Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Free with Purchase" Credit Reports

Lately I seem to have been seeing a lot of commercials sponsored by a company advertising so-called free (but actually not) credit reports. This ad has been on TV for some time. A guy and his guitar chirp along about how his life has taken a turn to the better since he got his credit report for free. How lucky he was. At the end in small print I manage to see “with purchase” before the commercial fades out and a new one starts with a kid frolicking about yogurt. Or something of that sort.

I considered posting the commercial’s website address as a warning but I don’t even want to give it bad advertisement. Here’s the only free resource for credit reports: https://www.annualcreditreport.com
(And it’s also possible to request the report by mail or phone).

Note folks can only apply for one free credit report per year from either Experian, Transunion, and/or Equifax (so people could apply for one credit report from one or all these three agencies, but once they receive it they would need to wait a year before applying again).

I also had a whole spiel about how FTC (Federal Trade Commision, that links to the free credit report resource) doesn’t resort to annoying singing commercials, but then I found out that’s not true.

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