Kiwis are being targeted by fake social media accounts, claiming to represent Census 2023.
“We know scammers target large events, using the opportunity to harvest information and sometimes even defraud people out of money,” says Rob Pope, director of Crown cyber-security agency Cert NZ.
Stats NZ has already spotted, and had removed, fake accounts trying to imitate the official Twitter channel, whose handle is @2023Census.
The following are the only official Census 2023 social media accounts and websites:
“You will not receive any unsolicited text messages or private messages on social media from the Census team,” says Simon Mason, Stats NZ’s deputy chief executive for Census and collection and operations.
“If you see a social media account that you suspect is fake, report it to Cert NZ immediately,” Mason says.
“The same applies if you receive an email, phone call, text message, or instant message from someone claiming to be from Census asking for financial details – these are all scams and should be reported to CertNZ,” Mason says.
CertNZ can be contacted via forms on its website or by calling 0800 CERT NZ (0800 237 869).
Census day is tomorrow, March 7, with Stats NZ following up on laggards through to the end of April.
There is also an extension to June for people affected by Cyclone Gabrielle and other recent weather events.