Foil Identity Theft; Get Your Free Annual Credit Reports
A valuable update to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) that went into effect December 1, 2004, entitles consumers to a free credit report every year from each of three major credit reporting bureaus that maintain them – Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. This privilege is being rolled out in phases, so the agencies won’t be overwhelmed by requests. Oklahoma residents became eligible for the free reports in June.
The report may be requested online at www.annualcreditreport.com, by phone at 1-877-322-8228, or by mail. You can request your credit report by mail by filling out the request form and mailing it to the address found on the web site.
Checking your credit report once a year is an excellent way to guard your good credit. It will reveal suspicious activity on your accounts, who’s been doing a credit check on you and any errors on the report. Don’t expect to receive your credit score with the free report, however. That information is not included.