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Credit Report Freeze - Stop Financial Identity Theft

Something I heard about which seems like the sort of thing some of my readers would be interested in is a Credit Report Freeze. It is a very good way to make it almost impossible to steal your identity. For some of you, the difficulties imposed would be minimal.

How it stops financial identity theft

If someone is trying to steal your identity, they begin by setting up new credit cards or renting a car or apartment using your name. They may try to establish credit in your name with utilities or other companies. Normally these things, require a credit check with one of the three credit bureaus. A credit report freeze stops the credit bureau from reporting back, making the impersonation impossible. When you freeze your report, you get a pin number you can use to unfreeze the report for a period of time or to remove the freeze entirely.

The Cost

  • Time setting it up and eventually unfreezing for a period. Most of which can be done online.
  • In Oregon, $10 for each credit bureau to freeze the reporting. $10 for each unfreeze or time period lift. So, $30 to freeze everything and then $10 when someone legitimately needs to run a credit check on you.

Who it could benefit. Who should not do it.

  • Could be useful: If you are older, have established your residence, don't buy new cars frequently, don't change jobs so really, no one has or will run a credit check on you for years
  • Probably isn't worth it: If you have credit checks run more than once every 2 or 3 years, then it probably isn't worth it.

Note!

Despite the fact that no one has run a credit report on me in years (other than my credit card giving me the information), and no one will for years (I'm happy with my house and car), I still didn't think it was worth the bother. Also, my Capitol One Quicksilver credit card reports my Transunion account activity every month with my statement, so I do have a monitor of at least that companies queries and new activity.

Good Resources if you are interested





Date: March 2015


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