As more and more people become dependent on technology, the chance of your finances being attacked through cyberspace is increasing tremendously. And one of the most common and devastating ways this happens is through identity theft using your credit. While someone posing as you with your personal information to open new lines of credit can wreak havoc on your finances, it’s also one of the easier crimes to prevent.
Freezing your credit is one of the most effective ways you can fight against identity theft through cyberspace. It blocks access to your credit file making it impossible for someone other than you to open new financial accounts in your name. And, you’re the only one that can lift the freeze prior to having new creditors access your credit reports for legitimate reasons.
How do you freeze your credit? A request for a credit freeze must be done through all three credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Conveniently, each bureau allows you to request a credit freeze online or over the phone. Be prepared to provide your name, address, date of birth and Social Security number. After a few questions to confirm your identify, you’ll be provided with a PIN that you can use to unfreeze and refreeze your credit as needed.
Keep in mind that you’ll need to unfreeze your credit with each bureau every time you want to open a new account. So allow for some extra time in the application process to get this underway. But this cost-free way of protecting your finances will provide you with a lot more peace of mind and keep your credit cyber secure.
Secure Your Credit With a Freeze
February 03, 2021