Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

TransUnion to Offer Credit Freezes Nationwide

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the invisible-credit-score dept.

Security 174

An anonymous reader writes "In a little-noticed press release issued Tuesday, credit reporting bureau TransUnion said it would begin offering credit freezes to all Americans, a change the belies the credit industry's oft-uttered claim that doing so would be too expensive and burdensome. The program takes effect Oct. 15, 2007, will cost $10 each to place and to remove, and request and must be filed by certified mail. As The Washington Post reports, the move comes as some 39 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws entitling their residents to credit freeze rights. The new right may have little benefit unless the other two major credit reporting bureaus follow suit, and both companies are staying mum about any plans to do so. In May, Slashdot examined a related story on the credit bureaus' traditional resistance to freeze laws."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Too lazy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676007)

For me and all the other readers too lazy to read up on this, can someone succinctly summarize what this means for us, what's bad about it, and what's good.

Re:Too lazy... (5, Informative)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676053)

You can put a lock on your credit report so that new accounts cannot be opened.

Re:Too lazy... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676173)

It means that someone, who has an infinitely larger amount of knowledge about that industry than any Slashdotter, has figured out that they can make the same amount of profit off of the same amount of data while still allowing a percentage of their data generating population to entertain a false sense of fairness/security in the system by saying,"Oh, good, I can freeze my credit report with agency XYZ. That solves _EVERYTHING_!"

It's a PR move made by extraordinarily wealthy people trying to shore up their public image.

Simply put all of the conventional wisdom about freezing credit reports, and all of the hyporthetical armchair conjecture about identity thieves, and all of the poster children who pop up in news articles and brochures saying,"I froze my credit and, not only did it save my life, but it walked my dog, buttered my toast, and installed Gentoo for me!" are a decoy. Nobody knows the inner business workings or dealings of the major credit bureaus at the executive level and the credit bureaus, along with the executive level members of the banking institutions which they work with, like it that way. They'll keep offering you bread and circuses ("You can now freeze your credit report" "OMG! That's going to totally revolutionize the economic system and make all of the executive level fraud, insider trading and political graft suddenly disappear!") as long as the American public continues to generate profit and support their multibillion dollar facade.

Truth hurts. Cue the whimpering cries from trolls screaming "where's the evidence!" in agony. :)

Re:Too lazy... (1)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676335)

People don't care about corporate corruption. Corporate corruption doesn't ruin their lives. Their life savings vanishing and finding themselves in a million dollars of debt 5 years before retirement does.

Re:Too lazy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676447)

People don't care about corporate corruption. Corporate corruption doesn't ruin their lives.

Yeah, sure. Try telling that to everyone whose lives were destroyed by the Enron debacle, for starters. Then when you get out of the hospital, we can start you on talking to victims of corruption in the health industry, Savings and Loan scams, the insurance industry, and then just proceed from there.

Re:Too lazy... (1)

Chmcginn (201645) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676489)

For anyone to lose their entire life savings because of Enron meant that their entire life savings was is one company's stock. This is not sound financial planning.

Re:Too lazy... (1)

umghhh (965931) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678201)

what about half of the life savings. Or third of it? Would it do? This still can push you over the border to poverty even if not immediately. Unless of course you will decide to take justice into your own hands and spend the remaining parts of your life in federal prison for murder then you will not live in poverty. Choice is yours.

Re:Too lazy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20677345)

and do it in a 30 second sound bite.

Confused... (2, Interesting)

Jennifer York (1021509) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676049)

I must have missed something... but how does freezing your credit history help with identity theft? And doesn't that defeat the purpose of having a credit history? I mean a history is used to determine if I pose a credit risk to the lender...

1) I ask to freeze my credit history
2) My history is frozen
3) ???
4) profit

Anybody able to distill this into simple terms for us?

Re:Confused... (3, Informative)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676079)

it helps when it keeps the people who stole your identity from opening more accounts

Re:Confused... (1)

glwtta (532858) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676087)

I'm assuming it's a temporary thing designed to limit the damage done to your history as a result of identity theft. I would assume that it would have to be in the unfrozen state for you to accomplish something that requires a credit check (eg apply for a mortgage).

Fast thaw (1)

Joaz Banbeck (1105839) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676257)

Some states have a law requiring that the credit reporting companies 'thaw' your credit within 15 minutes of you requesting it. For a few bucks, you can thaw, be checked, and refreeze in one day.

Re:Fast thaw (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677011)

Depending upon ones jurisdiction, it could be free or it could cost money.

My guess is that by providing the service in states that don't have credit freeze laws that they are hoping to get a few to freeze the accounts, then a fee each time they thaw it out for a credit provider.

Re:Fast thaw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20678465)

few = 20

Re:Confused... (3, Insightful)

sowth (748135) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677223)

How can this be? You need a registered letter to freeze the account, yet a telephone call from your identity thief will "thaw" your account within 15 minutes and allow him/her to run wild with your credit again...

I don't see how this will do anything to slow or stop this kind of fraud.

Re:Confused... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676099)

1) I ask to freeze my credit history
2) My history is frozen
3) ???
4) profit


3a) identity thief attempts to open an account in my name
3b) identity thief fails to guess the secret password needed to mail in and unlock my account
3c) identity thief's credit line is denied.
3d) my credit record is safe, allowing me to unlock the credit when I actually do need it and...

In simple terms, it makes sure nobody else can attach lines of credit to you. The credit bureaus hate this because every time someone verifies your credit, they make $50 or so, which means that they have a financial interest in making sure as many people as possible can access your credit as often as possible. If they only made money when people were legitimately applying for a credit card or a mortgage, they'd never be able to pay their CEO the millions of dollars he deserves.

