Your credit report is essential to your personal financial stability. If you have a strong credit score, you’ll enjoy access to more borrowing opportunities with lower costs. That’s why it’s so important to protect yourself from con artists who steal identities and open loans in other people’s names.
Between 7% and 10% of Americans are victims of identity theft every year. However, you can take action so that even if a fraudster does get their hands on your identity, they can’t open new loans.
One such action is to request a TransUnion credit freeze any time you’re not actively seeking new loans.
What Is a TransUnion Credit Freeze?
A credit freeze is the most effective way to stop con artists from opening new loans in your name. When you freeze your credit, TransUnion will deny any request for your credit report from lenders, instead informing them that you’ve frozen your credit and it’s inaccessible.
However, that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to apply for loans.
TransUnion makes it easy to temporarily unfreeze your credit any time you need to apply for a new loan and re-freeze it once the application is complete. You can also request a freeze for your spouse, children, parents or deceased relative, adding a level of protection for those you love.
How To Request a TransUnion Credit Freeze
The easiest way to freeze your TransUnion credit report is to do so online. Follow these steps to get started.
Request a TransUnion Credit Freeze Online
- Click the “Add a Freeze” button on the TransUnion Credit Freeze webpage.
- Fill out the form to tell TransUnion who you are — you’ll need to provide your name, address, contact information, date of birth and Social Security number.
- Create an online TransUnion account by creating a username and password.
- Answer questions to verify your identity.
- Log in and freeze your credit.
Request a TransUnion Credit Freeze by Phone
If you’d rather speak to a TransUnion representative to freeze your credit, you can do so by calling 888-909-8872. They will ask you to set a 6-digit PIN so you can control your credit freeze in the future. The PIN needs to be something you’ll remember, but no one else will guess, and it can’t start with a zero.
Request a TransUnion Credit Freeze by Mail
You can also request a TransUnion credit freeze by mailing your request to:
P.O. Box 160
Woodlyn, PA 19094
You’ll need to include your name, address and Social Security number, as well as including a 6-digit PIN, just like with a phone request.
How To Unfreeze Your TransUnion Credit Report
When you freeze your credit with TransUnion, the company locks down your credit report, making it impossible to apply for loans in your name. If you need to apply for a loan, you’ll need to unfreeze your credit report to do so. Follow the steps below to get started:
- Click the “Unfreeze” button on the TransUnion Credit Freeze webpage.
- Use your username and password to log into your TransUnion account.
- Click the “Unfreeze” button to thaw your credit report and allow access for new loan applications.
While both freezing and unfreezing your credit is often instant, TransUnion notes that it may take up to an hour — so it’s best to plan ahead if you’re going to need to unfreeze your credit to apply for a loan.
Why Would You Want to Freeze Your Credit Report?
As mentioned above, between 7% and 10% of Americans are victims of identity theft each year. When identity theft happens, it can be quite expensive. In fact, the average identity theft victim in the United States lost $1,551 in 2021, but that’s just an average. In some cases, the cost of identity theft can be significantly higher.
When you freeze your credit report with TransUnion and other major credit reporting agencies, you can eliminate this cost even if a fraudster gets ahold of your personal information. That’s because credit freezes make it impossible for lenders to assess the risk associated with your loan, meaning they won’t approve loans in your name.
There’s no hassle involved, either — once you have a TransUnion account, you can freeze and unfreeze your credit at any time by simply logging in and clicking a button.
Good To Know
Freezing your credit with TransUnion is a good start, but your credit will be best protected if you freeze your credit with all three major credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax and Experian.
If you don’t already take advantage of credit freeze features from TransUnion, Equifax and Experian, now is the time to start. You don’t want to be one of the 7% to 10% of Americans who are the victims of identity theft every year. Make sure you keep your credit frozen any time you’re not actively seeking a loan to protect yourself from undue stress and expense.
Common Questions About TransUnion's Credit Freeze FeaturesIf you've never frozen your credit in the past, you likely have a few questions about the process. Find the answers to the most common questions about credit freezes below.
- How do I put a freeze on all three credit bureaus?
- TransUnion, Equifax and Experian are all separate companies, so there's no way to freeze your credit with all three reporting agencies at once. However, they all offer credit freeze features as part of free online accounts. Simply sign up for these accounts and freeze and unfreeze your credit as you need.
- Can I unfreeze TransUnion online?
- Yes, it's easy to unfreeze your TransUnion credit report online. Simply click "Unfreeze" and log in to get started.
- Do I need to call all three credit bureaus to unfreeze my credit?
- While you do need to freeze your credit with all three credit bureaus for the credit freeze to be effective, you do not need to call – TransUnion, Equifax and Experian all offer the option of freezing your credit through an online account.
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