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Avoiding Fraud and Scams

The U.S. Census Bureau is no longer collecting responses to the 2020 Census. We remain committed to protecting your data and privacy.

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A close-up of a census taker's hand holding a mobile phone.

Staying Safe at Home

As of October 16, the Census Bureau is no longer collecting responses to the 2020 Census, and census takers are no longer following up with homes. However, other surveys remain ongoing, including a survey to measure the accuracy of the 2020 Census. If someone visits your home after September to collect responses for a different survey, you can do the following to verify their identity:

  • First, check to make sure that they have a valid ID badge, with their photograph, a U.S. Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date.
  • If you still have questions about their identity, you can call 800-923-8282 to speak with a Census Bureau representative.

Census Bureau Communications

During the 2020 Census, you may have heard from us in a few different ways:

  • Visits. To ensure a complete and accurate count, census takers followed up with homes that did not initially respond online, by phone, or by mail. 
  • Phone calls. Census workers occasionally called homes to ask questions about their responses to the 2020 Census. The goal was to ensure that no person is left out of the census or counted in more than one place.
  • Emails. To ensure that everyone was counted in the 2020 Census, we updated our communications strategy to include email outreach in areas where many homes had not responded.

While the Census Bureau is no longer collecting responses for the 2020 Census, we may contact you to request your participation in other ongoing surveys:

If you're not sure if the communication you received is legitimate, Contact Us.

Other Ongoing Census Surveys

The Census Bureau is currently conducting multiple surveys, including the Household Pulse Survey, the American Community Survey, and a survey to measure the accuracy of the 2020 Census. Visit Are You in A Survey? to learn more about these other surveys and how they work.

Avoiding Scams Online

Phishing is a criminal act in which someone tries to get your information by pretending to be an entity that you trust. Phishing emails often direct you to a website that looks real but is fake—and may be infected with malware. A key way to identify scam websites is to look at the website address; if you think it may not be legitimate, don't click on any links.

All valid Census Bureau websites will always have ".gov" at the end. 2020census.gov continues to provide key information about the 2020 Census. My2020census.gov was the only direct website address for responding to the 2020 Census online. 

Throughout the 2020 Census, the Census Bureau never asked for:

  • Your full Social Security number.
  • Your bank account or credit card numbers.
  • Anything on behalf of a political party.
  • Money or donations.
  • Your citizenship or immigration status.

In addition, the Census Bureau will not contact you on behalf of a political party.

Please note: The Census Bureau is no longer collecting responses to the 2020 Census.

Reporting Suspected Fraud

If you suspect fraud, call 844-330-2020 to speak with a Census Bureau representative. If it is determined that the visitor who came to your door does not work for the Census Bureau, contact your local police department.