AnnualCreditReport.com Scam or Legit? See My Review For 2014

Posted by CreditCardGuru

AnnualCreditReport.com is the only website for free credit reports that is mandated and authorized by federal government, but it’s not without problems.

In 2003 President George W. Bush signed into law the Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act. One of its provisions required each of the three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) to provide consumers free access to their credit reports every 12 months.

This act gave birth to the AnnualCreditReport.com website, which contrary to popular belief, is not a government-run site. Rather, it is operated by Central Source LLC, which is a joint venture created by the three credit reporting agencies – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.

Be warned: their website does NOT provide free credit scores! If you try to get your scores through it, you may have to enroll in a dubious “free” trial with the credit bureaus that’s extremely hard to cancel during the 7-day grace period. After that you will be charged.

There are only four ways for consumers to get their real FICO scores. The vast majority of website, including the offers from the bureaus through AnnualCreditReport.com, use imitation scoring models that are not FICOs. What they offer you is NOT used by lenders or creditors; it’s merely a score for “educational purposes.”

If you want to get your real FICO, there are several sources licensed to provide it directly to consumers as of Q3 2014:

  1. (PAID) Pay $19.95 to MyFICO (FICO’s website) for each score from each credit bureau every single time you want to check it.
  2. (PAID) Pay $19.95 to Equifax every single time you want to check your Equifax FICO.
  3. (FREE) With a Discover card, you get your TransUnion FICO for free every month on your statement:


Even though checking your reports through the AnnualCreditReport.com website won’t get you your scores, it’s a great way to check your credit health and to make sure all the information is accurate. However, since going live, the site has been the source of quite a few complaints:

Complaint #1: Confusing name

The similarly titled FreeCreditReport.com took a lot of criticism for its similar sounding name (side note: they now focus on their other site, FreeCreditScore.com instead). But in all fairness, it’s not like AnnualCreditReport.com has the best name either.

Why? Because with the word “annual” in there, many people assume that means once per year. They think it means they can check their credit report from each of the three bureaus once per calendar year (example: Check Equifax once in 2014, once in 2015, and so forth).

Unfortunately, that’s not how it actually works. Rather than going by calendar year, it goes by every 12 months.

When the end of the calendar year rolls around – like the fourth quarter – I regularly hear from consumers who rush to check all three credit reports, thinking the clock will reset on January 1. It’s not until the following year when they discover they will have to wait twelve full months after checking before they can do it again.

Self disclosure time: At one point I even believed this was how it worked and made that same mistake. It’s best to stagger your requests by 3 or 4 months, in other words, so you can check all three credit bureaus once per year. That way you can maintain a rolling status check on your credit and not have to wait a full year to see it again.

Complaint #2: Misleading credit score ads

When using the Annual Credit Report website, you will be bombarded with paid ads; some clearly identified as such, others not so much.

The TransUnion report is the one I hear the most complaints about. Here’s why…

"free" credit score

The “I want my free credit score” is an advertisement and so is the Score tab which is next to the Report tab at the top.

Click and you will be taken to this page (I took this screenshot in an earlier year):

"free" credit score - page 2 for offer

It’s not until after you click the “FREE SCORE” button above where you are taken to a page which fully explains that you are actually enrolling in a 7-day trial. Yeah, technically it is free but if you don’t cancel, you will be automatically billed at the regular price (which was $14.95 per month last I checked).

"free" credit score - page 3 for offer

Now in all honesty, I actually don’t have a problem with these types of “free” trial offers. I don’t think they are a scam as long the terms are clearly and prominently identified (in order words, if the consumer truly knows what they’re signing up for). But, the way this “free” trial is displayed *might* mislead a customer and be confusing to those who erroneously believe they’re on a government site.

Complaint #3: Website not working

I have heard people allege that there is some sort of AnnualCreditReport.com scam going on when they can’t access the website. Their theory is that it’s allegedly used as a trick, to deter them from the free report and, instead, go to credit bureau’s website directly and buy a report.

site not workingCoincidentally, while writing this review I actually encountered Experian not being available (pictured left).

But does this make AnnualCreditReport.com a scam? Definitely not. That conspiracy theory is nonsense.

When a bureau is unavailable like this, it’s probably due to routine site maintenance or some other temporary issue. If that happens, just check back later and it should be working. For me, that message was gone 20 minutes later.

Conclusion? This is frustrating to encounter but don’t worry, this is NOT a scam. Just be patient and return a bit later.

Complaint #4: Can’t confirm your ID

A couple times when I’ve used the AnnualCreditReport.com website, I wasn’t able to pull all my reports. A message would be spit back saying they can’t confirm my identity and to get the report through this site, I would have to jump through hoops to validate my ID. If I recall correctly, it involved mailing in proof.

On the forum I have seen people say there is a scam going on when this happens. But it’s not a scam or trick. The truth is that they really do have to validate you’re the real deal before handing over your personal report.

