16 CFR Part 610 Amendments to Rule to Prevent Deceptive Marketing of Credit Reports and to Ensure Access to Free Annual File Disclosures
These comments may not pertain directly to the subject above but the issue raised does impact the ability to obtain a yearly free credit report. A year or so ago, Maryland required the credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax and TransUnion to implement a process to allow a person to freeze his/her credit report. The credit freeze process is available in many states. I established the freeze with all three companies. Since I implemented the freeze, I find that Equifax is the only bureau that does not permit ordering of a credit report online via www.annualcreditreport.com. They require a form to be mailed with 2 pieces of identification and documentation of the pin number associated with the freeze. I feel this mail-in process is a problem since it circumvents the exact problem I am trying to prevent, identity theft. I am forced to provide information via the mail that could be stolen and used for identity theft - both valid identification and my security freeze number. In addition to this problem, I wanted to note that the mail-in process, controlled by Annual Credit Report Service, is fraught with additional problems such as mailing incorrect reports and letters. For example, I was initially informed that I did not supply my pin number which was clearly in the documentation. Then, they mailed all three credit reports when I only requested one. I believe the credit bureaus should be required to support online ordering of a credit report, even if a security freeze is placed on the account. The authentication of a user by using the freeze pin, an account pin and multiple security questions that need to be answered correctly is certainly a more secure process than mailing the information. Perhaps this problem has been corrected since my last experience with ordering the yearly report from Equifax. However, if not corrected, I think requirements to allow all people to order the reports online should be pursued. thanks!