I’d like to think I’m pretty careful with my credit. I monitor my credit score. I don’t make purchases with a credit card or log in to sites that store my personal information while on public WiFi networks. I get regular updates and alerts from a popular credit app.
But when I had my second fraudulent credit inquiry in as many days, I decided it was time to take it a step further and freeze my credit.
Freezing your credit will require that you be a little more organized than usual. You will need to create an account and log in to each of the three bureaus — TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian — and manually freeze your credit for each one. You will need to remember passwords and personal pin numbers for each of those three. And when you want to apply for a mortgage, buy a car, or open a new credit account, you have to manually go in and temporarily unfreeze your credit.
However, in my opinion, it’s worth it. And the good news is, as of September 2018, a new law has mandated that all three credit bureaus allow free credit freezes in all 50 states (whereas, previously only 9 states mandated free freezes and the bureaus could charge a fee for credit freezes in the other 41).
If you want to put some extra (and FREE!) protections in place for your own credit, here are the sites for you to create your account and freeze your credit:
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