Complaint #5: Peddling identity theft protection

ID theft protectionThanks to all those TV commercials for LifeLock and Identity Guard, the business of selling monthly ID protection subscriptions seems to be hotter than ever (but it’s debatable whether they’re justified).

So I guess it comes as no surprise that we’re getting bombarded with ID theft prevention ads when all we want to do is get our free credit reports.

But at the end of the day…

…this is still by far the best site to get your credit reports for free. Despite the complaints, AnnualCreditReport.com is NOT a scam.

Sure, the quality of AnnualCreditReport.com might not be the best, but it’s still the only legit place you can get a truly free report without having to enroll in some trial offer… as long as you don’t do so accidentally!

But if you want your FICO for free, you should get a Discover It or one of these offers from Barclays:

Updated July 25, 2014


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Editorial Disclosure: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

153 comments... read them below or add your own

  1. joe November 18, 2014 at 4:24PM

    I should have known better to even go to this site!!!!!!! annualcreditreport.com…..it took all of my info and when I clicked to get my score the page failed…also I went to try and go to the site again and the page failed…so It’s OBVIOUS that they took my info and run!!! BASTARDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Robin November 13, 2014 at 8:52AM

    I want to know about hard inquiry. I went from a 711 credit score in June 2014 to a credit score of 598 in October. How can I stop this? A few I ask for. Now the same companies are running hard inquiries without my permission. How can this be stopped?

  3. George October 23, 2014 at 12:59PM

    Well – I signed into Annualcreditreport.com today. Tried to complain to Central Source LLC but there is no phone number listed in atlanta, GA. anyone have a number for them??? WHAT ABOUT A GOVERNMENT AGENCY COMPLAINT SITE????
    – more -
    Transunion – said I got a report from them already in last 12 months -TOTAL LIE!
    result: NO REPORT.
    – more -
    Equifax – indicated I had a new mortgage – TOTAL LIE (I’ve rented all my life.)
    I answered NONE of the Above to all the questions – I got NO identity or REPORT.
    – more -
    Experian: REPORT OK except one fictional removing it became impossible. – more -
    AnnualCreditReport.com would not allow me back in to investigate or complain about Transunion and Equifax problems because it now considers that I’ve been successful in getting my credit reports!

  4. specjalisci finsowi October 7, 2014 at 7:06AM

    This blog is very interesting, i will subscribe this website!

  5. K. B. September 27, 2014 at 10:43AM

    Several months ago I requested my free 3 credit reports from AnnualCreditReport.com. They sent me 2 identical copies of Trans Union Credit Report and 1 copy of Equifax credit report, but none of Experian credit report. I made several attempt to receive a copy of Experian but every time they refuse, saying that their records indicate they sent me a copy. Simply they are crooks!

  6. T POLONUS September 16, 2014 at 9:37AM

    AFTER COMPLETING ALL THE REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION, I AM ADVISED THAT MY REPORT CANNOT BE DELIVERED VIA EMAIL, AS PROMISED. THIS WITHOUT ANY EXPLANATION. RATHER, I AM TOLD I NEED TO PHYSICALLY SEND IN TONS OF ADDITIONAL PERSONAL INFORMATION (DRIVERS LICENSE, W2, SOCIAL SECURITY CARD, AND MORE) TO GET A ‘MAILED REPORT).’ REALLY? I THEN WENT ON TO WRITE A CONTACT REPORT OF THIS TO ANNUALCREDITREPORT.COM BUT THEY REFUSED TO PROCESS IT (?) WITHOUT, AGAIN, ANY EXPLANATION OF WHY. IT APPEARS THAT ANNUAL CREDIT REPORT.COM IS JUST ANOTHER MISLEADING PHISHING OPERATION TO GET CONSUMER INFORMATION. I WILL BE ADVISING ALL OF MY CLIENTS AND CUSTOMERS TO STEER CLEAR OF YOU. YOIU HAVE WASTED MY TIME, TIME I WILL NEVER BE ABLE TO GET BACK.

  7. Jerry August 16, 2014 at 11:32AM

    I gave it a try, 66% success. TransUnion was “not available” or some such error and listed a phone number, but still blocked me out for a year for their problem. Equifax and Experian worked fine.

  8. H. Beitman August 2, 2014 at 4:51PM

    My wife and I have used AnnualCreditReport.com for many years. I don’t know what changed, but for the past couple years we can not get past the identity challenge page for Experian and Equifax. Today, I was trying to get an Experian report but it did not even ask challenge questions, it just said I must mail in the form. This happens on Experian and Equifax, but not on Transunion – which has worked the last time we tried it.

    It seems as thought they want to make it as difficult as possible to get the reports.

  9. Z July 30, 2014 at 3:17PM

    annualcreditreport.com is a frustrating joke!
    I was unable to see ANY of the 3 reports, and now must wait 12 months before trying again!
    Both Experian and Equafax said that I was not “eligible” to view my reports online, and wanted me to mail in a request with copies of my government issued IDs and proof of address.
    TransUnion seemed as though it would go through, after I successfully completed the multiple choice question test proving my identity, BUT upon continuing, it lead me to a blank webpage where the URL continuously incremented (https://anualcreditreport.transunion.com/coss/common/viewReportCRS334.jsp?cb=FA)
    I finally closed it after it reached 731 or so.

