With the upcoming 2010 Census process beginning to ramp up, I wanted to share some helpful advice for my readers.
The first phase of the U.S. Census is underway and temporary workers have begun verifying the addresses of households across the country. Eventually, over 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.
Being the suspicious person that I am, I have a question…”How Do You Tell The Difference Between a U.S. Census Worker And a Scam Artist?” My fear is that most folks are law abiding and will offer up data that they shouldn’t because they want to comply with “Official Government Business”.
Here are some tips to protect yourself (especially sensitive data that could be used to access your credit):
- If an official U.S. Census worker knocks at your door, they will have a badge, a handheld device, a Census Bureau canvas bag, and a confidentially notice. Ask to see their ID and badge before answering ANY questions. Also, be smart and don’t invite anyone you don’t know into your home.
- Census workers are currently only knocking on doors to verify address information. DO NOT give out your Social Security number, credit card or banking info to anyone, even if they claim they need ti for the U.S. Census. If someone asks you for this info under the guise of “Official Government Census Business”…you can politely tell them to “Go Fcuk Themselves” or like we do in Texas, aim your favorite caliber “lead delivery system” and give ’em a count of three to get off the porch!
- REMEMBER, NO MATTER WHAT THEY ASK, YOU ONLY NEED TO TELL THEM HOW MANY PEOPLE LIVE AT YOUR ADDRESS – THAT’S IT!
- While the Census Bureau might ask for basic financial information, such as salary range, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR FINANCIAL SITUATION. A legitimate Census Bureau worker will not ask for bank account, credit card numbers, nor will employees solicit donations.
- Finally, the Census Bureau has decided to NOT work with ACORN on gathering this information. If you haven’t been following the news the past few months, this organization was finally caught on videotape performing highly questionable community service advisement.
Eventually, the Census Bureau may contact you via telephone, mail, or in person at home. They WILL NOT contact you by e-mail. So be cautious for email scams impersonating the Census Bureau. Never click on ANY link or open attachments in an e-mail that are supposedly from the U.S. Census Bureau.