Credit freezes, like bus rides, are free for elders

For Pa. consumers looking to put a freeze on their credit in the wake of the Equifax personal data breach, it pays to be old, senior Inquirer readers have discovered and shared this week. As reported Wednesday, consumer research firm ValuePenguin.com found that Pennsylvania’s financial regulations  allow for higher fees than in most other states to set up a freeze, which then prevents identity thieves from opening credit cards accounts and taking out loans in your name. Now the research firm confirms — as older applicants have learned — that Pa. is also one of the states that requires a free credit freeze for anyone age 65 or older. Stipulated in the state’s Credit Reporting Agency Law, the waiver is triggered automatically when you apply for the service. A free freeze (or temporary lift) is also available to anyone who is a victim of identity theft and “provides or has provided the consumer reporting agency with a copy of a police report.” To apply for a freeze, call Equifax at 1-800-349-9960, Experian at 1-888-397-3742, and TransUnion at 1-888-909-8872.