    Trying to “contact” annualcreditreport.com about this anomaly was too much apparently. After filling out the details of my complaint, their webpage said there were errors in my “description.” After trying 3 times to fix whatever errors they thought were in my description, another error popped up telling me that I had exceeded the maximum number of attempts to fix the errors.
    SERIOUSLY!?!?!?! ( >_<')

  10. Jim July 24, 2014 at 8:30AM

    I just attempted to get my reports from anualcreditreport.com and the transunion one is a crock of B.S. the web page would not load after 3 attempts, the last attempt after 15 minutes it said sorry, you can access by phone or mail, hell with that!

    Then the Equafax said they couldn’t do it online, and I needed to send in documents and all sorts of hoop jumping crap, not likely to ever happen.

    The only one that went through easily was Experion, they will send it by mail.

    All I wanted was to see my 3 report for free online now, not days from now, not weeks probably for the other 2.

    Just an absolute load of B.S. it should not be this way.

    I have a false report on my record due to a inherited property foreclosure on it. I was not ever on the loan, and I did not sign any documentation with the lender, just an unfortunate casualty of the housing market collapse and no will, the house value collapsed during year long probate during 2008. 6 years later I find out through my car insurance provider when they asked me secret questions to login about that loan, of course I could not answer due to it never being my loan.

    My car insurance went up, I have been denied credit twice in a years, this is probably why, but I don’t know now due to worthless annualcreditreport.com I can not.

  11. Carolyn July 17, 2014 at 6:56AM

    Had the exact same thing happen with Equifax. Not only did it ask the bogus questions about mortgage and car loans I tried twice and it gave two different years for when these supposed loans were opened. No problems with the other two. Called the number and got the same thing back in the mail. Next time I’ll save myself the trouble and just pay the dollar,since guess what there wasn’t anything on my report that shouldn’t be there go figure..

  12. Paul Aye July 9, 2014 at 5:25PM

    As I understand it, AnnualCreditReport.com will not give you credit SCORES, you will receive credit REPORTS. They are not the same.

    Bill Fair and Earl Isaac founded Fair Isaac and Company in 1956 which is now called FICO. They create scores between 300 and 850 for almost every person in the U.S.A. These scores are used by lenders to help them make loan decisions.

    Credit REPORTS are compiled by Equifax, Experian, and Transunion from information they receive from creditors like automobile dealers and department stores. It will list information from, for example, Sears, indicating that the person has been late in making payments or is delinquent.

    Your article is confusing because after the first three short paragraphs on REPORTS, which is what your article is titled, you go on and on about FICO. That should be in a separate review.

  13. John O July 8, 2014 at 10:15PM

    Thank you EXPERIAN! I got my report online from Experian (by way of annualcreditreport.com ) without any problem. I’m the one that reported (search on my name below) that in February 2013 I was able to get my EQUIFAX report OK but in February 2014 (and I tried a few times after, all after the 1-year limit had passed from my previous report), I was UNable to get my EQUIFAX report because it asked me questions about mortgages and car loans that I didn’t and never had, and I correctly answered None Of The Above, but still it said it couldn’t verify my identity and I must snail mail in my request including my Social Security card or a pay statement with my SS# on it, and some other ID. Jerks.

    Anyway, the bottom line is, if you can’t get your EQUIFAX report, that sucks, but go ahead and try to get a report EXPERIAN (which like I said in the above paragraph, I just succeeded at) and/or TRANSUNION (which I will try in November when one year has passed since my last report from them).

    And f.u. EQUIFAX.

  14. Tom June 24, 2014 at 1:00PM

    What if I complete a pdf request form and mail it in? Can I still get all three scores? Would I still get slammed with fees?

  15. Ken June 17, 2014 at 9:14AM

    I just fell for the Trans Union Free Credit score and $1 credit report. When I called Trans Union to complain about then charging me $17 they told me to look at their terms of agreement at the bottom of the sign in page. Very small in print and translucent ( difficult to see ) are the terms that say I have a 7 day trial and will pay $17 a month. Yep they got me, will not refund my money either. At the end of the call I was asked if I would like to take a short customer survey , I said “: I’D LOVE TO ! )…They hung up on me

  16. Johna288 May 28, 2014 at 7:24PM

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  17. Marissa May 27, 2014 at 9:09PM

    After doing some research I found that annual credit report was the only half reputable website so I decided to give it a try. All three reports came out for me and everything seemed legit. I used a desktop instead of my iPad, not sure if that had anything to do with my success. I followed the directions and tried not to stray onto any ads or anything saying “get your credit SCORE” because that’s what’s going to cost you money. Just be patient, don’t click back or refresh a million times. The identity questions were somewhat hard but I managed to get through. It let me save the first 2 to my computer as a PDF for future reference and the 3rd had similar info so I chose to skip printing the 30 pages.

