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I recently received notice from a major company that my personal information (SSN, DOB, address, etc.) has been compromised. As such, I would like to put a freeze on my credit. However, I have no credit history, and am not planning to start building one any time soon. Can I still have a freeze put on my (lack of) files?

Jurisdiction Note: I am in California.


Experian attempts to explain this in context of freezing one's child's credit history1:

Having no credit report is better protection than having a credit report with a freeze. If an identity thief applies for credit using your children’s information, the lender will get a response indicating no credit report exists with those identifiers, and also may receive an alert that the Social Security number belongs to a minor.

That being said, I'm not a minor - and I don't see any reason why a thief couldn't apply for credit just because I don't have a current credit report.

Experian also states that2:

Some states now require that a credit report be created if none exists in order to add a credit freeze.

However, I have not been able to find any requirement for that in my state's credit laws.

  • Why does this remind me of "if you had no FBI file, requesting a copy starts one"... – keshlam Mar 26 '15 at 14:18
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As per TransUnion

Placing a freeze on your credit report will prevent lenders and others from accessing your Credit Report entirely, which will prevent them from extending credit. With a Security Freeze in place, even you will need to take special steps when you wish to apply for any type of credit.

Because of more stringent security features, you will need to place a Security Freeze separately with each of the three major credit reporting companies if you want the freeze on all of your credit files. A Security Freeze remains on your credit file until you remove it or choose to lift it temporarily when applying for credit or credit-dependent services.

That being said, if there is no Credit File for you, the reporting agencies might not be able to put a freeze on your credit as there is nothing to freeze.

Also, if there is no credit file generated yet for you, it's more likely that most of the applications for credit cards will get rejected. But it will be better to place an Initial Fraud Alert on your Credit.

Federal Trade Commission says

Ask 1 of the 3 credit reporting companies to put a fraud alert on your credit report. They must tell the other 2 companies. An initial fraud alert can make it harder for an identity thief to open more accounts in your name. The alert lasts 90 days but you can renew it.

Three national credit reporting companies keep records of your credit history. If someone has misused your personal or financial information, call 1 of the companies and ask for an initial fraud alert on your credit report. A fraud alert is free. You must provide proof of your identity. The company you call must tell the other companies about your alert.

An initial fraud alert can make it harder for an identity thief to open more accounts in your name. When you have an alert on your report, a business must verify your identity before it issues credit, so it may try to contact you. The initial alert stays on your report for at least 90 days. You can renew it after 90 days. It allows you to order one free copy of your credit report from each of the three credit reporting companies. Be sure the credit reporting companies have your current contact information so they can get in touch with you.

  • 3
    Thanks for your input - we typically mark block quotes using a ">" at the beginning of them, and include a citation of where you copied the information from. In this case, you copied verbatim from TransUnion and the Federal Trade Commission without any citations or quotes, thus falsely creating the impression that these were all your own thoughts and writings. – Prosun Mar 26 '15 at 6:09
  • @Prosun, thanks for letting me know first... just getting started here – Saagar Elias Jacky Mar 26 '15 at 14:31

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