Credit Freeze Part II
Before you read, please read Part 1 of 2
What is a credit freeze?
Many states have laws that allow consumers to “freeze” their credit – in other words, to restrict consumers from accessing his or her credit report. If you freeze your credit, potential creditors and other third parties will not be able to get your credit report unless you temporarily freeze it. This means that an identity thief can not open a new account on your behalf. Freezing your credit will not affect your credit score, nor will it affect your receipt of a free annual credit report, or the purchase of a credit report or rating.
The law of credit freeze varies from state to state. In some states, anyone can freeze their credit profile, while in other states only an identity theft can work. The costs of placing, temporarily lifting and canceling a credit freeze vary. Credit in many countries freezes for the victims of identity theft, while other consumers pay for it – usually $ 10. It is also important to know that these costs are for each credit reporting agency. If you want to freeze your credit, that means freezing the freeze with each of the three credit reporting agencies and then paying each credit reporting agency.
Who can access my credit report if I freeze credit?
If you freeze your credit, you will continue to receive your free annual credit report. Even after a credit freeze, you can purchase your credit report and credit score. Companies with whom you do business still have access to your credit reports, such as your mortgage, credit card or mobile phone company, just as those who work in these companies. The company will also be able to provide you with pre-screened credit. These are the credit quotes you received in the email, you did not apply. In addition, in some states, potential employers, insurance companies, landlords and other non-creditors can still get credit reports and freeze credit.
If I need to have someone check my credit report, can I temporarily lift the credit freeze?
If you want to apply for a loan or a credit card, or if you want others to access your credit report, and there are no exceptions to this credit freeze law, you need to temporarily cancel your credit hold. You will complete the credit freeze by using the PIN number sent by each credit reporting agency. In most states, you have to pay a fee to lift the credit freeze. Most states now offer credit reporting agencies a three-day credit freeze. This may prevent you from getting “instant” credit, which may be important when considering a credit freeze.
Credit freeze cannot do?
Although a credit freeze helps prevent identity thieves from opening most new accounts on your behalf, this is not the solution to all types of identity theft. For example, an identity thief using an existing credit card or other accounts will not protect you. There are also new accounts, such as phone, wireless and bank accounts, ID card thieves can open the account without a credit check. In addition, some creditors may open an account without obtaining your credit report. Moreover, if identity theft has occurred while the credit is frozen, the freeze itself will not be able to stop it. Although a credit freeze may not protect you in this situation, it can protect you from most identity theft involving the opening of new lines of credit.
What is the difference between a credit freeze and a fraud alert?
Fraud alerts are another tool for people who use identity theft, or who suspect they may be stolen. With a fraud alert, businesses can still check your credit report. Depending on whether you provide a 90-day initial fraud alert or a deferred fraud alert, potential creditors must contact you or use “reasonable policies and procedures” as the law warrants your identity before you can issue a credit card on your behalf. However, steps taken by potential creditors to verify your identity may not always remind them that the applicant is not you.
On the other hand, a credit freeze will prevent potential creditors and other third parties from accessing your credit report unless you have been lifted or have established a relationship with the company. Some consumers use credit freeze because they feel they give more protection. Like the credit freeze, fraud alerts are mainly valid for new credit accounts opened in your name, but may not prevent the thief from using your existing account or opening a new account, such as a new phone or wireless account, where Credit is usually not checked. Moreover, fraud warnings may only be issued by those who have stolen ID cards or suspected of being stolen. In some states, anyone can freeze credit.
What is an identity theft report?
The identity theft report is one more police report than usual. The Identity Theft Report contains detailed information about the criminal activities of credit reporting companies and related businesses to confirm that you are the victim and to know which accounts and information are inaccurate from identity theft. Normal police reports often do not have much detail about accounts opened or abused by identity thieves.
A printed copy of your Identity Card Theft Complaint Form may provide additional details as reported by the police. The police do not legally need to use the FTC’s Identity Piracy Complaint Form as part of its report. Your police department may have another way to organize your criminal details. In these cases, the police report itself can serve as an identity theft report. When you submit an identity theft report, the credit reporting company will permanently prevent fraudulent information from appearing in your credit report. Submitting an identity theft report to a company that uses your information with a credit reporting company or a thief should ensure that the debt does not reappear in your credit report. Identity theft reports prevent companies from continuing to try to collect debts resulting from identity theft or sell them to others for collection. It also allows you to place an extended fraud alert on your credit report. The credit reporting company may deny your identity theft report if it does not contain enough detail to confirm that you are the victim of identity theft. In this case, the credit reporting company will have some time to respond to your identity theft report and ask for more information.
Creating and using an identity theft report can take two steps:
The first step is to submit a report to a local, state or federal law enforcement agency. These agencies may include your local police department, your state attorney general, the FBI, the U.S. Secret Service, the Federal Trade Commission, or the U.S. Postal Service. Some state laws require local police departments to report, but no law requires federal agencies to report.