    Hope this is helpful! The reports were very helpful for me!

    • John O May 30, 2014 at 10:04AM

      Glad it worked for you. All 3 sites worked for me last year just fine. Its when I tried Equifax for the second time (more than 12 months from the last time I tried it, so I’m entitled to a free report from them again) did I encounter these ridiculous questions asking me if I had a certain mortgage from some list of banks and a certain car loan from some other list of banks, and I correctly answered no to both questions. And got the nonsense about I need to mail in my request with various forms of identity. I’ve tried a few times with the same results.

      I know how to use a browser, and no, I didn’t click on any get your credit score link. Good luck next year when you try.

  18. Danica May 25, 2014 at 11:43AM

    Same situation as everyone else. I noticed on Credit Karma there was a debt of 8k from chase, 4k from two different midland fund- I called the midland fund- they named off two accounts they wanted me to pay immediately on- these accounts were last paid in June 2006/ this is May 2014- 8 years later!!

    chase I’ve never banked with- I’ve had two accounts- USB which I left & ex took over and a credit union I left 10 years ago!!

    I went online to ACR and the same- ‘page not responding’ tried later ‘security code not correct’ (and had to refill out my info at least 8 times) once that went through- they couldn’t verify my identity (by the mortgage question) was informed I had to send in all this identity verification- No money to be paying to get copies of everything, then mail it certified w/signature ect-

    I ended up calling the 800 number to request by phone and had no issues (yet) this was the 19th- supposedly it takes 15 days- a bit long but okay!

    I’ve ALWAYS had these issues with the ACR – hopefully my disputes go good ;-)

    good luck everyone- if you can’t get it via the site- call it in :-)

  19. Richard May 16, 2014 at 12:26AM

    No doubt “annualcreditreport.com” is the only site “federally” approved.

    It’s as F’d up as our government. Billions with a “Big B” spent on health care websites that don’t work.

    Nothing new here.

    I love my F**king government and my government loves F**king me.

    Annual Credit is a joke. I does not work. Don’t waste your time.

  20. Neil May 13, 2014 at 10:12AM

    In response to a NY Times article by Ann Carrns, reprinted in today’s Boston Globe (Personal Finance, page B10, 5/13/14), I went to Annualcreditreport.com and was stonewalled unless I agreed to a “free trial” of some sort of monitoring/protection scheme, which I refused to do. Ms Carrns should obtain and report these facts rather than mislead readers who are thinking they can access no strings free credit reports.

  21. Lee May 5, 2014 at 6:13PM

    Please file a complaint with the ftc.gov they need to hear these complaints. I just finished my complaint and hope they stop the abuse at this site. Especially if they could possibly be getting grants or paid for this service. That is our tax money should it be the case. There are way too many complaints here and mostly the same things are and have been happening. I have been trying to get my 3 reports since January, and nothing yet!!! I just contacted my representative today to report this issue. They said they will see to it in the morning. PLEASE report all these issues!! Posting them here does nothing to bring them into compliance. Also could case id theft if sent through the mail nd you don’t get them.

    • John O May 10, 2014 at 11:53AM

      Thank you thank you. Also, when some media source, like Consumers Reports, Money Magazine, a newspaper article, etc. blathers about how you can get free credit reports once a year from each of the 3 credit bureaus at annualcreditreport.com, one should write back and tell them their information is old, and that is no longer true. And then of course provide the specifics of your experience.

    • Ann June 10, 2014 at 5:28AM

      Lee, I just made a report to the FTC too. I was only able to get an experience report and then booted off the site

      • Ann June 10, 2014 at 5:30AM

        I mean I only received an Experian report, (darn auto correct)

  22. Reticuli May 5, 2014 at 4:56PM

    Transunion credit score page won’t populate and is blank. Comment page returns: “Tell us more is invalid. Please try again”

  23. dd April 8, 2014 at 10:51AM

    Every Time i have ever tried to get my report from transunion i always have a problem. Always. I have to try it multiple times on different days to get it. Takes me like 2 weeks to finally get the annual site to work correctly to get it. The other two i have no problem. Last year i really needed the report so i had to pay for it, by going to the site directly. I do think transunion tries to scam. There is always a problem if you continually try you may get it to work after a couple of weeks.

  24. Vlad March 28, 2014 at 4:43PM

    So, I checked the USA Government site for a reference at AnnualCreditReport.com and found it at the FAQ section.
    After that I tried 3 times to get any score from this site, and every time it said about error in the security code at the bottom.
    It’s lie! I checked several times… I can make a picture for a proof.
    Now I’m worrying about my identity theft, and never ever will try again.

    • dd April 8, 2014 at 10:54AM

      I had the same problem it is case sensitive. I tried several times before i realized that.

