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Fourth credit bureau offers free security freezes

[Photo with this story by via Flickr.]

We all know about the three major credit bureaus, but a viewer called Jesse, claiming there was a fourth one.

“I was actually surprised at how many companies have my information,” Chris Wysong said.

After hearing about the Equifax data breach, and seeing Jesse’s reports, retired techie Chris Wysong decided to take action.

“I just decided to go ahead and freeze everything,” Wysong said.

Wysong froze his credit through the three big bureaus: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian.

Wysong paid ten dollars to each credit bureau to do so.  But then, Wysong found something unexpected.

“I found a company called Innovis,” Wysong explained.  “That is also a credit bureau, and that took me by surprise.”

Innovis is a fourth credit bureau probably has your information, too.  According to the U.S. Public Interest Group, Innovis is used by companies to pre-screen consumers for marketing.

However, the company is not on the Federal Trade Commission’s website’s suggested list of bureaus where consumers should request a freeze.

But protecting your credit with Innovis has a major benefit.  Innovis provides freezes — for FREE.

According to its website, there is no charge for the addition, temporary lift, or removal of a security freeze.

That’s something Jesse has been fighting for, for months.

It’s also something Wysong thinks all credit bureaus should do.

“I would love that to happen,” Wysong said.  {Credit bureaus} should give {customers} the right to freeze it.”

So the question remains: Do you need to freeze your credit through Innovis, too?  Most experts say not necessarily.  But if want to be extra cautious — go ahead.

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