The Winneshiek County Sheriff's Department has issued warnings earlier in the year about scams involving people pretending to be from the U.S. Census Bureau. But now the department is alerting the public to the fact that legitimate representatives of the Census Bureau might be contacting them through mid-August.
The Winneshiek County Sheriff's Department is offering the following tips to determine whether the caller is an actual U.S. Census Bureau representative:
Through mid-August, the Census Bureau will call households who have responded to the 2010 Census if it needs to clarify any answers about the number of people living at the address. These calls are simply to clarify answers that have been given and to make sure everyone is counted once, only once and in the right place. Not every household will receive a call. The Census Bureau estimates it may need to call about 8 million households over the four-month period. If you get a call:
--The caller will identify themselves as working for the U.S. Census Bureau and that the purpose of their call is to help the Census Bureau take the most accurate census.
--The caller ID will likely show "U.S. Census Bureau." If this text is not supported (such as on a cell phone), then the inbound toll-free number, (probably 866-851-2010) should show up. The exact number depends on the language skill for which the call is made. If a household would like to confirm they have been contacted by the Census Bureau, they could call (866) 851-2010 and use the eight-digit case identification number they were provided to complete the interview. The interview will take approximately 10 minutes.
--2010 Census takers will not ask you for your social security number, bank account number or credit card number.
--2010 Census takers never solicit for donations and will never contact you by e-mail.
--2010 Census takers will not ask about your citizenship status.
--The information collected over the phone, as well as provided on the census form or to a census worker in-person, is kept confidential by law, Title 13, U.S. Code - which is the same law that protects all information provided to census employees.
--If the interviewer calls and nobody answers the phone, he or she will leave a message requesting the household to return the call. In addition, a specific case identification number will be provided so the household can call back and complete the interview.