January 22, 2014

PROTECT YOUR CREDIT by freezing it.

UPDATE: Reader G.L. Carlson emails:

A report from the field: We did this 10 years ago, and it is cheap, easy, and convenient. Free, in some states (Tn is one). The unexpected benefit is that one gets no (or almost no) offers of new credit cards (no ability to prequalify you, no offers). In most states, there is a minor fee ($10 or so) to set up, and a minor fee to remove, which can be done on a one-time or limited time basis. Today, it only takes a phone call. The only problem is that one must plan when one needs credit (that is, remove the freeze). When we refinanced, our bank moved a little too fast…and got denied access. They were surprised; we were delighted.

Of course, this does nothing for data breaches on existing accounts. But if you’re concerned that someone might try to establish a new account, unbeknownst to you, this is an effective, low cost countermeasure.

Good to know.

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