If you’ve had a brush with identity theft recently, then freezing your Social Security number may be the best option you have to protect your finances. Freezing a Social Security number prevents anyone from accessing all three of your credit reports without your express permission.
When creditors aren’t able to access your credit reports, someone else won’t be able to open a new line of credit or get a loan using your Social Security number. People generally freeze a Social Security number in case of identity theft; however, the service is available to anyone.
To freeze your Social Security number, follow the steps below:
Step 1: File a police report — if you are a victim of identity theft, it is best to have a copy of the police report to qualify for a security freeze free of charge.
Step 2: Go online — the fastest way to freeze a Social Security number is to go straight to the websites of all three major credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian.
Step 3: Write a letter — send a written request for a security freeze to all the credit bureaus. Be sure to include your full legal name, Social Security number, date of birth, current address, your address from the last two years as well as the reason you are requesting a freeze on your account.
Step 4: Call the credit bureaus — you can also call the three credit bureaus to request a freeze. Prepare all the necessary information, as they will ask you for the same details described in Step 3.
But instead of putting your Social Security number on a freeze, it is best to make sure that you are always protected. After all, there is a saying that prevention is better than cure. So instead of having to worry about the steps to take in case someone else gets a hold of your Social Security number, why not give yourself the advantage of Identity Protection services. Identity Protection services work night and day to make sure that your personal information and details never fall into the wrong hands. They give you a comprehensive line of defense, so your Social Security number is always intact.