You've all got it wrong, its like this: (5, Funny)

Gary W. Longsine (124661) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676439)

1) Lobby Congress with many millions of dollars over many years so that your industry, an entirely artificial creation of oligopolies over which you have no influence, can fuck up your life with their piss poor security and even random errors in their "system" 2) Watch as consumers get their lives fucked up when bad guys exploit an entirely different but also screwed up monopoly that entered your life and over which you have no control or influence (Windows) 3) Charge people a fee every time they need to "start" and "stop" your "service" to protect them from item 2 4) Profit!

Re:Confused... (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676543)

Ah, dammit, so *that's* what comes before "Profit!" THANK YOU! It finally makes sense now!

Re:Confused... (1)

talledega500 (994228) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677459)

And another thing,

Even after "unlocking" your credit do you think a creditor is going to ignore that
your credit has been locked and look favorably on you?

NO WAY. You will be dinged. How do they know its you and not the bad guy NOW?
  And you will never know since you dont know whats in the FICO scoring engine. But having been divorced is in there,
So you can probably guess having your credit locked is going to be in there.
So say hello to shitty credit either way.

Stop dreaming about this having anything to do with helping people. Its about credit bureau liability

Re:Confused... (2, Interesting)

Alpha830RulZ (939527) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677735)

I don't think this is accurate. This should increase the value of a credit score for the purchasers of credit scores, which are companies that lend money. This is a clear marker for a fraudulent loan application, which is one of the two precise things that lenders want to discover as they are processing a loan application (the other being a customer who is real, but nonetheless defaults on the loan). Credit Bureaus get money for returning a score for an account, generally about 10 cents a score. It doesn't cost them more, or reduce their demand to have a segment of customers marking their score as a do not lend value. From the credit grantor's standpoint, this is good info, and prevents them from getting scammed. Since the grantor's goal is to not loan money to people who don't intend to pay, they should want this information. The credit bureau still gets paid, and indeed should be able to charge more for a higher quality score. Everyone benefits.

It's quite possible that I'm being naive. But I do work extensively with these scores and their customers in my job, predictive modeling for financial services companies. I'm the dark side. I make these scores. If I could add this feature to a score, I'd get a bonus.

Re:Confused... (2, Informative)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676125)

stoolpigeon is right, but also it could be used as a preventive measure. Let's say you buy your house and you won't need to open any accounts for several years. You freeze your account so no one can open an account under your name and SSN. The thieves could have all your info but it wouldn't do any good, unless they find a way to unfreeze your account, but they wouldn't know your account was frozen. They'd only know you were denied credit (if it's implemented right). Also, it would be an undesirable expense to pay the $10 for every stolen name, and even that could leave a paper trail.

Re:Confused... (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676183)

right. i'm sure that's part of why they resist. among other reasons stated here. basically, if switching back and forth isn't too onerous, i'd lock mine and leave it locked until i needed something. and then i'd find out which service will be used and just unlock the one(s) i need. then maybe they'd quit bugging me at target about being approved for a credit card. and maybe i'd quit getting all that mail from american express and the others. (though i don't know if they mail those out prior to doing an actual check or not.)

Re:Confused... (3, Informative)

karmatic (776420) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676373)

If you want to stop all the pre-screen credit card offers, opt out [optoutprescreen.com] .

Re:Confused... (1)

sodul (833177) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677471)

I did the paper version a few years ago and never ever received a credit card offer in the mail after that. Best 29 cents I ever spent (or whatever the stamp price was at the time).

Also when I open a bank account I always make sure to tell that I don't want them to share my information with 'anyone'. Be proactive about it so you're sure you are not missing the fine prints about it. An ex Wells Fargo employee once told me that selling/auctioning customer information was their biggest income. She was so discussed about it that she had to quit.

Now my wife keep receiving pre-approved offers while she can't get a credit card on her name because has no SSN (legal alien).
When she applied (out of curiosity) she was deniedfor lack of SSN ... go figure.

Re:Confused... (1)

karmatic (776420) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677767)

Did she try using an ITIN on the application?

Re:Confused... (1)

sodul (833177) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678131)

Yes it did not work.

If we really wanted a credit card on her name we would go with American Express (they did issue cards on her name is the past but that's a different story). My wife will have a work permit in a few months and we'll go get her SSN as soon as we receive it.

It goes deeper than that (5, Interesting)

swb (14022) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676615)

It goes deeper than that. Companies you have credit with will extend you more credit than you think you have (often in the form of higher limits) not just because they like you, but because it can actually lower your credit score by making you more "at risk" for being in debt because you have access to credit.

This helps, say, your credit card issuer because you'll get fewer or less lucrative offers to switch to other cards because you are higher risk, but it also means you might pay a higher interest rate on things you DO want to buy on credit (like a car).

If you can freeze your credit, credit issuers can't silently over-credit you and drive up your cost of credit at the same time.

IMHO, the credit "industry" is a major racket which only appears to be a marketplace; the customers of the credit reporting clearinghouses are the lenders, and the lenders benefit from lower credit ratings and scores by being able to charge higher interest rates. The credit clearinghouses have ZERO incentive to have accurate records, fair correction policies or transparent scoring algorithms; their customer, the lenders, benefit from consumer-unfriendly policies through both higher interest rates and lender-leaning policies that treat borrowers suspiciously.

I don't know, but I've often speculated that the mortgage crisis, which is actually a bad-lending-policy crisis, happened because some renegade lenders figured out several years ago that the clearinghouses were manipulating data against consumers grossly enough that a market was being denied credit generally unfairly. Of course this blossomed into a get-rich-quick real estate bubble, but the technical origins were in our "traditional" credit markets being lender-skewed by the reporting agencies and non-traditional lenders exploiting this gap.

