The Federal Trade Commission is seeking comment on the impact and effectiveness of state credit freeze laws in response to a recommendation included in the President’s Identity Theft Task Force Strategic Plan issued in April 2007. According to the FTC, 39 states and the District of Columbia have enacted credit freeze laws, each with specific requirements regarding the availability and use of a freeze. Additionally, the FTC reports that each of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies offers commercially-developed freeze options, also known as CDFOs, to residents of the remaining states and to residents of the states where the credit freeze option is available only to victims of identity theft. The FTC is seeking comment also on the CDFOs. The FTC’s assessment of the impact and effectiveness of credit freezes is intended to help policymakers consider the appropriateness of a federal credit freeze law.

The FTC is inviting written comments from interested parties that are specific and include any available studies, surveys, research, costs estimates and other empirical data. The FTC is seeking comment on 49 specific questions covering, among other topics, the experiences of consumers, users of credit reports and consumer reporting agencies.

Written comments must be received by the FTC by February 25, 2008.

  • Judy Scheiderer and Margaret Stolar