August 30, 2005

Beginning West Coast Blogging Week: Free Credit Reports Available to All on Sept. 1; Ignore “Free Report” Pretenders

Filed under: General,Money Tip of the Day,Scams — Tom @ 11:08 am

BizzyBlog will be on business in California most of the week; hence the late morning post. Hopefully during the rest of the week I’ll be able to get posts ready the previous evening and defer them until the next morning so you, dear readers, can have new info to look at here early each Eastern-Time morning.

The Money Tip of the Day is that the final phase of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) relating to the availability of annual free credit reports kicks in just two days from now on September 1, allowing those in the following states to get free reports once every 12 months: CT, DE, DC, ME, MD, MA, NH, NJ, NY, NC, PA, RI, VT, VA, WV. Some of the states just mentioned (MA for one) already had this availability under previous state laws.

So finally, two days from now, everyone will be able to get their credit report from each of the three bureaus once every 12 months using one of three methods: Internet, phone, or mail.

The contact info is:

Online: www.annualcreditreport.com
Phone: 877-322-8228
Mail: Annual Credit Report Request Service
P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281

Credit reports are free. Credit scores are not.

This previous post suggested, thanks to online crooks who appear to have gained the ability to compromise Secure Sockey Layer security and successfully pose (site seal and all) as someone else, that getting your free reports by phone is safer that going online.

Since everyone in the country is now eligible for the annual report using the above means, you can officially once and for all ignore all the other noise you hear on the radio and see on TV about how to get “free credit reports.” These ads are really come-ons for free credit-monitoring services. The Federal Trade Commission recently cracked down on deceptiveness of these ads, so if we’re lucky we won’t be hearing or seeing any of them again.

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