I'd like to see MUCH greater regulation of the reporting agencies, including mandating transparency of records (eg, I get access to everything you share/sell about me in whatever format you package it in), record freezing, banning scoring (force lenders to make decisions based on actual borrowing and payment histories) or at least making the scoring process totally transparent and subject to regulation (ie, queries alone can't lower your score, scoring only based on borrwing and payment histories), requiring a simpler challenge process with the burden of proof greatly shifted to lenders (eg, electronic-only records not in consumers favor MUST be removed if challenges, lenders must provide non-electronic proof of discrepencies, etc).

I'd also like to see credit reporting ONLY available to lenders, not to employers or landlords or anyone else not extending credit trying to judge personality or whatever they use it for.

Its just amazing how little control we have over our credit dossiers and how much influence it has over many details of life. You can get caught raping a 10 year old and win a million dollar settlement if the cop who arrests you even THINKS about smacking you, yet even if you're the best credit consumer in the world you can get dicked over by the credit reporting agencies with only the weakest of "rights" available to you.

Re:It goes deeper than that (4, Informative)

GizmoToy (450886) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676801)

Credit freezes would have no effect on pre-existing credit. This would not stop anyone from raising your credit card limits as access to your credit report is not required to do so. They can, and usually will, provide limits increases based solely upon your previous spending habits and payment history.

I frequently read through CreditBoards, and while having a lot of available credit could conceivably hurt you, actually being denied for having too much credit is pretty rare and seems to only apply to mortgages. In this case, the loan officer will instruct you to close some tradelines before they will proceed. This practice hardly seem predatory, especially given the multitude of other huge problems with the CRA system.

Re:It goes deeper than that (3, Interesting)

Libertarian001 (453712) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677757)

You've made some interesting points, and generally speaking I'd agree with you about new legislations, system transparency, et al. Then it dawns on me: Why exactly does this for profit corporation think that they have any right to 1) track my financial transactions*, 2) sell that information to anyone and everyone, 3) make no effort at accuracy and actively fight against the people they're tracking and 4) charge me to view the records they're keeping on me without my permission?

*A few transactions are actually a matter of public record, like real estate. Note, however, that how something is financed is a private affair and is generally not publicly available (unless it's something like a city building a ball park).

As to what the lack of information on my credit worthiness would do to the credit-lending industry... I would submit that that industry is the cause of a rather large problem in the U.S., much the way a crack dealer regularly supplying a drug addict is a problem.

On a side note, this industry is entirely jacked up. Sure, rich people "deserve" to have nice low rates on their loans. That said, artificially increasing the rate on people with a lower score makes it that much more likely that someone who already has a hard time re-paying the loan will default. Obviously if you can't afford it then you shouldn't be buying it. I refer you to the crack analogy above.

Re:It goes deeper than that (0)

Alpha830RulZ (939527) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677851)

I'd also like to see credit reporting ONLY available to lenders, not to employers or landlords or anyone else not extending credit trying to judge personality or whatever they use it for. Generally, noone can pull a credit report if you haven't given permission. You also need some reasonable private info (SSN) to get the report. Your employer or landlord cannot get a report on you unless you give them data, and permission. Read the forms that you are signing.

You don't have control over a lot of your credit history because you have elected to do business with other companies using credit. The data is as much theirs as it is yours. You can manage this easily by using cash or a check. Not a debit card.

Not to put too fine a point on it, the credit bureaus are only a problem if you choose to borrow money. It is not required that you borrow money.

Re:It goes deeper than that (2, Informative)

peterofoz (1038508) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677915)

Just before we refinanced our home mortgage I had to pay of and cancel several credit cards and ask the remaining ones to lower our credit limit from $50,000 to about $5,000. The credit card companies were 'consuming' our ratings which reduced our ability to get a much lower cost mortgage. Now I just carry 2 cards: 1 for work and 1 for home.

Re:It goes deeper than that (3, Informative)

saikou (211301) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677917)

I'd say that's the right observation for completely wrong reasons. Your credit score depends on the amount of the credit line you use. So if you have a card that's being used up to 90% and then your creditor increases your credit line so you only use 60% of your card the score improves (that's also why it's recomended to have several cards and spread your charges around instead of using one to the max).
You may have problem only if your total amount of credit starts to exceed your possible income. But in that case you don't really need another credit card anyways (though it may have implications for getting a different type of credit such as mortgage etc)
But yes, credit companies love to extend the credit to "not credit worthy" because there is a better chance of getting fees/interest payments/etc.

Of course it's more fun to think that all of the free credit increases you get are just companies trying to "get you". But it's sorta like believing that cities that provide water service do it so they can put "evil drugs" in the water. And electric companies transmit through the power lines hidden mind control signals.

If credit card is really interested in screwing you, they wouldn't increase your credit line. Instead they'd report to credit agencies that you were late with your payment 3 times by more than 30 days, which'll put your rating in the toilet so much faster.

So what they really mean (3, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676083)

Is that it costs them less than $10 to freeze or unfreeze your credit.

What I'm curious about is the certified mail [usps.com]
It doesn't prove anything about the sender, merely that it got received.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676123)

Maybe they are looking to avoid people sending it regular postage and then constantly calling to ask if it arrived, or going nutto when it never does arrive. This way, they force people to do what they ought to anyway, and keep the process cleaner for everyone involved. I'd also think that they want to do all they can to keep it from being trivial, yet without making it too difficult.

Re:So what they really mean (4, Interesting)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676141)

The amusing bit is that you need certified mail to place the freeze, but don't need certified mail to remove it. Interesting given that identity thieves would be interested in removing freezes, not adding them.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676189)

Is that it costs them less than $10 to freeze or unfreeze your credit.
I think $10 is quite reasonable. It would prevent ridiculously frequent freeze on and freeze offs.... like every other day, and it makes guessing your secret pin by submitting an unfreeze request every time very costly.

