I am getting ready to freeze mine as someone, somehow stole my identity and opened a zero balance in Huntington Bank and set up Bill's to pay. Had I not gotten a debit card in the mail this past Saturday I would not have known. When I called the bank..they had closed the account as fraudulent. They also gave me the gmail acct the person used and phone number..someone from Oklahoma. I'm filing a police report today. And Turbo and transunion also state I have a new employer. Knews to me as I've been with my employer for 24 yrs.
How do you unfreeze your credit? I blocked mine because my phone was hacked and all my info is on it. But now trying to buy a home my credit is locked and I can't figure out how to unlock it. 😒
There are two different procedures.
A freeze is governed by federal law. Credit bureaus must offer it, and you can freeze your credit report online without an account with the credit bureau. However, the credit bureau can charge a nominal fee for freezes, or temporary or permanent lifting the freeze, depending on state law.
All three credit bureaus also allow you to "lock" your credit report. You can do this by registering for a free online account with each bureau. They will try to upsell you to a paid membership but you don't have to take it. A lock is generally the same as a freeze, but it is controlled by the bureau's terms and conditions, rather than the law, so the terms might be different. Locks are easier to temporarily unlock.
I have locked or frozen all my credit accounts just to prevent mischief. I've occasionally lost a credit card or had a fraudulent charge, but mostly its a precaution. If your accounts are frozen or locked, you must remember to unlock or unfreeze them before applying for new credit (you can lock them again after).
@Opus 17 , what free method have you found to freely lock at Experian? While Equifax (Lock & Alert app) and TransUnion (myTransUnion app) are free to use, the Experian app requires one of their monthly service plans to be able to access the lock feature. For Experian, I have to use the Experian Freeze website to do a freeze or a lift.