16 CFR Part 610 Amendments to Rule to Prevent Deceptive Marketing of Credit Reports and to Ensure Access to Free Annual File Disclosures
Currently, TV and radio ads are ridiculously deceptive. I admit I am entertained by the silly ads featuring the "free credit report.com guy"--especially the one in renaissance gear. But the purpose of these ads is utterly deceptive, and the general public is deceived on a regular basis. (Obviously, or these ads would not keep running.) This twists the purpose of the free credit report law. These ads should be banned completely. Failing that, a tiny print disclaimer or fast-voiced audio disclaimer is not enough to stop the confusion. Someone in the ad would have to say very clearly that this is not the real deal. When I get to the genuine free credit report site, I do not want to be offered paid services. That also is very confusing. And it is extortionate: as a consumer, I fear that the company will not provide the free service mandated by law unless I buy something. Just the way companies used to extort purchases to "increase" one's chances of winning their sweepstakes. For all I know, Publisher's Clearinghouse is still doing it. But it is wrong. A free service should be just that: free. If you want the law to work, you should not allow these commercial interests to muddy the waters.