    • Alf May 30, 2014 at 4:33PM

      use the audio option. only way I got past it.

  25. Mary March 26, 2014 at 1:11PM

    The “Annual Credit Report” website has taken over my computer. When I am at another website ….within 20 minutes, it will be replaced by the Annual Credit Report one. SO far I haven’t been able to remove it and I have a virus protection program for all the good it does

  26. Batya March 21, 2014 at 5:24PM

    Went on to the sight. Had no problem getting all 3 reports. Unfortunately, the only one I was not able to save was the Equifax. I was asked the same silly questions about a mortgage and such. I just figured it was there to throw people off – as it should be! I had no problems with any of the sights and everything worked fine. I know better than to click on anything that might appear to be a sponsored link because they always take you somewhere you do not want to be. Unfortunately, for people with older computers, there may be difficulty with navigating through the sights. They are deliberately designed to be difficult and misleading. It is the way of the world like it or not. Consumer beware.

    • John O March 22, 2014 at 8:08AM

      >> I was asked the same silly questions about a mortgage and such. I just figured it was there to throw people off – as it should be! <<

      Well, it didn't "throw me off". I correctly answered the questions about the two loans (namely None of the Above to the list of the 4 banks, one of which supposedly had the loan), as did many many people at consumeraffairs.com slash privacy slash equifax.html . What's wrong with correctly answering the two questions?

      And no, I didn't click on anything that looked like an ad or a sponsored link.

      Probably part of their strategy is to give some people unnecessary grief so they have to call and listen to a sales pitch or whatever their motive is, while letting others get their reports without a hassle — so the latter can post on message boards how they had no problem and thus diminishing the credibility of those who had problems.

      Oh, by the way, how did you answer those two questions. The same way as me, right (None of the Above)?

      Like I said, I had no problem last year with any of the three. Its the second time with Equifax (more than a year after the first one) that was the problem. Hope you have as much luck the next time (a year or more from now if you want a free report) you try to get a report from Equifax.

  27. John O March 19, 2014 at 10:12AM

    CORRECTED Version — Equifax, not Experian

    >> Worked like a champ. I was able to access and save-as-pdf all 3 reports in about 15 minutes. The key is to pay attention, follow directions, and don’t click any ads. <<

    JC – Good luck next year. I too had no problem the first time I did it — I got all 3 (spaced 4 months apart) without a problem last year. Then more than a year since I got the Equifax one, I tried this year and got the phony questions about a certain mortgage loan and a certain auto loan to supposedly verify my identity — the exact same loans a number of people have reported getting questioned about. And after answering correctly both questions with None of the Above, it gave me the baloney about having to mail a couple forms of ID in including my Social Security card.

    It has nothing to do with "paying attention" or not clicking on any ads. Again, good luck next time when you try to access your reports. Tell us then how it goes.

    • kimmie April 26, 2014 at 4:46PM

      same thing happpened to me with Equifax a couple days ago…..they were asking me about morgages i do not have…cars i do not have…etc…i picked none of the above…and then i was not allowed to see my credit report…must mail in their request form in with my SSN number on it…..etc…nervous about doing this because the whole reason i am checking my credit report is due to identity theft (somebody used my SSN number and filed a tax return!)

  28. John O March 19, 2014 at 10:07AM

    >> Worked like a champ. I was able to access and save-as-pdf all 3 reports in about 15 minutes. The key is to pay attention, follow directions, and don’t click any ads. <<

    JC – Good luck next year. I too had no problem the first time I did it — I got all 3 (spaced 4 months apart) without a problem last year. Then more than a year since I got the Experian one, I tried this year and got the phony questions about a certain mortgage loan and a certain auto loan to supposedly verify my identity — the exact same loans a number of people have reported getting. And after answering correctly both questions with None of the Above, it gave me the baloney about having to mail a couple forms of ID in including my Social Security card.

    It has nothing to do with "paying attention" or not clicking on any ads. Again, good luck next time when you try to access your reports.

    • M.G. May 20, 2014 at 8:07PM

      Exact same experience here. Problems with TransUnion, impossible to get from Equifax after answering 4 bogus questions that all had “none of the above” answers. I’m not mailing in anything.

      Unfortunately, the site seems to have become a lot less reliable over the past couple of years, I definitely do not remember it being in such bad shape. I wonder how much the credit unions’ increased maniacal peddling of their identity theft and other “all-in-one” solutions has to do with it, especially as the site is not run by the government.

      Equifax is by far the worst offender – extremely aggressive and all about the hard sell. I called to speak to someone and it was absolutely loathsome. I was very nervous about giving my information over the phone, and couldn’t wait to hang up.

  29. David March 16, 2014 at 10:09PM

    I filled out all the app and when all through it had me copy the little box of letters and numbers at the bottom, in which they kept telling me they didn’t match. after the 3rd time they say it has expired and you must fill out the whole thing over, all info and everything. this is a scam, I would recommend going elsewhere for your personal info. Annual credit report.com is NOT to be trusted, and a waste of time..

