Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Credit report freezing benefits and drawbacks

A credit freeze is a tool available to people here in US where they can block their credit report so that it becomes really hard for the identity thefts to get new credit and open new accounts by your identity. When you have set the status freeze on your account, no one even you cannot open an account by your name. Even the creditors, lenders and employers will not have access to your credit files. There are some benefits as well as freezing down your credit report:

After adding the freeze status to your credit files, your identity will have higher level of protection. In fact credit freeze is a good way to protect you against identity thefts. There are many drawbacks to this security freeze but this advantage may be worth enough to go for it.

  1. Freezing of credit report is a time consuming and expensive process. You have to provide many certificates and pay $10 to each of the credit reporting bureaus.

  2. In case you need credit or open new account, you will have to request the credit reporting bureaus to lift the freeze status on your report and once you have established the credit you will again have to ask them to refreeze your report. All this process will be time consuming and also have to pay more fees.

  3. The security freeze will not stop the pre-screened credit card offers.

  4. Existing creditors still will have access to your credit files and can send you promotional offer about their products and services

  5. Freezing of credit report could also create some inaccuracies in your report when the companies' tries to update account information have problems in accessing your accounts.

  6. Credit freeze cannot stop an individual to buy items from a stolen credit card number. Some critics consider credit freeze just a problem fro the consumers where they will not be able to apply for a credit card, or a loan or refinance a mortgage without lifting the freeze on their credit report and lifting the freeze will take time and money both.

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