Compared to other services, such as ATM fees, cash withdrawal fees, transfer fees, application fees, discontinuation fees, etc, it's affordable IMO.

Re:So what they really mean (5, Insightful)

llamalad (12917) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676229)

I think that $10 is entirely unacceptable.

They've been making money by keeping information about me, and now they want ME to pay them to STOP?

Ridiculous.

Re:So what they really mean (2, Insightful)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676347)

Well, I look at it this way. Credit bureaus do provide a desired service for lenders and borrowers. Without a credit history, you would get the same ho-hum homogenized rate everyone else gets. When you have good credit, the credit bureaus are a service to you so they deserve to be paid that. When you open an account, you're initiating that service via the lender.

But, I completely agree with you with the passive credit pulls. We don't request those, but we do have regulation to block those with the 1-888-5-OPT-OUT service.

The problem is credit bureaus don't have enough regulation for requests we don't invoke. They only care about the lenders, not us, so that causes them to be extremely sloppy with handling our data, keeping error rates low, and providing us better service when fixing errors and controlling who accesses our history. The sloppiness of credit bureaus is the #1 cause of identify theft, so they are truly to blame. Federal regulation and punitive fines could put an end to it, but that's due to politicians simply ignoring our demands in preference for the lobbyists (and free gifts).

I simply don't have issues with credit files in of themselves. Just the management of them.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

nosfucious (157958) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678295)

Wouldn't an incorrect, bad credit report constitute libel? If it reduces your standing in the community and the information is not true, would one then have an opportunity to sue the credit reporting agency.

In the event that they claim bad information, then you should be able to sue the party providing the bad information?

Any lawyers, or lawyer-alikes care to comment?

Re:So what they really mean (1)

richardellisjr (584919) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676361)

It's easy to get them to stop, don't use any credit. However credit is a necessity for most, and someone loaning you the 200k for your new house wants to be sure you'll pay your bills. Don't like it, save up and pay for everything in cash, including that 200k house. Otherwise your playing their game, and have to play by their rules.

Re:So what they really mean (2, Interesting)

SuperMog2002 (702837) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676535)

These guys [churchhillmortgage.com] offer a service known as manual underwriting. Instead of using your credit score, they actually look at your income, assets, and expenses to determine your ability to repay. If you make decent money yet have a low credit score simply by not having any debt, they'll still offer you a loan.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

prakslash (681585) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678045)

Meh. Have you actually ever taken a big loan like a house mortgage? Most loan companies go through an underwriting process where they look at your income/debt ratios, assets etc. Credit score is just one part of the equation and most companies treat it as such. Heck, the whole sub-prime loan business is for people with no credit/bad-credit and is all done through manual underwriting. I bet even these guys you talk about pull credit history and scores to start the process. Now, if they say they won't ever pull credit history, then you can talk about them. I don't think that is the case.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

FLEB (312391) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676571)

If you were to take this tactic, though, you'd still want to freeze your credit-- your not having existing accounts doesn't mean someone else can't apply under your name.

Re:So what they really mean (2, Funny)

Antony.Muss (1152597) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676431)

You could steal your own identity and save the $10.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676579)

It gets better. Credit reporting agencies have been exempted from the laws against defamation.

If I say, "You're going to lend money to llamalad? Hm, he's not a good risk. He's behind on his payments to a grass-laying company" and that's not true, you can sue me and collect damages.

If Experian does that through a credit report, you can maybe get it corrected ... eventually ... but never hope to collect damages.

Re:So what they really mean (1)

drawfour (791912) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677957)

Oh no, you're not paying them to stop collecting data on you. You are paying them to prevent allowing a new credit line to be opened. Any current lenders you have will still be able to report on how you pay your loans to them. If you get assigned to a collection agency, that will still be reported.

It's just to prevent identify thiefs from opening a new account in your name.

I agree that a fee for this is absurd, but they will still collect all information on you that they are currently collecting.

Re:So what they really mean (2, Insightful)

Copid (137416) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676225)

What I'm curious about is the certified mail
It doesn't prove anything about the sender, merely that it got received.
One possible reason is to prevent people from claiming that they froze their records after something goes wrong and then trying to blame TransUnion. TransUnion can simply say, "If you sent it, you must have done it via certified mail, so you have the records to prove that it was our mistake, right? No? Then go away." Of course, one would think that a canceled check or record of a credit card payment would be enough to prove that the transaction took place.

The Problem with credit freezes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676117)

If someone were to steal my identity, I would have no means of preventing them from creating credit in my name. This is because I don't have any credit yet. I don't plan on getting credit until I purchase a house. Without credit, a credit freeze is impossible, and this leaves me more vulnerable to identity theft.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676149)

Well, just keep checking for a credit report. And the minute one popped up prior to you wanting one to exist, then freezing it would be a great start. If all the big reporting companies get on board, it would probably be worth your time to do something to get a report with each and then freeze it immediately. You'd be completely safe.
 
If it gets that way - and it isn't too hard to switch back and forth - I may freeze mine, as I don't need any new credit now, and just unlock it when I need to.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

SScorpio (595836) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676181)

This is a terrible idea unless you are going to purchase your house in full. It is extremely hard to obtain a mortgage with a good rate when you don't have credit. One of my co-workers had this happen to him about a year and a half ago. He needed to use his WOW account as a way to show a consistent monthly payment along with his cell phone bill and some past history with apartments.

It's easy to build good credit if you start early. Just get a credit card with a low limit of say $500. Use it once in a while and pay it off in full every month. You'll have to call your credit card company every so often and fight a little to keep your limit low. But having a good credit score will pay off in the long run.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (5, Informative)

puck01 (207782) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676341)

Your absolutely right about the importance of having a credit history. A short credit history can kill a credit score even without any delinquencies or other negative factors.

