NEVER invite anyone you don't know into your home.
** Census workers are currently only knocking on doors to verify address
Do not give your Social Security number, credit card or
banking information to anyone, even if they claim they need it for the
U.S. Census. While the Census Bureau might ask for basic financial
information, such as a salary range, it will not ask for Social
Security, bank account, or credit card numbers nor will employees
Eventually, Census workers may contact you by telephone, mail, or in
person at home. However, they will not contact you by Email, so be on
the lookout for Email scams impersonating the Census. Never click on a
link or open any attachments in an Email that are supposedly from the
U.S. Census Bureau.
So, to recap:
Aks for identification all valid Census workers will have a badge-don't believe anyone if they say, "we don't need no stinkin' badges"
DO not give Social Security numbers, credit card or banking information
The 2010 Census will not use email for ANY type of contact with you. If you receive an email be aware. Someone is trying to scam you.
For more advice on avoiding identity theft and fraud, visit www.bbb.org.