Free credit freeze now federal law
On September 21, 2018 under a new federal law, the three big credit reporting agencies-Equifax, Experian and TransUnion-are required to offer you a credit freeze, free of charge. Such a freeze will restrict access to your credit file and help stop crooks from opening credit cards in your name. Under the new law, you can unfreeze your report at no cost too.
Also as of Sept 21, parents across the county are able to get a free credit freeze for children under age 16. A child’s credit file would be frozen until the child is old enough to use credit. Surprisingly, children’s credit is a big target for fraud because their credit is clean.
If you’re about to apply for a mortgage, a car loan or a student loan, don’t take out a credit freeze right before you think you’ll get the loan. Otherwise you’ll have to unfreeze again and it can take a day or two.
To freeze your credit, you need to contact each of the agencies individually. You can do this on line or by phone: Equifax 800.349.9960 www.freeze.equifax.com, Experian 888.397.3742 www.experian.com/freeze and TransUnion 888-909-8872 https://freeze.transunion.com
You’ll get a pin or password when the freeze is placed. You’ll need to write that down and keep it to use when you want to unfreeze your credit.