I do take issue with the benefit of keeping the credit limit low. A potential lender may see larger limits and take that as a sign that other lenders feel comfortable extending credit to you. This is reflected in how the score is calculated. I use Experian's site regularly because I have free access due to my previous job (employer exposed employee data so they bought us all full access). There is a section where you can modify a number of the factors that affect your credit score and see what your score would be with the modified factors. Raising your limits on your credit cards accounts can improve your score. What will harm your score is having a low total percentage of credit available. For example if you have a balance of $400 on credit cards with a total limit of $500 between your credit cards, you will only have 20% of your credit available. This will negatively affect your credit score. If you have a $10,000 total limit with the same $400 balance, your percent of available credit is close to 100% and your score with be much higher.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (0)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678003)

I do take issue with the benefit of keeping the credit limit low. A potential lender may see larger limits and take that as a sign that other lenders feel comfortable extending credit to you.

A potential lender might also see larger limits and think "Geez, this guy could borrow enough money with the snap of a finger to put himself in debt forever ..."

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676363)

Having good credit can also help lower rates for stuff like car payments (I assume, though I don't have 1st hand knowledge) and insurance (which I do have semi-1st hand knowledge of).

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676393)

There is far more then just having a credit card with a low limit. Your credit score or FICO score is also based on having available credit, using that credit, and paying on that credit over time. Another factor is the limit compared to what your balance is. Showing a huge credit limit and your ability to maintain the balance low is a good thing for a house purchase. It shows disipline. If you ever looked at your credit report [*], you will see a line on most revolving credit lines that shows the max balance the account had for a certain time period.

Everyone in the US can get a free credit report from the big three with no strings yearly. See the info at the FTC site here [ftc.gov] for more info (or search Google for free credit report and follow the link to the FTC site if you do not trust my link)
Pay particular attention to the section called "A Warning About "Imposter" Websites" as there are many sites that try to mimick this FTC program but will charge you or give a hard sell for credit services in the process of providing your "free" credit report.

You can get a good idea of what info goes into making your FICO score and general tips for making it better from here [privacyrights.org] . Many banking and money sites offer similar advice.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676505)

Well, I think the order of events would go like this:
  1. Open several starter accounts. You won't have much credit so you'll be at much lower risk level than someone with a great credit history.
  2. You build a credit history over a couple years.
  3. You buy your house.
  4. You freeze your credit file.
After the freeze, existing accounts would still post monthly reports so you're still going to have a continuous credit history even with a frozen file, if it's done that way. I admit there would still be a window of time where you're vulnerable, but having the freeze is better than what we've had before.

By the way, I had always thought the freeze ability was already there because I've heard of this as far back as 10 years ago. It was supposedly possible to get the freeze done at all 3 credit bureaus, but it was difficult and typically used for notable people, such as movie stars and politicians. And, I'm not referring to opting out of pre-screen offers; I explicitly mean a credit file freeze. But, I heard that from 2 money guys on the radio, so not totally sure if they knew what they were talking about.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

FLEB (312391) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676619)

Granted, this is just something I recall my mortgage broker saying a year ago (so take with salt as necessary), but I've heard that a critical component of assessing your credit is available credit versus utilized/outstanding debt. Having a higher credit limit (with low utilization) is a good thing-- I think it's thinking along the lines of "if you come into hard times, you can use your available credit to soak up other bills, and still pay us." (Of course, upping your limits just before looking to mortgage does trip fishiness filters.)

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (4, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676277)

I don't plan on getting credit until I purchase a house.

Why should a lender trust you to repay the $60K loan - the $100K loan - when you have no history of managing debt on a much smaller scale?

The mortgage market is getting very tight for borrowers who can't demonstrate that they have both the experience and the resources to meet their commitments.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676379)

Why should a lender trust you
Oh dear God save us the bleeding heart for the money lenders crap.

Why should the lender trust me? That's not even relevant to anything in the lenders world. There is no such thing as trust in the world of lending money. It's a completely fabricated concept to prey on silly consumers, such as yourself, who place any confidence in the concept of trust.

The lender doesn't trust me. It doesn't matter if my credit rating is 0 or 800 or 1600. The only thing which counts is--will they profit? And the answer is a resounding,"YES!" Of course they'll profit. Even you default on your loan they will still profit. In fact, in many cases, if you default on your loan, the bank will profit even more than if you had happily made all of your payments on time... AND THEY LIKE IT THAT WAY.

The only thing a credit rating is used for is social profiling to see if you'll fit in, socially, with the neighborhood where you'd like to buy a home.

Grow up. Get a clue. All this talk about trust, as its related to a credit report, is diversionary phooey.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676577)

Dude, I seriously hope this was a joke:

The only thing a credit rating is used for is social profiling to see if you'll fit in, socially, with the neighborhood where you'd like to buy a home


because that's just paranoid nonsense. The credit score is used to determine the probability that you'll be able to repay a loan (along with the loan value, terms, down payment, etc.). Sure, if you put down 50% of the house's value in cash, then the bank isn't taking on any risk, so it will write the loan. However, for people who are not in that position, the credit score is an important factor in determining whether you get a loan and what the terms are. There's no doubt that the score is primarily a profit-maximizing tool for the lender (and the credit bureaus), but it has nothing to do with social profiling.


Lenders do not profit on every loan (by the way, 2004 called, they want their loan-writing assumptions back). Houses can decline in value, so if the customer is highly leveraged, the lender will likely lose money in the event of a default. By "lender", I mean the organization that currently holds the loan, not the original writer of the loan.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

puck01 (207782) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676599)

Wow.

The reality is there are people in this world that have money to invest. Some do it by lending money to others that need money for things....houses, cars, buying dinner, whatever. All investing has a certain amount of risk, including lending. Anyone who invests or lends wants to assess and minimize risk. Some might equate low risk with trust. The reality is that even the most trustworthy people have emergencies or personal disasters that result in the inability to pay off debts. Defaulting on loans is nightmare for lenders usually. Don't believe me? Check out some of the many forums where lenders hang out. It doesn't take many bad choices to result in lost money.

