In the wake of the massive security breach at credit reporting agency Equifax, the Maine Bureau of Consumer Credit Protection is urging Mainers to take the matter seriously and take steps to protect their identity, financial accounts and credit reports.
Bureau Principal Examiner David Leach says, while there are state and federal laws in place to protect consumers in the event of a data breach, Mainers have an important tool they can use.
“Maine has the best file freeze law in the United States. You can freeze your credit file in Maine. You can lock it, unlock it for free. Most states don’t have this,” he says.
Leach says Equifax provides an automated, secure line for consumers to immediately freeze their credit reports. He says in a couple of weeks, Equifax will send a letter that provides a personal information number allowing consumers to freely unlock and relock their credit files.
Leach says his agency strongly recommends freezing credit files with all three major credit reporting agencies.
Credit file freeze information is one of the tools available on the Bureau of Consumer Credit Protection website.