Navigating Frozen Credit Reports
Frozen Credit Report
All LASER Credit Access’s customers have or will experience Frozen or locked Credit reports on their borrowers. The news is full of stories about data breaches. USA Today reported that Four members of China’s military have been charged with hacking into Equifax’s computer systems in 2017 and stealing the personal information of about 145 million Americans from the credit reporting agency.
In response to increased data breaches, consumers are putting security freezes on the credit bureau accounts.
Sept 21, 2018 – Federal Trade Commission release
Under the new Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, consumers in some states – those who previously had to pay fees to freeze their credit – will no longer have to do so.
A credit freeze, also known as a security freeze, restricts access to a consumer’s credit file, making it harder for identity thieves to open new accounts in the consumer’s name. The new law also allows parents to freeze for free the credit of their children who are under 16, while guardians, conservators, and those with a valid power of attorney can get a free freeze for their dependents.
You will likely see the volume of Frozen credit reports go up as new legislation is more widely understood
If you have the newest version of the app*, the credit report log related list will show the error message “FILE FROZEN DUE TO CONSUMER REQUEST”
How does a consumer unlock their credit report?
In order to unlock a frozen credit report the consumer must reach out to the credit bureau that has locked their credit report.
Experian File Freeze:
To remove a security freeze, visit www.experian.com/freeze. The phone will not get you a live person 1 888-EXPERIAN (1-888-397-3742)
TU File Freeze:
To remove a freeze from TU call 1-888-909-8872
Equifax file freeze:
The remove a freeze from Equifax, call 1-888-298-0045
Once the file is unlocked…
The consumer is the only one that can unfreeze their credit report, that must be done first.
If you try to re-run the credit report, you will likely get a copy of the report that says FILE FROZEN DUE TO CONSUMER REQUEST. LASER Credit Access can bypass the systems duplicate detection. This may or may not be set up in your Salesforce Org. If you have version 3.1 or lower you will need to upgrade to the most recent version. This can be done at no charge from the Salesforce AppExchange.
Once you have the latest version you can follow these directions to use Bypass Duplicate Detection.
How to Bypass Duplicate Detection
- On the object that the report is being run from there should be a field named Bypass Duplicate Detection. If it is not viewable please edit page layout and add it or reach out to us and we can assist with this.
- Please check that box, save and run the credit report as usual.
- Please note the file numbers on the prior credit report with the file frozen error message and the most current report run.
- If the Bypass Duplicate Detection field has been checked the file numbers will be different. That tells the user that it is a new credit report not a copy.
US Bill 2155 was signed into law on May 21, 2018. This law has several components, the most pressing of which requires that all Freezes, Thaws and Lifts to a credit file be free of charge to the consumer as of 09/21/2018. It also requires that the initial 90-day Fraud Alert messages remain on a consumer’s report for one year.
For every state in the United States, there will be no charge to a consumer to set a Freeze, request a Thaw (temporarily remove the freeze), or a Lift (permanently remove the freeze) from his credit file, effective 09/21/2018.
Navigating Frozen Credit Reports
All LASER Credit Access’s customers have or will experience Frozen or locked Credit reports on their borrowers. The news is full of stories about data breaches…