One of the most important things you can do when you’re not looking at any kind of financing is to put a freeze on your credit. We have a lot of clients that ask “How do I freeze my credit?” Some people may think this is something only for people who are paranoid or individuals who have already had their identity stolen. This is definitely not the case. With identity theft being a real threat in our society today and your credit score tied to you for all sorts of financing options and sometimes even careers, you need to know how to do this.
When you place a security freeze on your file, you will be provided a personal identification number or password to use if you choose to remove the security freeze from your file or authorize the temporary release of your credit report for a specific person or period after the security freeze is in place. To do this you must contact the Experian and provide all of the following:
- Enough information to verify your identity.
- Your personal identification number or password provided by the credit reporting agency.
- A statement that you choose to remove the security freeze from your file or that you authorize the reporting agency to temporarily release your consumer report. If you authorize the temporary release of your consumer report, you must name the person who is to receive your consumer report or the period for which your consumer report must be available.
- Then you select the state you need to file in from the drop down box.
- There are some fees involved for some states in order to place or remove the freeze so be aware of this.
- As soon as you pay the fee then the bureau places the freeze on the account.
Now Equifax appears to be a little more finicky about how they want the actual freeze submitted. Equifax states that they would prefer to have the credit freeze submitted by mail and the requirements to mail them out are listed here. They will give you a PIN just like Experian did and require you to verify your identity and there are fees that apply for each state just like Experian as well. If you’re worried about the integrity of your credit I would suggest following the procedures immediately.
TransUnion didn’t seem to have a lot of step by step instructions on how to place a freeze on your account but they did offer that you can file for it online here. You have to create a login and password if you haven’t already made one when you pulled your free credit report. Then you follow along with their questions and submit the info they need. Again, there is a small fee to place and remove the credit freeze on your account with TransUnion.
You Are In Control
The main reasons that you need to know how to do this is so that you stay in control of your financial health. Many individuals don’t realize how often identity theft happens and this can definitely help prevent that from happening. Now you know why it’s important to freeze your credit as well as the procedure in order to place them on your accounts.