This isn’t the first time, but now the State of Florida Office of the Attorney General is investigating FreeCreditReport.com. You’ll notice I don’t link to the site. This site, run by credit reporting agency Experian is taking advantage of the ruling that anyone can receive a free annual credit report from each of the three major agencies.
FreeCreditReport.com is not the website that offers free credit reports in conjunction with this directive. It’s misleading, and here’s the fine print on the site:
When you order your free report here, you will begin your free trial membership in Triple AdvantageSM Credit Monitoring. If you don’t cancel your membership within the 30-day trial period, you will be billed $12.95 for each month that you continue your membership. If you are not satisfied, you can cancel at any time to discontinue the membership and stop the monthly billing; however, you will not be eligible for a pro-rated refund of your current month’s paid membership fee.
FreeCreditReport.com has been investigated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and has been required to pay a significant penalty. However, they apparently have been allowed to keep operating.
The only way to get your free annual credit report is by going through AnnualCreditReport.com. To check your credit score for free at any point, you can use Credit Karma.
If you have already exhausted your free annual report, you can sign-up for a 7-day free trial at GoFreeCredit.com. You’ll receive three credit scores and well as three credit reports (with an easy option to cancel if you choose not to keep the trial membership), access to your scores each month and daily credit monitoring to help protect your Identity and Credit.
Hat tip to Red Tape Chronicles for the news about the Florida AG investigation.
Updated January 7, 2013 and originally published November 16, 2006. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.