Data Privacy & Security
The information you provide as part of the census can never be used against you. It’s the law. Under Title 13 of the U.S. Code, the U.S. Census Bureau cannot release any information about you or others in your household. Your census answers can only be used to produce statistics.
Census employees and contractors are sworn for life to always protect your information. Violators face fines up to $250,000 and up to five years in prison.
Cybersecurity & Technology
The U.S. Census Bureau has a team of cybersecurity experts monitoring and protecting the bureau and your data. The bureau is legally required to keep all census data secure. To do so, the bureau works with the federal intelligence cybersecurity community and industry experts to keep all data locked down.
The bureau’s cybersecurity meets the highest federal standards for system protection. Your data are protected no matter if you respond online, by phone, or by mail. If a census worker helps you fill out your census form in-person, you can rest easy knowing that the technology they’re using meets the same federal security standards.
Scammers & Fraud
The 2020 Census will be collecting basic information about the people living in your household on April 1, 2020. Do not respond if you are asked for your social security number (SSN), bank or credit card information, your mother’s maiden name, money or donations, or anything on behalf of a political party. The U.S. Census Bureau will never ask for this information. If someone claiming to be from the U.S. Census Bureau contacts you via email, phone, or in-person and asks for any of this information it is a scam.
- If you receive a survey or letter in the mail check that the return address is in Jeffersonville, Indiana.
- If you receive a phone call you can call the U.S. Census Bureau at 1-800-923-8282 to verify whether the caller is an employee.
- If you receive an email or are sent a URL to respond to the census, make sure the website address begins with “HTTPS” and includes a lock symbol. If you receive a suspicious email or URL link, do not reply, click links, or open attachments. Forward the email to the U.S. Census Bureau at email@example.com and then delete it. The U.S. Census Bureau will investigate and report their findings to you.
- If you’re visited by a census worker ask to see their identification. They should have an official identification badge with their photo, U.S. Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date. If you have questions about their identity, you can call 1-800-923-8282 to speak with a local U.S. Census Bureau representative.
To help prevent members of your community from getting scammed we have provided an informative scam prevention flyer that can be used along with your census promotional materials.
Report Suspicious Activity
If the visitor who came to your door is not with the bureau, call your local police department.
If you hear false information about the 2020 Census or are wondering whether a rumor you heard is true, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.