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Census-related scams are possible

Consumer protection officials warn that scam artists may try to take advantage of the 2010 Census drive to steal people's personal information.

Michelle Reinen of the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection says they've received calls from people concerned about suspicious mailers. Reinen says the best thing for people to do when they have questions about such forms is to go to the official U.S. Census website, and "verify what they received is what they should receive."

After the April 1st deadline, Census takers will go door to door to households that haven't mailed back a form. Official takers must show their ID with a Department of Commerce watermark and expiration date. They're not allowed to ask people for their social security card numbers, bank account information, or credit card numbers. They also cannot ask for donations or contact people through e-mail.

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