Under Kansas law (KSA 50-723), identity theft victims can obtain a free "security freeze" on their credit reports. A security freeze prohibits the credit bureaus, with certain exceptions, from releasing your credit report or any information on it without your express authorization. Since most businesses will not open credit accounts without first requesting a credit report, a security freeze can help stop an identity thief from opening any more accounts in your name.
If you are not the victim of identity theft, the credit bureaus can charge you a fee of up to $5 for placing the freeze.
You must request the credit freeze individually with each of the three credit bureaus. Send your requests by certified mail to:
Equifax Security Freeze
P.O. Box 105788
Atlanta, GA 30348
Experian Security Freeze
P.O. Box 9554
Allen, TX 75013
Trans Union Security Freeze
P.O. Box 6790
Fullerton, CA 92834-6790
Each request should include the following:
- A copy of your police report, investigative report or complaint filed with the Attorney General's office to prove that you are an identity theft victim;
- Your full name, address, Social Security number and date of birth;
- Any previous addresses where you have lived in the last five years;
- Proof of your current address, such as a copy of a utility bill; and
- A copy of your government-issued identification card, such as a driver's license or passport.
You can also request a credit freeze online through the credit bureaus' websites. Click the links below to get started:
The credit bureaus will place the security freeze on your accounts within five days of receiving your letter.
Within 10 days of receiving your letter, the credit bureaus will send you a confirmation letter, which will include a PIN or password, which you will need to remove your security freeze or authorize release of your credit report to creditors.
If you wish to apply for credit while the security freeze is in place, you will need to contact the credit bureaus and ask that your security freeze be temporarily lifted to allow a creditor to access your report. You will need your PIN or password you received when you placed the security freeze to identify yourself to the credit reporting agencies. If you are not an identity theft victim, the credit bureaus may charge up to $5 for temporarily lifting the freeze. The credit bureaus are required to lift the freeze within three days of receiving your request.
Your existing creditors may still be able to access your credit report for the purposes of collecting the debt, account maintenance, monitoring, credit line increases or account upgrades and enhancements. Private collection agencies are allowed to access your report to assist in the collection of existing debt. Other exceptions include government agencies, potential employers and insurance providers.
You are also allowed to request a copy of your own report while your files are frozen.