How to Get Your Free Credit Report?

The FCRA or Fair Credit Reporting Act mandates that the three national credit reporting agencies are required to provide any person access to their credit report free of charge once every twelve months on the request of that person. The Federal Trade Commission in addition and the FCRA work jointly to make sure that these credit agencies keep correct and private files so that no person has to deal with unnecessary hassles due to this information not being correct.

Information that is collected by credit agencies is provided to such sources as potential employers, insurance companies and creditors as well as any other business that has a legitimate reason for needing this information. Some possible reasons for having a need for a person’s credit report include attempting to obtain a loan, rent or purchase a home or car, get some types of insurance and secure some jobs.

Together the FCRA and FACT or Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction act established the program allowing free annual credit reports in an effort to guarantee individuals specific rights associated with obtaining access to the information collected by credit agencies.

Each twelve months every person in the country has the express right to request their copy of this report in one of three ways listed below.

These three ways include:

  • By visiting the website at annualcreditreport.com
  • By telephone at 877-322-8228 or
  • By U.S. mail

A person should only use these sources for obtaining a credit report and should not contact the credit agencies directly however this does not mean that you have to request all three reports at the same time. You are guaranteed access to each of these whenever you choose to request it as long as it is not more than once in a twelve month period for each agency. It is often recommended however that this is done at the same time to prevent the hassle of having to remember different dates for when each report was requested.

One thing that every person should be aware of is to avoid websites that claim to offer copies of these reports through other websites as these are often not valid sources and their only objective is to gain access to your personal information which in the wrong hands can be disastrous especially with identity theft being such a serious issue in today’s world. Always be extremely careful when providing anyone access to your personal information especially when it concerns social security or credit card numbers.