Published on September 28th, 2017 | by William Charles47
Equifax Will Allow Consumers To Lock & Unlock Their Credit Report For Free For Life
Interim Equifax CEO Paulino do Rego Barros Jr has published an op-ed piece of WSJ titled “On Behalf of Equifax, I’m Sorry”. In this piece he states that consumers will have until the end of January to sign up for free credit freeezes (previously it was mid November) in addition Equifax has made a commitment that by January 31st Equifax will offer a new service allowing consumers the option of controlling access to their personal credit data. This will let consumers lock and unlock access to their Equifax credit report. The service will be free for life.
The issue I have with this announcement is that it does little to actually provide protections for consumers. Experian & TransUnion reports will not be free to freeze and unfreeze and criminals with access to breached information would still be able to open unauthorized accounts. Consumers should have had the ability to freeze and unfreeze their credit reports for all three credit bureaus before this incident took place, I think it’s laughable that consumer reporting agencies are allowed to collect and sell consumer credit data and then charge consumers to limit who has access to that data. To make matters worse the data found in an individuals credit report is often inaccurate and difficult to correct.
I appreciate that Mr Rego Barros is doing his best in a bad situation, but for me it’s too little too late. I’d like to see more regulation surrounding credit reporting agencies and data breaches in general as it seems like they are becoming an all too common occurrence. We’ve compiled a list of things you should do in response to this data breach here.