How to Lock Your Credit in 2021 – What it Means and Why You Should Consider It

Fraudulent claims on loans and leases are the fastest-growing kind of identity theft in the United States. Incidents of identity theft for leases and loans more than doubled in the last year.

You need to protect yourself from criminals looking to harm your credit and use their identity for themselves. You can request a credit lock from all three national credit bureaus and block access to any person or agency trying to do a credit check on you.

Also known as a security lock, taking this step will keep you more in control of who can access your personal information. Credit freezes produce similar results, but it is faster and simpler to lock your credit. It also makes it easier to grant access to those whom you want to check your info.

What Is A Credit Lock?

Locking your credit is a preventative measure you can take to prevent any person or agency from accessing your individual information. By taking this step, you actively prevent identity theft and any other fraudulent acts on your credit.

How Do You Lock Your Credit?

When locking your credit, a vital element to know is that locking your credit with one credit bureau will not cause the other two reports to be locked. You will need to request locks for each credit report to prevent all credit checks as you navigate your way through, avoiding identity theft.

How To Unlock Your Credit Each credit bureau will request that you create a user account on their website or app when you join their program. When you are ready to unlock your credit, you will be able to log in and unlock your file with only one click.

When You Should Lock Your Credit You can always air on the side of caution and freeze or lock your credit as a proactive measure. Still, in most cases, you will need to lock or freeze your credit when your personal information or social security number has been exposed due to a data breach.

How A Parent Can Freeze A Minor’s Credit

– Your child’s birth certificate or the legal documentation you have showing you have legal guardianship of the child. – Your government-issued photo identification, such as your drivers’ license – Your birth certificate – Your child’s birth certificate – Documentation showing your name and address, such as your utility bill or bank statement

2. Download the Application Each site has its own process. Follow the directions to get the applications you need. TransUnion has a letter to fill out rather than an application as the other agencies do.

3. Mail the documents, applications/letters, and wait for a response from each bureau. Make sure you keep your records organized so you can reaccess them if you need to. That is a practical option, but remember, this is not the be-all and end-all of identity protection.

If you think or know your personal information got comprised in a breach, the best option is to lock or freeze your credit to maximize your chances of keeping your information safe.

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