The Equifax child credit freeze process is by far the most consumer-friendly of the three credit bureaus.
But alas, the Equifax procedure for requesting a “security freeze on a protected consumer or minor” also presents a couple of significant security risks.
Like TransUnion, Equifax asks that you mail the required documentation to a P.O. Box. Security experts advise against sending any sensitive information, like your Social Security number, via standard mail. In fact, there are even laws against printing a full Social Security number on mailed documents in some states. While FedEx and UPS do provide more secure mail options, they do not deliver to P.O. Boxes, and Equifax only offers a P.O. Box address.
After I raised these concerns, Equifax provided me with a fax number. While it is not as secure as the “secure upload” option offered by Experian, I applaud Equifax for responding to the security concern. The bureau has not publicly made this fax option available; however, they have agreed to allow me to make it public via this blog.
#NewsMom NOTE: Experian Child Credit Freeze Warning: Parents Beware of Mailing Sensitive Info
We recently discovered that Experian will no longer allow parents to use the online upload portal and are requiring you mail in sensitive documents despite laws intended to prevent that. We are investigating and hope to provide an alternative soon. Please check back for an update. In the meantime, we do not recommend mailing in the required documents.
Like TransUnion, Equifax also asks that you give your Social Security number to an Indian call center rep (without an employee ID) before they transfer you to the proper U.S. department.
ALSO SEE: “You Need My Social Security Number But You Won’t Give Me Your Employee ID?”
In response to these concerns, Equifax says it has reminded call center reps that they can use an address or other identifying information instead of a Social Security number.
Equifax Security Freeze
- Protected Consumer Information Web Link:
- Equifax File Freeze Direct Phone Number:
- 1- 888-836-6351
- Equifax Fax#:
NOTE: We HAVE confirmed this number IS accurate.
- Equifax Security Freeze Address:
Equifax Information Services LLC
P.O. Box 105788
Atlanta, GA 30348-5788
- Required Documents:
Compile your documents.
- Child Social Security Card
- Parent’s Social Security Card (Or Birth Certificate)
- Parent Driver’s License (Or Other Government Issued ID)
- Evidence of Home Address (Bank Statement / Utility Bill)
- Child’s Birth Certificate
Fax your documents
- Equifax Fax#: 1-888-826-0707
I advise calling Equifax before faxing your documents and speaking to someone in the U.S. Security Freeze Department to ensure they are awaiting your fax.
Equifax will allow you to call back 48 hours later to confirm that they have successfully received your information.
Be very careful to dial the fax number correctly. You do not want to accidentally send this sensitive information to an unknown fax.
NOTE: While Equifax does offer a P.O. Box address to mail your documents, security experts strongly advise against sending these sensitive documents via standard mail.
Record your child’s pin numbers in a safe place.
Once your child’s credit file is frozen, Equifax will send you a letter in the mail confirming that the “Security Freeze” has been added to your child’s account. They will provide you with a 10-digit pin number. You will need this number to lift the freeze when your child turns 18.
Equifax does not allow you to temporarily lift or “thaw” a Protected Consumer Security Freeze. You will have to remove it completely when the child is of age and then reapply for a regular security freeze (which is a very simple online process).
It is very important to keep the pin number in a safe place. Losing that number will complicate the process of unfreezing the file when your child is old enough to apply for credit of his or her own.
Consider storing the number in a safe deposit box with other important documents. You can also record the number by sending it to yourself in a discrete email. Do not obviously indicate what the number is for in case your email gets hacked.
Leave a Reply