Is Getting a Free Credit Report Safe?

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Is Getting a Free Credit Report Safe?

A credit report is an essential and valuable document. It may assist you in obtaining a mortgage, a new automobile, and a school loan. It might have an influence on credit card approvals and even job applications. Obtaining a free credit report might be risk-free provided you are cautious about the website from which you get it.

Credit reports are provided by three main credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. These may be the most secure methods of collecting your credit history, which influences your own credit score.

Key Takeaways

  • The three credit bureaus that offer credit reports are Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
  • Phishing is a kind of cybercrime that might happen when you request a credit check.
  • Avoid clicking on links to bogus websites to protect yourself against cybercrime.

Safely Request Your Credit History

AnnualCreditReport.com is the most popular website where people may get free credit reports. The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) was enacted in 2003, giving every consumer access to a free credit report once a year. For this goal, the three main credit agencies collaborated to produce AnnualCreditReport.com.

The website is encrypted using SSL and is deemed safe. You may get your credit report from each agency once a year, and some people request one every four months to receive free reports on a quarterly basis.

Experian is the only credit bureau that offers your FICO score for free. If you want a credit score from Equifax or TransUnion, you must pay a charge to the companies.

Many large credit card companies, such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo, provide free credit ratings to cardholders. Surprisingly, an increasing number of credit card companies are now providing free credit ratings to anybody, not just cardholders. To check your credit score for free, for example, you don’t need to have a credit card or an account with Chase or Discover.

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Getting Free Reports

Another option is to go straight to the websites of the three credit bureau agencies (Experian.com, TransUnion.com, and Equifax.com). While TransUnion will lead you to annualcreditreport.com, you may get a free credit report straight from the websites of Experian and Equifax.

Every year, each of these agencies is obligated by law to provide customers with a free credit report. If you are the victim of fraud, you may be entitled to free credit reports, and the law provides that you are entitled to free credit reports if a corporation takes action against you. This statute applies to insurance, job, and credit denials, as well as any judgements or credit reports from collection agencies. Consumers must request the free reports within 60 days of the alleged wrongdoing.

Tips to Ensure Security

In the realm of cybercrime, phishing is a developing trend. It is the act of pretending to be something genuine in order to mislead you into disclosing your personal identity information, particularly your Social Security number. Many of these phishing assaults take place through email or websites that seem official at first glance, but are really designed to deceive you. Here are some precautions you can take:

  • Never click or go to a website from an email, since this will often take you to one of these phony sites.
  • Always check the URL of the webpage in the address bar. Do not continue if anything seems suspect, such as a misspelled word.
  • Protect your personal computers, tablets, and mobile phones with passwords.
  • Be cautious while sharing or giving personal information on social media. Never reveal or share your Social Security number or birth date.
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The Bottom Line

Free credit reports are an excellent resource for people looking to monitor and improve their credit scores. However, with cybercrime such as phishing on the increase, it is critical to be aware of the possible hazards and only visit trustworthy websites.

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