Atlanta Residents Can Avoid 2010 Census Scams by Using Caution

What's more important than filling out the 2010 U.S. Census? Making sure that the form you're filling out is actually the census - and not an attempt to steal your identity, according to Atlanta bankruptcy attorneys.

Now, this isn't meant to discourage you from participating in the census. Remember, the more people that get counted in your community, the more federal money your community can receive. Besides, the sooner you get your official census form turned in, the better.

Procrastinating ups the odds that a census worker will follow up with you by calling or knocking on your door. Problem is, a phony worker could do the same, increasing your risk of identity theft. Here's how to tell the difference.

First, a real census form only contains 10 questions - none of which involve personal information, like money, social security numbers, bank accounts or credit cards. An official census worker might ask you some questions over the phone or in-person, but they will only ask about those original 10 questions.

Second, the census is only conducted two ways: by mail or directly with a census worker. So you know that any e-mail you receive asking you to electronically send information or fill out a form online is a fraud.

Not sure that a census worker is the real deal? If they stop by in-person, ask to see their U.S. badge. If you're still uncertain, give the Regional Census Center in Atlanta a buzz to verify their identity.

It pays to be cautious about giving out personal information, whether you're dealing with the census or not. Identity theft can disrupt your life, wreck your credit and leave you in debt. Fortunately, bankruptcy can help rebuild your finances. Whether your debt was caused by a scam, circumstances beyond your control or just bad financial choices, using bankruptcy to pay off debt can get your financial life back on track. Find out if there's a bankruptcy plan right for you when you sign up for a free personal debt analysis with a bankruptcy attorney in Atlanta.

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