In your report, you should provide as much information as possible about the crime, including what you know about the theft, fraudulent accounts, and so-called identity thieves. If you file an online complaint with the FTC, you may be able to help provide the necessary details and then ask the local police department to include a copy of the printed identity theft complaint in their police report.
The second step, when you send a report about the company’s identity theft involves business and credit reporting, you should pass a certified email, please return the receipt you received. The company may ask you for more information or documentation to help them verify your identity theft. They must make a request within 15 days of receiving your identity theft report. The credit reporting company or business has another 15 days to work with you to make sure your identity theft report contains everything they need. They also have the right to review any information you give them for five days. For example, if you provide them with information 11 days after they are requested, they will make the final decision by day 16.
How do I get an identity theft report? Police officers who receive a police report may attach or include your identity theft complaint in their police report to add more detail. Ask the officer to give you a formal police report containing or attaching your ID theft complaint. In some places, police officers will not be able to provide you with a copy of the official police report but should be able to sign a copy of your Identity Theft Complaint and write a police report number in the Law Enforcement Report section. Be sure to keep a copy of the police report Police does not legally need to use the FTC’s Identity Miscommunication Complaint form as part of their report. Your police department may have another way of including all the details of your identity theft message in your police report. In these cases, the police report itself can serve as an identity theft report.
Due to the need for detailed identity theft reports for many important protections, you may want to use the “law enforcement cover letter” to explain to the police department the importance of getting your police report – and legal protection for detailed identity theft reports to you.
How to submit my Identity Theft Report to businesses that credit reporting companies or thieves use my information? When you send a copy of the Identity Theft Report to the Fraud Department of the Big Three Credit Reporting Corporation, attach a copy of the cover letter of the credit reporting company along with a copy of your supporting documents. Send your message via a certification email and request a receipt. The mailing address for sending an identity theft report to the three major credit reporting companies is on the cover letter. Include a copy of the identity theft report, your proof of attachment, and the appropriate cover letter when fraudulently using your personal information to identify fraudsters at each company: Fraudulent new accounts. This information is always sent via a certified email with a receipt request. Credit reporting companies have some time to respond to your identity theft report and ask for more information.
What should I do if the police only report identity theft over the Internet or by phone?
A special part of the Federal Trade Commission identity theft complaint is not the police report that is submitted face to face to help you use it to supplement an automated police report. If you submit a police report online or by phone, complete the “Automatic Reporting Information” section of your Identity Theft Complaint. A copy of any confirmation submitted from the police is attached. However, if you have the option, you should submit the police report yourself and do not use automated reporting. Consumer Reports It is more difficult for companies and information providers to validate information in automated reports, and they may require additional information and/or documentation.
What should I do if the local police do not report the case?
At the federal, state and local levels, efforts are being made to ensure that local law enforcement agencies understand the importance of identity theft, the impact on victims and the police report. However, we still hear some departments did not report. If you encounter difficulties, the following tips may help you to get reports:
Provide law enforcement officials with a copy of Law Enforcement Letter explaining why police reports and identity theft reports are important to both victims and industry.
Provide as many documents as possible to prove your situation. Debt collection letters, credit reports, printed complaints of identity theft, and other evidence of fraudulent activity can help prove the legitimacy of your case. Provide the police with a copy of “Make up for identity theft”, which shows that the police report is necessary to protect your rights.
If local authorities tell you they cannot report it, stick to it. Emphasize the importance of police reporting; many creditors demand that your dispute be resolved. Remind them that the consumer reporting company will automatically prevent fraudulent accounts and bad debts from appearing on your credit report, but only if you can give them a copy of the police report. In addition, police reports may be required to obtain fraudulent applications and other records from the company.
- If you are told that identity theft is not a crime under your state law, please submit a miscellaneous incident report.
- If you cannot let the local police report, try your county police. If not, try your state police.
Some states require the police to report identity theft. Check with your State Attorney General’s office at www.naag.org to see if your state has this law.
How can I prove that I am the victim of identity theft?
An application or other transaction related to the theft of your identity may help you prove that you are the victim. For example, you may be able to show that the signature on the application is not yours. These documents may also contain information about the identity theft of law enforcement valuable information. By law, if you submit your request in writing and attach a police report, the company must provide you with a copy of your identity theft related application or other business transaction record. Read more about getting information from the business and using this model letter to request this information.
Should I apply for a new Social Security number?
In some cases, Social Security may issue a new social security number to you at your request, and continue to experience problems if you try to resolve the problem that comes with identity theft. Carefully consider this option. A new Social Security number may not solve your identity theft problem and may create more new problems. For example, a new social security number does not necessarily guarantee a new credit history because the credit bureau may combine the credit history of the old social security number with the credit history of the new social security number. Even if the old credit information is not associated with the new social security number, there is no credit history below the new social security number which may make it harder for you to get credit. Finally, there is no guarantee that new social security numbers will not be abused by identity thieves.