In any case, if anyone needs to get a clue, its you.

Personally, I have more debt than most due to years of schooling in addition to the normal stuff. As much as I hate it, I'm thankful I was able to borrow that money to pay for my education for >8 years and still survive. I do consider most of it more of an investment anyway. Now that I have a real job I also invest and lend. There is such a thing as mutually beneficial situations and hopefully a borrower is doing so to benefit themselves and/or their family.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

Frogbert (589961) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676763)

Perhaps because up until this point he has managed to live within his means and not need short term loans to survive. In addition he has manged to save up enough money for a deposit for a house, despite having less money available to him.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678249)

In addition he has manged to save up enough money for a deposit for a house, despite having less money available to him.

Long term, he'll have had more money available to him, as he hasn't been paying interest on his expenditure.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676975)

60K? 100K?

I envy you fucks living in the fly-over land boondocks. No, nevermind that - I'll be moving in there soon. Either that, or I take my money to a cheap, tropical country (more likely).

(fuck, the capcha is "penitent" - FUCK YOU!!)

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

Alpha830RulZ (939527) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677887)

Well, what will go into the model will be things like: income, length of employment, other open trade lines(loans/credit cards). If you have several years of employment, decent income with no debt, you won't have any problem. But it wouldn't hurt to have had a credit card that you paid off to zero every month.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678265)

But it wouldn't hurt to have had a credit card that you paid off to zero every month.

I have one of those, Experian has no knowledge of it, so it doesn't help one bit. Some banks only share details of defaults with credit agencies, at least in the UK.

Re:The Problem with credit freezes (2, Insightful)

dargaud (518470) | more than 7 years ago | (#20678581)

The way the US loan system works has always seemed absurd to me: it's easier to get a loan if you have always been in debt than if you have always have a clean debt-free life. Doesn't make any sense.

Pulling Credit Reports (5, Interesting)

JRHelgeson (576325) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676159)

In the past, prior to applying for a home loan, I had subscribed to credit reporting services at each of the 3 credit reporting agencies. I have had my user accounts set up for over 5 years with each of them. I quit paying for the services once the free AnnualCreditReport.com went up. Now I have been checking my credit annually. Apparently I wasn't the only one who quit paying for services they should be getting for free because they started scamming the consumers.

This year, I went to go pull my report from all 3 bureaus and none of them will let me see it - apparently because they "cannot adequately verify my identity", even though I've logged in with my same account information I've had with them for years. I enter my info; they'll ask me 3 questions about my credit past, which I correctly answer... then tell me I need to send my request via snail-mail.

HOWEVER

If I login and agree to pay $10, then they'll grant me access to the information, no questions asked.

This is a scam!

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (2, Insightful)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676227)

If I login and agree to pay $10, then they'll grant me access to the information, no questions asked.
I have to presume they would check the name and account number on your credit card and see if it matches any accounts in your report, which would offer 1 more hurdle of security by requiring you to have physical possession of the card (they always ask for CVV2 code).

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676301)

I have to presume they would check the name and account number on your credit card and see if it matches any accounts in your report, which would offer 1 more hurdle of security by requiring you to have physical possession of the card (they always ask for CVV2 code).


They can do this for far less than $10.

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (1)

Lord_Breetai (66113) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676357)

I have to presume they would check the name and account number on your credit card and see if it matches any accounts in your report, which would offer 1 more hurdle of security by requiring you to have physical possession of the card (they always ask for CVV2 code).
While this makes sense, can't they go through all the motions of a credit card transaction without actually charging any money. It would have the same result and it wouldn't have to cost $10.

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (1)

JRHelgeson (576325) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676485)

They already have my CC information on file... I just click SUBMIT and it charges the card.
They can SEE the money they're turning away, and they block the transaction.

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (1)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676529)

They have it on file, but they don't know that you have the physical card in your hand. Did they ask for a CVV code? If not, then you're right. It was pointless. If yes, then it's 1 extra level of security.

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (1)

langelgjm (860756) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676649)

There's no reason they couldn't do that for free. Plenty of places will run temp authorization of about $1 on your card, just to make sure that it's valid.

Re:Pulling Credit Reports (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676991)

Same thing happened to me (with Experian only -- the others worked) -- and this was when I was getting my free one for a case of identity theft!!!!

Already available for free? (1)

DaveAtFraud (460127) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676255)

All three credit agencies allow consumers to request that no new credit be granted. This includes both "instant credit" and new credit card offers. It's a really good idea unless you enjoy kiting your debt between different credit cards.

If you want to change banks, you can always shop for a better rate on-line and then request an account application from the bank you decide best fits your needs. This will probably be a better rate than the unsolicted card offers you get in the mail.

Cheers,
Dave

Re:Already available for free? (1)

Geste (527302) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676591)

"If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it's free." -- P.J. O'Rourke

You should ask P.J.O'Rourke about infant mortality and longevity stats in places like Sweden and France and what percent of their GDP is expended on health care.

Re:Already available for free? (1, Interesting)

DaveAtFraud (460127) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677089)

I'm quite happy with what P.J. O'Rourke [wikipedia.org] has to say. Different peoples have differing expectations as to what the government should and should not do. The French, Sweeds, etc. have an expectation of the government taking care of them (see also socialism). A goodly number of people in the U.S. see such cradle to grave care by the government as a tax on those willing to take risks and/or take care of themselves. Neither is right or wrong; just different approaches to the problem that suits the temperament of different people. You should also note that the new French president is attempting to dismantle some of the social support structure since they don't seem to be able to afford it.

