Today was supposed to be the deadline for Equifax’s free credit freeze offering, but the company has decided to extend the service to consumers for another five months. Now,
Still, January 31 is the last day to cash in on free credit monitoring through
Equifax decided to offer these user services after a massive outcry from consumers and
Users who freeze their credit report through Equifax should also look into doing so at Experian and TransUnion, the other two major credit bureaus. Choosing to freeze your credit reports is a useful if imperfect tool for anyone concerned that their accounts or identifying information (social security numbers, birth dates, etc.) might be compromised, but it can prevent would-be identity thieves from opening a line of credit or a loan in your name.
Equifax is also introducing a new credit locking service called Lock & Alert, made available today (and free for life) in app form. It may sound redundant, but a lock and a freeze are two different services. As the company explained to CNN Money, a credit freeze can only be lifted with a pin number, while a credit lock uses “modern authentication techniques, such as username and passwords and one time passcodes for better user experience.” The Lock & Alert app is available now through the
Featured Image: REUTERS/Brendan McDermid