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Are People Posing as "Department of Home Affairs" Workers and Checking IDs for the Census?

There is a false rumor circulating online that individuals posing as workers for the “Department of Home Affairs” are going door-to-door to confirm that everyone has a valid ID for the 2020 Census — and committing crimes at homes they are pretending to canvass.

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This is a hoax that originated overseas.

The truth is, census employees are in neighborhoods across the country as they prepare for next year's census. However, census employees are not asking the public for any identification. Furthermore, it should be noted that the United States does not have a Department of Home Affairs.

Besides not asking the public for any identification, the Census Bureau will never ask you for your Social Security number, your bank account information, your credit card numbers, or for money and/or donations.

If you’d like to verify that someone in your neighborhood is an actual census taker, you can use the following information to help you avoid any potential scams:

What will a census taker be wearing when he or she comes to visit?

  • Census takers will have badges and briefcases indicating their affiliation with the Census Bureau. They may knock on doors and ask a few simple questions to verify the address for inclusion in the census.
  • Census takers will introduce themselves as a Census Bureau employee, show their official Department of Commerce ID badge, and explain the purpose of the visit. If you still have questions about their identity, you can call 800-923-8282 to speak with a Census Bureau representative.

 

A census employee shows a homeowner her official Department of Commerce ID badge.

What should I do if I suspect someone does not work for the Census Bureau?

  • Contact your local police department, and call 800-923-8282 to speak to a Census Bureau representative.
  • If you feel there is anything else the Census Bureau needs to know, reach out to rumors@census.gov.