If you wish to learn how to freeze your credit report to help protect yourself from some forms of identity theft, then read on to know just how.

How To Freeze Your Credit Report

Benefits of Freezing Your Credit Report

  • Credit bureaus will no longer offer information to companies who try to access your information to approve credit or loan applications once your  credit report is freeze
  • If you want to freeze your credit report, you can do it for free at all three major credit bureaus.
  • After your credit report has been freeze, you’ll be given a PIN that you can use when you want to unfreeze or refreeze your credit report in the future.
  • Freezing your credit report does not affect your credit score.
  • You still have access to use your credit accounts and can monitor your credit even with a freeze.

How to freeze your credit report for free

Youcan freeze your credit report using various mediums they are;

Online

Freezing your credit report online through yourcredit bureaus website is the fastest way. To do this, create an account. All you need to create this account is your name, address, social security number, date of birth, and identity verification information.

Via Phone

Over the phone, you’ll be required to freeze your credit at the three major credit bureaus namely; Equifax (1-800-349-9960), TransUnion (1-888-909-8872) and Experian (1-888-397-3742). As you request a freeze, make sure you store the passwords you’ll need to unfreeze your credit in a safe place.

You’ll be required to provide any of these documents to validate your identification when you’re freezing your credit ;

  • 1099 form
  • Birth certificate
  • Military ID
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Social Security card
  • Pay stub
  • W2 form
  • Court documents for legal name change
  • Passport
  • Marriage certificate
  • Divorce decree
  • State ID.

One of these item will also be needed to validate your address:

  • Pay stub
  • Mortgage statement
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Utility bill with the accurate address (gas, water, cable, residential phone bill)
  • Cell phone bill
  • W2 form
  • 1099 form
  • Rental lease agreement/house deed
  • State ID
  • Bank statement

The federal law states that it can take no more than one business day for your freeze to take effect when you request for it online or by phone. For a request done via mail, it takes no more than three business days.

Freezing a Minor’s Credit Report

Parents can now freeze the credit reports for children under age 16 to keep their identities safe from being used fraudulently. Simply complete the Minor Freeze Request Form and offer information for the person whose credit you want to freeze. You’llbe required to show, that you have the authority to request the freeze. Minors who are 16 or 17, may request their own security freeze via phone or mail.

How To Lift and Unfreeze Your Credit Report

Once you’re ready to apply for a loan or credit card, you will have to temporarily lift the freeze, to enable the lender pull your credit report. You can unfreeze via the following mediums;

With Equifax

Online: You are to create MyEquifax account, if you do not have one already.

Phone: Call 1-800-349-9960

By Mail: Download a form from Equifax. Equifax will then lift the freeze once your identity has been confirmed. Mail to Equifax Information Services LLC, P.O.Box 105788, Atlanta, GA 30348.

Unfreezing With Experian

Online: Here, you’ll need to complete a simple form online.

By Phone: Call 1-888-397-3742

By Mail: Mail to Experian Security Freeze, P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013.

Unfreezing Your Credit Report With TransUnion

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