  30. JC March 16, 2014 at 9:44AM

    Worked like a champ. I was able to access and save-as-pdf all 3 reports in about 15 minutes. The key is to pay attention, follow directions, and don’t click any ads.

  31. John O February 26, 2014 at 1:19AM

    >> The truth is that they really do have to validate you’re the real deal before handing over your personal report. So these complaints are 100% baseless in my opinion. <<

    No CCG, it is a scam. I tried to get the Equifax one. It asked me about 2 loans I should know about and gave me a list of 4 banks for each and asked me which one each loan was with. I answered None of the Above for both, and it told me I need to mail in a request for my credit report with proof. Since then I have found many such complaints — the same bogus combination of a new mortgage loan taken out in I forget which year and some bogus auto loan taken out in some other year.

    http://www.consumeraffairs.com/privacy/equifax.html

    Its to scare you and get you to call. In the meantime, you get no credit report. Don't fall for their lies and don't fall for their bullshit. And quit calling yourself a guru for chrisake

    • David G March 18, 2014 at 1:27PM

      Same thing happened to me. I don’t have a mortgage, and I don’t have a car loan. Heck, I don’t even have a house or car. If this site is the bureaus’ way of conforming to federal law, it should conform to federal law and not require us to jump through hoops. In fact, this happened with two of the tree bureaus, so it’s not a glitch with a particular one. Absolutely freaked me out, had to take medication to calm down.

      If this happens on more than one bureau with more than one person with the exact same issue, then what else is the definition of “scam”?!?

      I also agree that your “review” is bogus, if for no other reason than it’s a small and inaccurate review on a 200ft page of ads and comments telling you how wrong you are.

  32. Mayleah February 7, 2014 at 9:14PM

    I tried to secure my credit report through AnnualCreditReport.com. After entering the required information and choosing to secure the report from Equifax, I was given a list of security questions which implied I have both mortgage and credit debts that I did not recognize. I gave the answer “none of the above” in all instances. Since my answers did not match their records, I received a notice to submit my request in writing , providing a copy of printed documentation like my social security card and driver’s license with the written request. I am not interested in sending this kind of documentation in the mail. I just called the toll-free number and requested a printed report from both Equifax and Experian. Hopefully, the reports will come with the stated 15 days. I must admit, though, that I am very concerned that Equifax has inaccurate information in my records based on the security questions. The thought that someone might be using my identity for financial/fraudulent purposes and/or that there are mistakes in my credit record is causing some concern, to say the least.

    • Adam February 10, 2014 at 1:00PM

      This exact same thing just happened to me.

      I only have 2 Credit Cards (which are in excellent standing), but both Experian and Equifax asked me to confirm issuing bank and monthly payment information for a mortgage and auto loan during the verification process. As I don’t have either, I was very concerned when both websites told me my free online report was not available and I would have to request it through snail mail. In a panic I just paid $40 to Experian to get all 3 reports, and surprise none of the 3 had any information about a mortgage or auto loan.

      While I’m glad my identity is secure, this seems less like a security measure and more like a scumbag way of getting you to pay for a report instead of getting a free report as we are all entitled to. I sent comments to annualcreditreport.com but based on other comments I don’t expect to hear anything back. I guess the only thing you can do is call these companies to request your free report rather than panic and pay for one online. I don’t think $100+ per year is worth it to get a monthly report.

      • Phil February 16, 2014 at 5:58PM

        Just had this same issue requesting reports from Equifax first for both myself and then separately for my husband. I did not want to send them hard photocopies of our ID and ran a google search and discovered that others had the exact same issue with Equifax, but then they tried online with the other two (Transunion and Experian) and did not get the nonsesense and alarming personal questions about mortgages and car notes they didn’t have, but got the standard annoying background questions about the dog’s name or whatever. NO record on the Transunion report about any of those bogus mortgages or car loans on the complete report from them. This really can’t be a coincidence that so many people get implied fraud concerns Equifax when they are posed false “security questions” and it leads one to believe either that they’re intentionally doing this to discourage users from the access they’re required by law to provide, or they use it to frighten users into buying their full reports, or both. Should be an FTC, FCC and FBI issue as requiring ID by mail raises legitimate privacy concerns and of course there’s no way to know what they do with your photocopied ID after you freely give it to them. If it looks like a scam and acts like a scam…..

    • the jury February 16, 2014 at 2:20AM

      holy crap same thing happened to me!
      after saying no to all these erroneous errors it would not let me review my report and asked for mailings of personnel info which
      i declined. i am calling the company

      • the jury February 16, 2014 at 2:27AM

        what the hell you mean no phone number??

        total scam!!!!!!!!!
        take your report and shove it

  33. Lorie February 7, 2014 at 4:53PM

    I visited the annualcreditreport.com site through a link provided by the FTC. I ordered all three credit reports but only transunion page showed up so I clicked the save as a PDF button. But this took me away from the site,no credit report….so I didn’t get to see my report! It landed on a transunion page that said website was unavailable so check back later. I could never get back to that page and I never could access the other two credit reports because their was not even a option to see them!
    I tried to submit a compliant on the contact us form,however that proved very hard to get through. Inconveniently I had attempted that twice because it kept saying it had errors. Finally I were able to make a submission and it has been two days and no response.

