FreeCreditReport.com Doesn't Practice Good Security Hygiene

You’d think a credit monitoring service—even one as skeevy as freecreditreport.com—would take great pains to keep up the appearance of security and confidentiality. You’d be wrong. When Brian called to cancel their service he was asked to call out his social security number and his mother’s maiden name, even though it turned out they could easily access his account and cancel his service with only his phone number and birthday. Oh, and the first CSR hung up on him, but (sadly) that’s not really very newsworthy anymore.

I too like other readers had signed up for this service. After a few months (and a few $14.95) charges, I decided their service wasn’t worth it. I have no issue with the money spent, that is my fault..
 
However, when I went to cancel my monthly subscription, the first thing the operator asked for was my SSN… not the last 4, but the full SSN.. Why in the world would a company who’s job it is to alert you to credit issues ask for something like that? I mean, one of their services they offer is related to identity theft.
 
But it gets worse…
 
After the CSR was able to (through some sort of magic or wizardry) pull up my account via my phone number, in oder to “verify” who I was, she wanted my mother’s maiden name !!!! After being on-hold for 20 minutes while she escalated to a manger, the call was disconnected..
 
Can you imagine the audacity of a company who’s job it is to “protect” your credit report and help with identity theft asking for full SSN and Mother’s maiden name? Keep in mind, all I was trying to do was cancel a subscription to a credit monitoring agency I was able to register on-line with…
 
I then called back in, and this CSR was able to cancel my account with my phone number and birthday (yes, he too asked for my SSN and mother maiden name, but again, through some magic he pulled my account using other info. I will say, while he tried to up-sell me, (Sir, I realize you think this service is ineffective, but for only 29.95 a month you can add this service and get more info) and then tried to convince me that I still had some time left on my account, and I should call back closer to my billing date to make sure I got full utilization , I stood strong and insisted on canceling my account..
 
I think I will be checking my credit card to make sure they canceled it…

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. EWGF says:

    Looking forward to a follow up. It never ends well from what I’ve read here.

  2. SonicMan says:

    Lets see. Perhaps they wanted to make sure it was you?

    What use would the credit monitoring be if someone could easilly cancel and steal your identity?

    Of course, the hanging up on you part was something that should never have happened.

  3. mgy says:

    Hope you enjoy selling fish to tourists in t-shirts, BECAUSE THAT’S ALL YOU WILL BE DOING WITH FREECREDITREPORT.

  4. Verdigris says:

    Verifying the last 4 of your SSN is good enough for any company I’ve ever dealt with. Seems a little sketchy…

  5. mgy says:

    @mgy: Without. God damnit.

  6. Rando says:

    Searching for accounts can be done with almost any information that is on the account. You shouldn’t be surprised.

  7. Ben Clayton says:

    H-U-R-F That spells HURFCreditreport.com Durf Durf.

  8. Dancing Milkcarton says:

    freecreditreport.com sucks. They should be made to give up the domain (they grabbed it right after the government forced the big agencies to offer the ‘free annual credit report.’ )

    Hits by association – skeevy.

  9. Ron Seigel says:

    As worthless as this company is…

    They’re asking YOU for YOUR SSN – not the other way around. I don’t get the problem with that. Total non-issue IMHO.

    Some people are just way to paranoid.

  10. JN2 says:

    I got taken by them too. Had to change my bank account to another number to get them to stop stealing from my account. The bank (Chase) was less than helpful too. “Well, you gave them permission to withdraw, there is nothing we can do.” Closest I came to punching out a teller was that day. Never did get a credit report from them either. Now the fun loving morons at the REAL credit reporting agencies won’t give me my annual credit report because they tell me I already had one.

    I’m seriously considering going off the grid.

  11. riverstyxxx says:

    Why do they call themselves freecreditreport if they’re not even free? I mean, this is obviously the case since they’re on my tv at all hours of the night and no one is just going to hand out free service who has a serious advertising budget.
    And why this victim gave his social security number to a company that can’t even give itself an accurate name is beyond me.
    It’s like calling a pizza place a chinese food restaurant for gods’ sake.

  12. ChuckECheese says:

    @mgy: I don’t “get” that commercial. How does Free Credit Report.com relate to a situation where you become a pirate singing waiter? Help please?

  13. xrodion says:

    hope ti works out for you in the end

  14. SunnyLea says:

    @ChuckECheese: I don’t get it either, but it is very catchy! Stuck in my head right now.

    @riverstyxxx:

    The first month (report) is free.

    I know they get a lot of crap here, but I’ve actually been subscribed to them for over a year. I know you can get your REPORT for free with any of the services, but this service (which is run by one of the “big 3″, Experian) gives you your credit SCORE as well.

    Knowing that has served me in good stead, especially as I sought to rebuild my credit after a job loss.

  15. KarmaChameleon says:

    @SunnyLea: The problem is, pretty much every major credit card company offers this service, usually way cheaper, and with less hassle and more features.

    Having worked for a credit card company and having to clean up the monumental amounts of shit caused by FCR I don’t see why anyone would do business with them. They’re scam artists who prey on people’s ignorance.

  16. evslin says:

    @mgy: And when he gets a new car his legs will be sticking to the vinyl and his posse will be laughed at…

  17. jeffreyk1 says:

    Same thing happened to me… Seemed like I was talking to some offshore India Call Center. Then they asked me for my social and mom’s maiden name. I argued with them as I had my account # and all required info. They wouldn’t budge. Also, took me probably about 20-30 minutes to cancel.

  18. Kathleen Turner Overdrive says:

    And the commercials are awful.