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How do you freeze your credit (and when you need it)

If you're like most Americans, you probably rely on the internet to do everything from buying birthday presents to booking holidays to managing your bank account and paying bills.

But for every transaction you make, you trust a company with some kind of personal information. And even if you do not purchase online yourself, most business systems are still connected to the internet. All this means that your personal data is likely to be stored in dozens or perhaps hundreds of online databases.

Read more: How to add identity theft recovery to your policy

Computer security is a hot topic today and just so. With so many high performance data breaches in the news, we all know that it is possible for personal data to come into hiding hands.

If you are looking for an extra protection law, you may want to consider freezing your credit.

What does it mean to freeze your credit?

A credit phrase prevents potential lenders from accessing your credit information. This means that even if a thief has your personal information, they will not be able to open a new fraudulent account (such as a loan, credit card, or bank account) in your name.

Is that a credit phrase right for you? Here are some points to consider:

  • It is a reliable and safe step. If you know that you have been affected by a data breach, a credit freeze is a reliable way to prevent new accounts from being opened in your name. It takes a little work, but it gives you an extra layer of protection.
  • It does not prevent all risks of financial loss. A credit freeze will prevent the opening of new accounts. However, if someone has access to existing credit card or bank account information, a credit release will not help you. Be sure to take steps to protect your existing accounts. Regularly change your passwords for passwords, cancel lost cards and track your financial statements for fraudulent fees. Check with your credit card provider or bank to see if they provide text or email for questionable activity.
  • It can slow things down. After freezing your credit, you must temporarily lift it before applying for a new account, which may take a few days. It can also delay other transactions that routinely require a credit check, for example, to seek a new job or register for a new mobile plan.
  • It's free. In 201
    8, Congress passed a law that now requires all three major credit bureaus to offer free freezing for free. However, to fully freeze your credit, you must search each agency individually.
  • It can be done by phone or online. Call or send your information online to Equifax Experian and TransUnion to request a credit freeze.

Identity Theft Recovery Support

A credit freeze is a great way to prevent anyone from future abuse of your personal information. But if your current accounts are compromised, it is good to get some support to get things back to normal.

That's where Identity theft recovery coverage from Erie Insurance comes in. This coverage is designed to help you recover your credit for identity theft or fraud. You also get help from your own dedicated case manager who will go through the process step by step.

Better than? The cost of Identity Theft Recovery Coverage is about $ 20 a year, and can easily be added to ERIE® homeowners or tenants insurance. To get a quote, contact your local Erie Insurance agent .

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