  34. Charlie February 7, 2014 at 4:23PM

    AnnualCreditReport.com is as corrupt as the three credit bureaus. Each year, Experian tells me I have already received my report for the year, which is false. Each year, Equifax tells me “for my security,” they cannot provide me an on-line report. They instruct me to fill out their form and mail it to them with various documents to prove my identity.

    And today…when I decided to use the “Contact Us” link at AnnualCreditReport.com to voice my complaints…they HAVE NO SUBMIT LINK to actually send a message to them!! You can fill out their form…but there is no way to send it to them.

    In my opinion, the three bureaus and AnnualCreditReport.com are all corrupt scum.

  35. Mary January 29, 2014 at 2:18PM

    I requested one report from one reporting agency and somehow ended up submitting to all three agencies. (I have never had a problem in the past with this.) Then, I didn’t receive any of them on-line or by mail. I have left complains on the annualcreditreport.com website “contact” me and no one has replied. I have tried to contact the agencies directly. Transunion loops me at sign in and I can’t sign in. Experian shuts me out. I am very frustrating with the whole mess. This is the first year that I have had any trouble with this.

  36. James January 29, 2014 at 8:49AM

    Equifax IS breaking the federal law.

    Equifax asked me 4 *security* questions, to verify my identity. However, all 4 questions concerned accounts I never had. Equifax then said it can not provide the online credit report. I think they are doing this to prevent consumers from accessing their credit reports and to steer frustrated users into spending money on Equifax’s web site to get reports they are supposed to get for free. It’s more convenient than getting photocopies of your water bill and SS card, and sending a letter and waiting a month.

    ****Twice they asked me four nonsense questions about accounts I never had, and twice they denied me access to my account.****

    This is a manipulation of the federal law and attempt by Equifax at behavior modification, to get customers to spend money on their website.

    To add to the user frustration, there is no way to file a complaint on this site, despite a “contact us” button. This is deceptive. When you try to send the message, the page comes back, every time, with “Errors: Tell us more is invalid. Please try again.” This “help” page is purposely arranged as a dead end, there is no way to contact this company except by letter, if you can find the address.

    AnnualCreditReport.com is a joint venture, partially owned by, guess who? Equifax.

    Who put the foxes in charge of the henhouse?

    Equifax’s illegal evasion of the federal laws, which compel them to provide a free credit report, should be investigated and prosecuted

    The company which writes the software for the website should not be owned by the three credit agencies. This is not only a conflict of interest, it is a corruption of business ethics.

    • Michael February 3, 2014 at 9:22AM

      more than twice i ran into the exact same thing… i’m writing up a complaint right now to submit in the federal court here in NY…

  37. ashad hossain January 23, 2014 at 9:16PM

    The FTC and FDIC condone on their websites for AnnualCreditReport. Also, I received 2 out of the 3 bureaus reports. However, I did not receive a score from the website.

  38. Tommy January 23, 2014 at 9:08PM

    I was able to get all 3 of my credit reports from annualcreditreport.com when I try to dispute hey item on Equifax it asked for my confirmation number and when I put it in they said it was not valid they are supposed to be valid for 90 days and it is only a day old I tried to do this on Equifax website and their dispute line and it will not accept the confirmation number is this,or was it a scam. Im frustrated there is the same negative item on there 3 times.

  39. ashad hossain January 22, 2014 at 9:24PM

    The truth is that they really do have to validate you’re the real deal before handing over your personal report. So these complaints are 100% baseless in my opinion

    • Ramona February 13, 2014 at 3:47PM

      You work for any of the three companies.

    • RG April 14, 2014 at 8:24PM

      They are NOT baseless. The same thing has happened to me TWICE in a year with transunion. They claim I have a mortgage loan that I DON’T HAVE and then advise me that I have to send copies of valid IDs in the mail to them to get the report. If they have to confirm you identity they should do so with CORRECT information. It IS a scam to try and deter you from getting your report free online. They know that not many people want to provide their proof of identity in the mail. It’s way too easy for people to get hold of your information that way. Anyone could steal a copy of your id out of the mail.

  40. Steevee January 22, 2014 at 1:49PM

    Beware! annualcreditreport.com is an arm of the three credit bureaus and designed to force you into signing up for their services which you have to cancel or else be charged each and every month.

    My proof is that I just went through the process at annualcreditreport.com entered all my information and selected my reports THEN lo and behold a so called “error has occurred” and “please try again” I never got my reports and I tried again and guess what? The selection buttons were disabled, apparently being unable to receive them as if I had been successful on the previous try and have to wait another year even though I never got any reports.