You might also look a little more closely at countries with socialized medecine like Canada and the U.K. Those with money leave to get the care they need in a timely manner. Those who can't afford to leave sometimes die waiting for facilities and tests that are considered routine in this country. Yeah, they may have a lower infant mortality rate but don't get sick with something that requires specialized treatment (unless you can afford to pick up the tab yourself possibly after some travel).

Cheers,
Dave

Experian won't answer its phone. (4, Interesting)

arbitraryaardvark (845916) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676309)

In theory you can get a free credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com, as required by federal law. Not to be confused with freecreditreport.com, which is free for $12.95 a month forever, a scam run by experian. My credit had been hit by an identify thief,and I've been trying to get some false info taken off my experian report. The online site didn't work. Calling the toll free number got me an automated thingy and no way to reach a live operator to explain what I actually needed, so today after a couple of weeks I got the form letter refusing to give me the report I'm entitled to under federal law, so I started calling, to try to reach a live human being.
No live response at the 1-877 number, just loops of answering machines that hung up after awhile.
So I called corporate at 714.830.7000, at 5:29 pm eastern. Operator hung up on me. Called back, same operator, wouldn't tell me her name, wouldn't put me through to a supervisor, kept sending me to an answering machine that after awhile of canned ads hung up on me. Went through this 4 times.

I've been meaning to email tony.hadley@experian.com> vp govt relations
Matthew Besler Public Relations Manager ("flack", not a real manager) Tel: +1 224 698 4415 Email: matthew.besler@experian.com, about this, to ask them why they don't answer their phones,
but I'm lazy and didn't get around to it.
So, experian, are you going to answer your phone next time I call?

Re:Experian won't answer its phone. (2, Informative)

sconeu (64226) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677001)

[AOL] Me Too [/AOL]

I had a case of ID theft, filed a police report and everything. Experian kept telling me I wasn't me.
Equifax and TransUnion had no problems.

Experian are a bunch of asshats.

Re:Experian won't answer its phone. (5, Informative)

ageoffri (723674) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677101)

DO NOT USE THE PHONE OR EMAIL This can't be stated enough. Check out http://www.creditboards.com/ [creditboards.com] for more then enough information to successfully fight the 3 major Credit Reporting Agencies. About 2.5 years ago I had one stupid credit card company decide that since my sister and I have the same first letter in our first names that we were the same person and they closed my account also and listed it as a charge off due to bankruptcy which my sister did file. After I figured out what they did the company was very quick to correct the mistake. I then sent letters to the 3 CRA's and two of them followed the law and removed the bankruptcy and updated my account. After repeated attempts with the third I sent a letter labeled Intent to Sue and listed the legal statues that I was prepared to sue under. Almost immediately they corrected the information.

Send everything in writing and send it certified mail return receipt, yes it is a pain but when the time comes to the the CRA to small claims court you have everything you need.

new income stream (2, Insightful)

mmeister (862972) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676359)

these guys are just looking for a new income stream.

Are they taking responsibility for the fact they give you sensitive information which might compromise your identity? No. Instead, they say for $10 per transaction (freeze/unfreeze), you can do it.

Welcome to the new corrupt America where we are all treated like some kind of cash machine, be it from corporations or gov't agencies.

That's nice... (2, Funny)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676369)

How about giving back my identity and life, and maybe throwing in a free iPhone for kicks? Signed, Joe Blow Consumer

Re:That's nice... (2, Funny)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677515)

How about giving back my identity and life, and maybe throwing in a free iPhone for kicks? Signed, Joe Blow Consumer
Dear Joe,
After checking your credit score, we talked with the credit bureaus & discovered you won't be able to afford >$1,000 a year in cellular service anyways.

Sorry, no iPhone for you.
Signed,
AT&T

Tell TransUnion what you think of their new plan (1)

mmeister (862972) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676413)

Be sure to tell Mr. Katz how much you enjoy getting bent over by TransUnion.

CONTACT: Steve Katz of TransUnion, +1-312-985-2373,
skatz@transunion.com

Re:Tell TransUnion what you think of their new pla (1)

Lord_Breetai (66113) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676737)

Be sure to tell Mr. Katz how much you enjoy getting bent over by TransUnion.

CONTACT: Steve Katz of TransUnion, +1-312-985-2373,
skatz@transunion.com
Katz, eh? He'll just say "All your credit are belong to us."

Re:Tell TransUnion what you think of their new pla (1)

mmeister (862972) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676859)

I think if he got 10,000 emails saying basically "thanks for the new scam" and it might just raise a few eyebrows at TransUnion.

Re:Tell TransUnion what you think of their new pla (2, Insightful)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677507)

100,000 emails with "Eh..." in them would do more.

What's to stop a thief from lifting it? (2, Insightful)

zymurgy_cat (627260) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676427)

From the article:

To place a freeze with TransUnion, consumers will need to submit a request via certified mail, but they will be able to lift it via regular mail or by telephone.

Uh, isn't this backwards? It takes certified mail to issue the stop, but only a phone call to lift it? That's like saying it takes a key, password, and retina scan to shut down your computer but nothing else to turn it on. What's to stop a determined identity thief from lifting the freeze with a phone call?

Re:What's to stop a thief from lifting it? (1)

FLEB (312391) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676699)

Here's what I'm assuming--

Since you're initiating the process from scratch, the reason they need a mailing to initiate the freeze is firstly: the cover-your-ass surety of certified mail, and secondly: you're doing all the "initiation" bits there-- passing them the initial "key" information you'll use to unlock your account later, and giving them the information you need to associate your request with your account. When you're unlocking, however, all you're doing is reciting the "key"-- they have all the other relevant info-- and effecting a status change. Basically, there's a lot more raw information getting passed around to freeze the account, versus unfreezing.

Also, people may legitimately need to unfreeze their accounts in a relative hurry.

