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Credit monitoring or credit freeze or fraud alert
Old 03-03-2018, 06:28 AM   #1
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Credit monitoring or credit freeze or fraud alert

I'm new here and would like some guidance on what any of you do.
DW and I are late 50's now, ER sometime next year. We don't need anymore "credit" , and would like to basically shut our credit off to prevent any ID theft.
What should we do? We have zero debt and don't want or need anymore credit.
What do you guys do to protect yourself? Can I just "turn off" my credit?
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Old 03-03-2018, 06:34 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjflyman View Post
I'm new here and would like some guidance on what any of you do.
DW and I are late 50's now, ER sometime next year. We don't need anymore "credit" , and would like to basically shut our credit off to prevent any ID theft.
What should we do? We have zero debt and don't want or need anymore credit.
What do you guys do to protect yourself? Can I just "turn off" my credit?
Just asking. You don't make any use of credit card rewards?
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Old 03-03-2018, 06:35 AM   #3
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I have my credit frozen at all five major agencies. I would recommend you do at least the big three. (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion).

In my state, it costs me $10 to freeze or unfreeze, but I consider it worthwhile.

A few times, I have had to unfreeze at one of the agencies for a couple of days in order to accomplish something like a new credit card, but it's easy to do (just be sure to keep a good record of your unfreeze PIN).

Worthwhile for peace of mind, IMHO.
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Old 03-03-2018, 06:36 AM   #4
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Just asking. You don't make any use of credit card rewards?
That has nothing to do with credit freezing.
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Old 03-03-2018, 06:42 AM   #5
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Just asking. You don't make any use of credit card rewards?
We have an active credit card or 2 that gives cash back, we would continue to use those for convince, but don't need any "new" credit
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Old 03-03-2018, 06:45 AM   #6
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fraud alert - if you are unsophisticated and don't know about the other options or cash tight and you can't afford the other options.

credit monitoring - if you value information on who is pulling your credit reports

credit freeze - if you want a solution that will allow you to not worry when you see events in the media, or your receive letters from organizations that they have leaked your personal info. More of a hassle and cost to setup, but definitely worth it to many. Helps me to sleep well at night. May not cover all fraud scenarios, but allows me to concentrate on the fewer big ones.

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Old 03-03-2018, 06:48 AM   #7
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I froze my credit with the three major reporting agencies. It is easy to unfreeze if you need credit . Just keep your passwords and login information handy. Last time I unfroze mine temporarily in Ga. it cost $3.
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Old 03-03-2018, 07:05 AM   #8
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That has nothing to do with credit freezing.
Wasn't sure if the question was only for new credit vs. existing credit.
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Old 03-04-2018, 12:00 AM   #9
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That has nothing to do with credit freezing.
perhaps Dtail was asking about signup bonuses for new credit cards which require credit info as opposed to rewards on established credit card spending.
I froze credit after the last Equifax hack and am now reluctant to pay for unfreezing since there is no guarantee I will be approved for new cards but a guaranteed fee to unfreeze.
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Old 03-04-2018, 02:35 AM   #10
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I've had my credit frozen at the big 3 for the last 5 years. No issues with identity
theft during that time. I haven't had any applications for credit in that 5 years
and don't foresee any anytime soon.The only slight drawback I've seen is that
some of the free credit scores do not work for me. I get free scores from Chase,
Amex and BoA because I have active credit cards with them. Mint can't pull for
me. Wells Fargo, where I bank, can't pull on me. Seems like if you don't have
an active credit account in place with them, a business can't access your file at
all. I consider that more or less a positive but it might be a drawback for some.

If you have the financial relationships you anticipate needing for the near future
in place, it seems to me like having a credit freeze is a no-brainer. I intend to
have my credit frozen for the rest of my life, with maybe a brief thaw or two for
applications in the future.
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Old 03-04-2018, 08:31 AM   #11
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Freezing your credit report with the three major agencies is your best bet. Nobody can open any credit under your name. I've had mine frozen for 8 years and DW for 3 and we've only had to unfreeze it twice during that period. The process is straight forward and it only cost $5 in our state.

With all the hacking that's going on it's not a matter of whether our information is out there, it's limiting the harm that someone can do with it. Other than filing a fraudulent tax return (our return was accepted this year so we're fine for another year) the potential for damage to our credit is minimal.
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Old 03-04-2018, 08:39 AM   #12
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I had my identity stolen after the Equifax hack and someone made a claim against my social security. No credit freeze, etc will prevent Social Security fraud. Fortunately I did have my credit frozen at all 5 places. So far no problems with thieves opening credit in my name. So I strongly suggest the credit freeze. Also open a SS account and monitor it.
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Old 03-04-2018, 09:42 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by braumeister View Post
I have my credit frozen at all five major agencies. I would recommend you do at least the big three. (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion).

In my state, it costs me $10 to freeze or unfreeze, but I consider it worthwhile.

A few times, I have had to unfreeze at one of the agencies for a couple of days in order to accomplish something like a new credit card, but it's easy to do (just be sure to keep a good record of your unfreeze PIN).

Worthwhile for peace of mind, IMHO.
+1. I have done the same.
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Old 03-04-2018, 12:56 PM   #14
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I froze my credit after the Equifax hack, but I kept my monitoring. Actually I signed up for a new one via Costco which has a much better deal, but I’m not sure I understand the presentation well. The old one under Equifax (the bad guys) which I plan to drop is fairly clear.
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Old 03-04-2018, 06:21 PM   #15
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I have all mine frozen. So far no problems.
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Old 03-04-2018, 08:52 PM   #16
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We froze our all credit September after the Equifax breach. In December we tried to do temporary unfreeze to have satellite tv installed. Multiple calls to Equifax, they said it was unfroze, the tv company still could not get a credit report. This went on for two weeks. I even asked to the freeze removed permanently. Still a no go. We gave up and bought a roof mount antenna for local stations and subscribed to Netflix for our winter home. I have no idea if it ever got unlocked, will have to deal with it someday........again........
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Old 03-04-2018, 09:17 PM   #17
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There have been multiple references in this thread about all "5" bureaus. What are the others besides Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian?
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Old 03-05-2018, 07:44 AM   #18
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We froze our all credit September after the Equifax breach. In December we tried to do temporary unfreeze to have satellite tv installed. Multiple calls to Equifax, they said it was unfroze, the tv company still could not get a credit report. This went on for two weeks. I even asked to the freeze removed permanently. Still a no go. We gave up and bought a roof mount antenna for local stations and subscribed to Netflix for our winter home. I have no idea if it ever got unlocked, will have to deal with it someday........again........
When we wanted to get cable we did not want to unfreeze our credit. We asked the cable company what to do and they let us put down a deposit instead of unfreezing our credit. Would that be possible with a satellite company?
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Old 03-05-2018, 07:45 AM   #19
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The other two are ChexSystems and Innovis.
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Old 03-05-2018, 12:35 PM   #20
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I had already froze 4 out of the 5. Thanks for the info on ChexSystems and I requested my free report today. When I get their credit report in the snail mail (USPS, how quaint!) I will freeze them also.
I live in Nevada and am over 65 years old so freezes and thaws are free for me.
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