Warning of documents that closely resemble the 2020 U.S. Census

At first glance, Eric Buscher figured a notice he received in the mail had to be the 2020 U.S. Census. But Buscher soon learned it was not and wants to warn others about the misleading document.

“I have filled out an earlier one too and it does look very similar,” Buscher said. “I mean, it’s on heavy card stock paper. You’ve got, you know, your bar codes. You’ve got questions with little boxes and everything.”

It turns out, the document was not the Census. Though, the letter Buscher received in the mail and the 2010 Census read nearly the same.

Attorney General Ashley Moody sent out a consumer alert with advice on how to avoid scams related to the Census. Scammers have used the mandatory count in previous years to take advantage of unwitting Floridians and steal personal information.

Two common types of scams, Moody warns, are when they might exploit information through phishing emails. At the same time, another frequent scam involves criminals who impersonate Census workers going door-to-door, according to the consumer alert.

In mid-March, Census questionnaires will be sent to most households, which means in Buscher’s case, the letter was sent out too soon to be an official mandatory count document.

“Turns out,” Buscher said, “it’s just a Republican fundraiser and trying to figure out people’s opinions on you know, the Republican Party and Trump.”

A conservative himself, Buscher is unhappy with his party.

“I feel that it was done in a conceiving kind of underhanded manner to try and get responses,” Buscher said, “as opposed to just saying, ‘hey, this is the Republican Party. We want your opinion on Trump.'”

The Republican National Committee told WINK News its mailing is clearly marked.

So Buscher is doing what he does with most of his mail.

“This is going in the trash,” Buscher said, “right after this interview.”

Reporter:Morgan Rynor
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