Equifax Equifax. Experian Experian. Transunion TransUnion. Great news - but for us that put a freeze on after the equifax breach - do we get our money back? The new law does not provide for giving refunds to people who already placed a freeze. But from now on, every time you lift or place a freeze, it will be free with all three credit bureaus. Your credit score can still increase or decrease after you place a credit freeze.

A freeze on your credit file does not freeze your credit score. The freeze on your credit file limits the ability of a business to get access to your credit file.

Your credit file includes information about where you live, how you pay your bills, and whether you have been sued or have filed for bankruptcy. After you place a freeze on your credit file, you keep on paying bills, and doing things that change the information in your credit file and could affect your credit score. WHY do you Only provide sharing via social media? Not Everyone uses Any of your preferred social media. I only would share via email, if that were available. I have NO social media accounts, period. You can send someone a link to this blog in an email.

Copy the URL at the top of this page and send it in an email. The URL for this blog is.

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What is the difference between a lock and a freeze? And can you switch from a lock to a freeze if you already had a lock?

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Both a credit freeze and a credit lock limit access to your credit file so no one, including you, can open new accounts until you unlock your credit file. To be fully protected by a credit freeze or a credit lock, you must place a freeze or lock with all three nationwide credit reporting agencies.

However, with a lock, you do not get a PIN. Usually you do not need to wait to lock or unlock your credit file, although the current Equifax lock can take 24 to 48 hours. You can lock and unlock your credit file from a computer or mobile device through an app, but not with a phone call. A lock lasts only as long as you have an ongoing lock agreement with a credit reporting agency. In some cases, you need to pay a monthly fee to maintain your lock service.

Credit reporting agencies can set and change lock fees at any time. Credit freezes are now governed by federal law. Why can't we just contact one 1 Credit Bureau, and that one contact the others. KISS, for the User! I have credit freezes for long time and I as recall they were always free. The only sticker is they make you pay through the nose to unlock them for a business to check your credit. That is the one sticker that should be free. According to the article and the law, it is now free to freeze and unfreeze your credit. You do not pay anymore. These companies have made it nearly impossible to contact them about credit freeze issues.

Online access is totally without links. Calling generally numbers gets you no link for a freeze. I appreciate that someone is pressing them to address the breach but they make it nearly inaccessible to do. Consumer Reporting Agencies , ex: Auto insurance? Will there be any affect on their access and accuracy of the information they can provide?

The law applies only to nationwide credit reporting agencies. Please contact a business directly to ask if it offers a freeze. I lifted a credit freeze for a few days with all three agencies in August and none charged. That made things a lot easier. I am an old man, don't understand too much these days. Please tell me what is a freeze and why is it necessary? That will open a page of information about credit freezes.

If you freeze your credit file, that makes it harder for a business to get the information it needs to give credit, so it makes it harder for an identity thief to get credit in your name. I thank you! I will keep my fingers crossed and continue my diligence in securing part-time work to subsidize my income. Work has been an important part of getting out of debt someday and perhaps now possible future employers will hire me and not see me as a deadbeat according to the credit bureau scores.

This is a huge correction to a less than legal allowance for anyone to access personal information on my financial status. I have a credit freeze on my credit report for about 10 years. That was the smartest thing I did in a long time. Does the duration of the free Lift vary from state to state, or is the Lift duration standardized by Federal law? For example, when obtaining a car loan a consumer may need to unfreeze their credit files; will a temporary free Lift last long enough for the lender to complete due diligence and approve the loan maybe 5 days?

When you lift a freeze, you have two options. These two options are available to everyone in the country. If you do, it stays lifted until you place it again. If you do, you must tell the credit reporting agency the length of time you want the freeze to be lifted; for example "five days. Remember to contact each of the three national credit reporting agencies separately to lift and re-place a freeze on your credit files. I placed a freeze on the three bureau and paid the fees. Will the freezes continue unless canceled?

A freeze remains in place until you ask a credit reporting agency to lift it temporarily or permanently. Do I have to unfreeze lift my credit freeze if I use my credit card? Can someone point me in the direction to find the answer? I know you have to lift the freeze if you want credit but is using a credit card considered the same thing? So the freeze is only for prevention of new accounts being opened?

Say there is someone reporting false information to Equifax, no good reason except to cause damage and reduced score. Would a freeze prevent the addition of more false reports? If someone reports false information, report that to the credit bureau and ask them to remove it. When a credit freeze is in place, a creditor can still report delinquent debts. I tried, in vain, to reach Equifax over three days. I will try again. So predictable Starting on September 21, , a credit freeze is free.

