ID Theft Prevention
A credit freeze, also known as a security freeze, is a consumer right provided by Indiana law. Placing a security freeze on your credit reports can block an identity thief from opening a new account or obtaining credit in your name. A credit freeze keeps new creditors from accessing your credit report without your permission. If you activate a credit freeze, an identity thief cannot take out new credit in your name, even if the thief has your Social Security number or other personal information, because creditors cannot access your credit report.
Any Indiana resident can request a credit freeze free of charge. There is no fee for Indiana residents to place, temporarily lift, remove or request a new password or PIN. To place a freeze, either use each credit agency's online process or send a letter by certified mail to each of the three credit agencies. Make sure you freeze your credit with each credit bureau- a freeze with one bureau will not transfer to the others.
Equifax Security Freeze P.O. Box 105788
Atlanta, GA 30348
Place a Security Freeze Online with Equifax
Experian Security Freeze P.O. Box 9554
Allen, TX 75013
Place a Security Freeze Online with Experian
TransUnion LLC Security Freeze P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19016-2000
Place a Security Freeze Online with Trans Union
For each, you may be asked to provide:
- Your full name (including middle initial as well as Jr., Sr., II, III, etc.,) address, Social Security number, and date of birth
- If you have moved in the past five years, you will need the addresses where you have lived over the prior five years
- Proof of current address such as a utility or phone bill (alternative options include a bank, insurance, or credit card statement listing your full name and address)
- A photocopy of a government-issued identification card (state driver’s license or ID card, military identification, etc.)
*Click here for sample letters to send to all three credit bureaus.
To place a specific security freeze regarding utilities, you may do so through the National Consumer Telecom & Utilities Exchange.
Click here for an informational video on security freezes.
PROTECTED PERSON SECURITY FREEZE
As part of an ongoing effort by the Attorney General’s Office to help consumers protect themselves from identity theft and safeguard their credit, the Legislature in 2014 passed a new state law, Senate Enrolled Act 394 of 2014, creating the Protected Person Security Freeze. Because identity thieves could attempt to steal the information of individuals such as children or disabled adults who have a clean credit history in order to assume their identities and perpetrate fraud, the 2014 law offers a security freeze for protected consumers, similar to the credit freeze for adults. Parents can use it to protect their children from identity theft even if the minors don’t have credit yet. For mentally disabled adults who also should be protected against identity theft, their legal guardians can register them for the security freeze.
Below are links to the three credit bureaus Protected Person Security Freeze sites. For the free service, each of the three credit bureaus requires that consumers register a minor or a protected consumer in writing, by mail, rather than online. And each credit bureau has a slightly different format for registering for a security freeze for a minor or another protected consumer, so read the directions carefully.
Add a security freeze
Consumers who have questions about the Protected Person Security Freeze can contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-382-5516.
FREE CREDIT REPORT
A fraud theft alert entitles you to a copy of your credit report so you can review all the information in your file at each of the three credit reporting agencies. As an identity theft victim, you are also entitled to two free credit reports in the 12 months following your identity theft alert. Additionally, the Fair Credit Reporting Act provides all U.S. residents the right to obtain one free credit report per year from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, respectively. Credit reports will help you determine whether an identity thief has reported a change in your address or committed fraud and opened new accounts in your name. You can find at more about Understanding Your Rights at https://www.in.gov/attorneygeneral/consumer-protection-division/id-theft-prevention/restore/understanding-your-rights/