Re:What's to stop a thief from lifting it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20678129)

One would also hope that any attempt to unfreeze would result in contacting the person who froze the report via information sent when it was frozen. This would eliminate the need for the unfreeze request to be all that secure of a process since there would be a second step that could not be faked by an identity thief.

Re:What's to stop a thief from lifting it? (1)

athdemo (1153305) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676757)

That does seem odd. I filed for a temporary credit alert through Equifax, and it worked the opposite way, as you said. I was able to file it relatively easily, just providing some basic information, but to take it down I had to mail them my SSN and two other forms of verification (copy of my driver's license and a credit card statement for me). Interestingly, the thing is not actually off my credit report even after they mailed me in response saying that it was. I applied for a student loan and got a call saying they couldn't process it automatically because of it being on my credit report. Don't know what the deal is, and I really despise the struggle inherent in finding out what it is.

Possible problematic detail... (4, Funny)

Chris Snook (872473) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676469)

"Acceptable forms of payment are American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa."

So much fuss, so little problem. (4, Insightful)

seebs (15766) | more than 7 years ago | (#20676525)

The whole problem with identity theft and abuse would be so very easy to fix.

1. By law, make it the creditor's problem to prove that charges or credit requests were legitimate.
2. Preemptively invalidate absolutely ALL contract terms, agreements, or otherwise, which shift this burden. Period.

If there were an economic incentive for security, banks would be secure.

Right now, citibank employees will tell you to enter information about your accounts on the web site in "that email" if it has their logo. They don't know what sites are theirs or not. Paypal sends stuff out that comes from "x.com" -- try explaining THAT one to someone who's not aware of their history. Why? Because it's mostly not their problem.

Re:So much fuss, so little problem. (2, Informative)

Duncan3 (10537) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677625)

1. By law, make it the creditor's problem to prove that charges or credit requests were legitimate.

Funny thing that. It is.

bureaus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676717)

I think that he meant 'bureaux'

Pedant

Frost pisRt (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20676723)

dying. Everyone accounts for less at this point Java IRC client similarly grisly claim that BSD is a Person. Ask your Declined in market To have regular chronic abuse of FreeBSD went out superior to slow, eulogies to BSD's counterpart, irc.secsup.org or there are world. GNAA members Play parties the and arms and dick user. 'Now that and committtes design approach. As disturbing. If you GNNA and support by the politickers Posts. Therefore

Identity clearinghouse (3, Interesting)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677273)

I've been a proponent for quite some time of an "identity clearinghouse" - an independent government-funded organization to which you could optionally submit your current contact information for the purposes of verifying your identity. Credit offerors (banks, CC companies, etc.) would be required by law to check with the clearinghouse before they could open a line of credit for anybody. The process of signing up for the clearinghouse or of changing one's information would have to be done in person at one's local DMV, where in nearly every state they already have computer photo records of everyone who has a license or ID card.

The clearinghouse would take the lender's verification request, determine whether the purported credit applicant was listed in the database, and if not, they would respond that the person isn't listed. The lender could then open the line of credit. If the applicant is listed, then the clearinghouse attempts to contact the applicant using the contact information on record to verify the request, first by phone, then by mail (the applicant could also request only to be contacted by mail, or could request that all verifications be denied until further notice). If the applicant verifies the credit request, then the lender is notified with a simple "yes" and can then open the line of credit. Otherwise, the lender is notified with "no" and is forbidden from offering credit under that application.

Any lender found to have opened a line of credit for a person who refused to verify a credit request would become fully liable for that line of credit. The reporting agencies would be required to remove the credit line from the person's records. Any legal costs incurred would also become the lender's responsibility.

The system would be funded via a fee charged for every verification request.

This wouldn't solve all identity theft problems. For example, if someone steals your credit card, you're still on the hook (at least as much as your credit card issuer doesn't cover). It wouldn't necessarily cover interception of one's mail. But it would make mass ripoffs of PII useless.

Has anyone considered... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20677297)

that the whole "credit" system is terribly broken? My personal credit has many mistakes. They were made by people who were, and still are, being paid, at their jobs. I will have to take time off of work, evenings, out of my personal life, possibly hire a lawyer, certainly have to spend lots of time and money to build a federal case, and even then they may not change anything. The people who made the mistakes not only are being paid to do so, but will not lose anything nor pay any penalty, even if I get a court of law to order it fixed.

Do we need a credit reporting system? Sure, but how about that you have to be notified, and given a reasonable and good chance to request a hearing, evidence, etc., BEFORE any negative information is recorded.

And how about accountability across the board? How about criminal penalties for people who abuse the power of their offices (including cops who taze Kerry detractors)??

I'm just amazed at how broken the system is, and at how deeply everyone accepts the system and enables it. Please start questioning it!!! Please let our senators and representatives, both state and federal, know how broken the system is, and we'll ALL live better. :)

credit freeze is a joke (0)

talledega500 (994228) | more than 7 years ago | (#20677431)

This is not a benefit consumers should forget it.

Until individuals CAN ACTUALLY REMOVE ERRONEOUS INFO FROM their reports in a timely and fair manner,
freezing your credit may only keep someone from ruining it worse if you are lucky.

But you will never get a loan or any credit as long as your credit is frozen.
So this is maybe barely a little protection. But only because it takes 10 years to get anything done with a credit bureau.

Otherwise you would simply clear up the identity theft in say a matter of hours and go on with your life.
But you cant DO that CAN YOU?

Might that be because there are say a few hundred mainframes in this country that have more RIGHTS than you
as computers than you do as a person? This will look like childs play when the national ID card is released.

So opt out of the credit system, because you have no power as an individual.....NICE!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Identity thieves have more rights by default than you, because they hack a totally insecure system.
And the system pretends its secure.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?