Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh issues press release reminding Maryland residents a new law goes into effect on October 1st, allowing consumers to freeze their credit report free of charge.
“A credit freeze is one of the most effective methods of protecting yourself against identity theft,” said Frosh in a statement. “The recent Equifax data breach is a clear example of why consumers should use every available resource to help keep their personal information out of the hands of identity thieves.”
A credit freeze conceals the consumer’s credit report, deterring creditors from opening new cellphone, utility and credit card accounts for identity thieves. The credit freeze will remain in effect until the consumer requests it removed.
Under the new law, fees are waived for freezing credit reports. The $5 fee for temporarily “thawing” a credit report is the consumers’ responsibility, as they are not waived. Fees for temporary thaws and credit freezes are waived for all identity theft victims with a police report.