Q:

How do you freeze credit?

A:

Quick Answer

To begin the process of placing a freeze on your credit report, contact the three major credit reporting companies by phone, and be prepared to provide your name, address, date of birth, and Social Security number. Experts recommend contacting these companies by phone, as initiating a credit freeze online can make your personal information more vulnerable to identity theft.

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How do you freeze credit?
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Full Answer

With the security freeze in place, lenders and other companies offering credit-sensitive services are unable to obtain a copy of your credit report. If you are applying for insurance, a home loan or new credit account, you can contact the reporting company and ask them to lift the freeze for a certain period of time or for a specific lender.

Putting a freeze on your account does not end prescreened credit offers; however, it is possible through another process to opt out of these offers, according to the FTC. Another option, for individuals who believe they are the victim of identity theft, is the fraud alert. The alert continues to allow lending institutions to receive a copy of your credit report but requires the institutions to take steps to confirm your identity. Fraud alerts also stop others from opening new accounts in your name.

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