News 12 at 6, October 15, 2007
If you're worried about identity theft, there's a new tool to use to protect your personal information. It's called a credit freeze, and one credit bureau is already offering it for you to use.
The credit bureau TransUnion is now offering something called a security freeze. Basically that means you can put a freeze on your credit information so no one can access it.
If you're a worried about identity theft, this is a great way to keep it from happening.
Several states have already started using this system and TransUnion representatives say it has been a success.
Here's how it works, you just contact TransUnion to authorize a freeze and pay $10 to get it started. If you need to temporarily thaw that freeze, to say get a loan on a house or car, you just pay another $10. It's also $10 to stop the freeze altogether.
When your account is in a freeze, no one except a very few authorized parties can access your credit report.
The other 2 credit bureaus are expected to add a freeze option before too long too. And if you are a victim of identity theft, that 10 dollar fee will be waived.