You don't need to pay for a credit freeze. Use the information in this blog to contact each credit reporting agency to request a free credit freeze. Yes, you can still view your credit report when a freeze is in place. Go to anualcreditreport. Nationwide credit reporting companies sell the information in your report to creditors, insurers, employers, and other businesses that use it to evaluate your applications for credit, insurance, employment or renting a home. A person has an individual credit file. A person usually has three individual credit files, because there are three nationwide credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

If a person wants a complete credit freeze, he or she must contact the three credit reporting agencies and ask each agency to place a freeze. I have had credit freezes at all three credit reporting agencies since and it has worked perfectly, until recently. Last August I tried to lift the credit freezes in order to get approval for a new auto loan. Experian and TransUnion were no problem, however, Equifax was a nightmare to unfreeze. In the end, I had to give up on Equifax and apply for the loan with just Experian and TransUnion unfrozen. Luckily, the loan went through.

Equifax refused to unfreeze my records, unless I wrote to them by snail mail, which defeats the purpose of being able to unfreeze my records quickly. I hope this new law will get Equifax to fix their credit unfreezing process.

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I had the same problem with Experian. I had my pin right in front of me, answered personal questions etc.

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When I finally sent the information they wanted in by mail, I just had them remove it permanently! Way too much trouble! There has to be an easier way! Same here. Experian won't let you unfreeze your credit unless you mail in sensitive documents to their company and then who knows what happens to the documents? I would like to know how these companies were allowed to form and store credit information for people. Who gave them the authority and who besides FTC regulates what they do and from where they operate? Most investigators will offer a free initial consultation.

This will allow you to become familiar with the investigator and confirm the PI has an office. If the investigator only works out of restaurants or over the phone, this is a bad sign. You need to be sure you can easily locate the investigator at any time during the search at an office. Double check that the investigator has insurance.

Most serious PIs are insured up to a few million dollars. While insurance is not necessary for all jobs, if something were to happen during the course of the work, as the employer, you would be held liable if the investigator has no insurance coverage. Ask the investigator about their fees. Expect to pay a higher fee for investigators with extensive expertise and training. Discuss if the investigator has a flat fee for basic searches like a background check, personal research work like a cell phone number search, a criminal record check, or a vehicle registration search, as well as a bug sweep of a home or car and GPS monitoring.

These can vary by expertise and by the amount of information the investigator needs to look for. Talk to the investigator about a deposit or retainer fee. Some private investigators may require a deposit depending on the type of service required and the circumstances of the investigation. Sign a contract with the private investigator.

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The contract should outline the services to be performed, and require complete confidentiality between you and the investigator. Be prepared for any information the private investigator may uncover or not uncover. There are no guarantees the investigator will successfully track the person you are looking for or locate them. But if the investigator does their job properly, they may discover information on the person you are looking for that you should be prepared and ready to receive. Method 4. Make a list of information you have about the person you are tracking.

List the person's names, starting with the full proper name of the person. If the person goes by nicknames, write those down as well. If you know their birth names or married names, note those. Record the person's age or approximate age. Write down the last known address that you have for the person. Add anything you have come across that may indicate that the person is now in another geographic location. For example, a former neighbor may provide information that the person left Massachusetts for a job in California.

Find the last known contact information that you have for the person. This includes their telephone number, email address and any social network contacts. Note the person's last known employer. If the person you are tracking has an ongoing career in a specific field, the person may be on a business or professional networking web site that may list their current contact information. Get in touch with friends or mutual acquaintances of the person you are looking for. These interests may place the person on a special interest website or blog.

Try to identify as many former friends and family members of the person as you can. The person may be traceable through them. Search the person on Internet search engines. These search engines can be used to look for names and addresses. Search engines also can link the person to social networks, blogs, professional networks and special interest networks.

If they have a very common name, it helps to narrow down the search by searching their full name, their current resident state, and any other personal information you may have. Search online for family members, friends and known business associates of the person. Links to those people may enable you to track the person through family, friends or business associates. You can go to an IP tracking lookup website and enter the IP number.

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It will give you results that are accurate to the nearest mid-size city or so usually. This will not track them very accurately though, so you won't get a specific address, and the location won't move with them. IP addresses have fixed locations. Yes No. Not Helpful 2 Helpful Not Helpful 3 Helpful 9. There are some ways to find a large group of people that share the same name but finding the right person within that group needs a lot of time and a lot of money.

If you're prepared to start with a large group and sort through everyone in it, it might be possible but likely very hard. If you have an image, you could ask people via social media if they know the person. Last resort, hire a detective. Not Helpful 0 Helpful 4. Unanswered Questions. How can I track someone's location using their mobile cell phone number? Answer this question Flag as Flag as How do I track someone who doesn't have a phone number? How can I track someone using a cellphone number?

Do I have to have a last name to track someone? How can I track someone using their ID number? Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Already answered Not a question Bad question Other. Tips Do not install a GPS tracker on an individual's property if you wish to track him or her. This is likely illegal. Related wikiHows.