Are you a senior worried about identity theft? Or are you worried about a loved one with dementia becoming a victim of identity theft? Here are some tips on freezing someone’s credit. This is important if you’re trying to protect someone from elder abuse.
What does it mean to freeze credit?
A credit freeze restricts access to your credit report, making it harder for identity thieves to open new accounts in your name.
To place or lift a credit freeze, you must contact each credit bureau separately.
- Equifax: equifax.com or 800-695-1111
- Experian: experian.com or 888-397-3742
- TransUnion: transunion.com or 888-909-8872
Once a credit freeze is in place, it secures your credit file until you lift the freeze. You can do that online, by phone, or by mail using the special PIN the companies give you when you do the credit freeze. Once you place the credit freeze, it secures your credit file until you lift the freeze. You can unfreeze credit temporarily when you want to apply for new credit.
Does it cost anything to freeze credit?
No. Placing or lifting a credit freeze is free. Once a credit freeze is in place, it secures your credit file until you lift the freeze. You can unfreeze credit temporarily when you want to apply for new credit. Also, freezing your credit does not affect your credit score.
Should you freeze your credit?
If you’re not actively shopping for a credit card or loan, freezing your credit is wise. If you think someone compromised your data, consider a credit freeze. It’s especially important if someone stole your Social Security number. Identity theft among seniors is on the rise. So be vigilant about this issue.