How Do I Get My Government Credit Report?
Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you are entitled to ask for, and receive, a free copy of your government credit report once a year. The FCRA serves to promote accurate information, held in privacy, by consumer reporting companies
Contained in your credit report is personal information like how you pay your bills, any arrests, bankruptcies or legal actions, as well as your full name and address. The consumer reporting companies authorized by the government sell these reports to people interested in your security risk when you apply for a loan or insurance, or as an employee or a tenant.
Why would you need to see your credit report? The report has certain information that could affect your suitability for a loan, and even the cost of that loan. You may want to check that the information is accurate if you want a mortgage or other loan, or to apply for a new job or for insurance.
Identity theft is a growing crime and checking the accuracy of your credit report helps to protect against it. If you have applied for, but been refused, credit, your credit report might hold information that was responsible.
There are currently just three nationwide companies that are credit reporting agencies, and they are contactable through a combined website, a toll-free phone number and a mail address. You can request one credit report from each company within any year. Remember, that you do have rights under the FCRA.
The website is at www. Annualcreditreport. Com; the mailing address is ACRRS, PO Box 105281, Atlanta. GA 30348-5281; and the phone number is 1-877-322-8228. You need to first request an application form which needs to be filled in and sent off by mail or email. The information you will need to provide on the application is your name and address; your Social Security number; your date of birth and details of any recent change of address or name. You may be asked some personal questions to identify yourself.
The website given above is the only authorized website for credit reports. Other websites exist that claim they provide the free reports, but you usually end up paying over money or parting with personal information. Watch out for the ones that offer you a "free" service with fine print that says they will charge you after the "free" trial period is over. These website are not official and cannot access your free government credit report.
The official website will never send emails asking for personal information or money, so you can be confident that your privacy is safe when you apply for your annual government credit report.
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