I like to think of myself as a savvy shopper. Up on my consumer issues and always getting the best deal on this or that. So as I'm taking advantage of our fine President's directive to renegotiate mortgages for my properties, I'm naturally curious about my credit score. I'd heard you can get a yearly free credit report.
So I went to freecreditreport - dot - com (I don't want any of you darling people to click on the link accidentally) and ordered my report, all fine and good.
And two days later, I see a charge on my bank account. That I never authorized.
It took me two calls and a conference with a supervisor to get my "membership" removed. They made it difficult and like it was MY problem.
I since learned that the legit place to go for this is www.annualcreditreport.com. it is TRULY free.
But my story doesn't end here. I deal with consumer reporters on a regular basis as part of my job, and I've become quite friendly with some of them. So I took my rage, typed it up in some emails, and sent it along and asked that each one of them, who works for either a major metropolitan newspaper or TV station, warn their audiences about this dirty scam.
There are two things that I realized:
1. It's so easy to give up on something like this, and let that $15 slide. For every one person who fights the charge, there are probably 100 who don't. Those predatory businesses are cockroaches that must be squashed.
2. Never, ever, mess with someone who has consumer reporters' numbers plugged into her phone.
In other news, today I received a press release from someone named Michael Wangbickler. I just thought that was funny.