    Now I’m forced to go directly to the bureaus, which I have to do or else take it on faith for another year that all’s correct, sign up for their service which then has to be canceled or be charged every month!

  41. Joe January 21, 2014 at 9:45AM

    annualcreditreport.com is just as crooked and unreliable as the credit reporting companies that set it up, big surprise, huh?

  42. ashad hossain January 17, 2014 at 11:26PM

    Central Source LLC needs to take a good hard look at the complaints I am hearing from consumers, because many feel it is a bit scammy, in some regards.

    • yzrgal January 20, 2014 at 5:32PM

      I love to tell you you are absolutely 100 % right. The I.D. Theft/fraud ( what ever they want to call it is a “HUGE SCAM “). Back in 1999 I had a credit report sent to me. Well looking through all of the lies here is the other person’s Oregon Drivers License number!: and her fraudulant activities right along withe the credit bureau’s because they said they fixed this and have been lying to me the whole time. They ASSIGNED THIS OTHER PERSON MY SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER ALONG WITH MY GOOD CREDIT AND FLAT OUT STOLE MY IDENTITY TO GIVE TO ANOTHER PERSON, TOTALLY LIED TO ME EVEN AFTER I SENT THEM A OREGON DRIVERS LICENSE WITH C.D.L: 4, SIGNATURES stamped by the notery, Pharm. license, driver’s certificate, where I worked 2 jobs, so some on this mess looks like it’s cleared up and they turn around and put even more things that have nothing to do with me on this credit report! It is now January of 2014, 18th and they still refuse to fix this. I now have 4 Social Security Numbers on this last credit report with a bunch of ch, 7 items from 3 of 2005 and all the credit cards were insured and court ordered for insurance to pay in full and close!!! well, nothing but harassing calls and lies from ‘OUR SO CALLED TRUSTED INVESTIGATIONS THEY – DO NOT EVEN DO… IF THEY DID INVESTIGATE , THIS WOULD HAVE NEVER HAPPENED BUT, THEY ARE LIARS, I.D.THIEFS, FRAUDSTERS, AND NOT A BIT , AWHOLE- LOT- OF-SCAMMING. THEY ARE RUNNING THE USA DOWN TO WHERE THEY WANT US. THEY OPERATE MOSTLY FROM OTHER COUNTRIES !!!!

  43. yn January 16, 2014 at 4:24PM

    Also BEWARE….I spent a l o n g time on annual credit . Com site.THE column your suppose to click for your year of birth does not work.It will not scroll lower than 1996.Slide bar won’t work either.I think they’re bombarded with free requests and want to make money.Very pathetic.I have used site previous years with NO PROBLEMS…Or maybe it’s due to Tax time of year….

  44. yn January 16, 2014 at 4:16PM

    I hate to be the messenger of Bad news….BUT DISCOVER CARD AND THE OTHER COMPANY MENTIONED DO NOT…I REPEAT DO NOT USE TRUE FICO SCORES….DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE ITS A GIMMICK!!! Call the customer service number and ask where they get their score from its from a credit bureau..Equifax or experian…I Can’t remember which one.

  45. pettstop January 8, 2014 at 10:03AM

    Well I have used annualcreditreport.com since 2004-2005 and have honestly had no problem with them. I have never been charged and everything comes up as expected.It maybe because I signed up during the time they started doing it but it has worked fine. I was even able to dispute items and had them removed from my report and it showed the following year when I was able to check again. I havent used it in the past 18 months so hopefully everything is still the same. Hope things work out for you guys….

  46. Peter January 3, 2014 at 10:20AM

    Site wanted to upgrade me to Adobe Reader XI which I ready had. Would not proceed past Step 2 of 3. Finally going back, I was thanked for using them and never received a report. Then when I tried to submit a complaint I was informed that there was a problem in my input, but after repeated attempts, shorting my response was the key. The 1500 character input is bogus more like 30. Also, agree need a phone number to call.

    • Carol Anne January 4, 2014 at 8:24AM

      I concur. I’ve written them about it, and received a form letter that was totally unrelated to my report. I think they ARE in the process of winding down the “free” site, because they want that fee for sending you the information about YOURSELF!

  47. nashwa traveli December 29, 2013 at 6:02AM

    I’ve read most of your comments and feel there are real issues with the annual credit report site. I recommend you send a copy of your complaint to your state attorney general’s office. I’m going online today to review my free credit reports. If I discover anything worth sharing, I will.

  48. CB December 27, 2013 at 3:49PM

    When I tried to get a TransUnion credit report from the website, I could not get past the paying part, and then when I clicked on Equifax for a report, they stated that a report had already been received(Prior to this, I had received a Experian rpt only,with their name printed on the top of each page.)

    • Dottie January 19, 2014 at 12:35PM

      Hi there – I had the exact same problem. SO very frustrating!! Were you ever able to resolve this or get any suggestions?
      Good luck to us!

  49. dc December 17, 2013 at 4:36PM

    I, too, could not access Trans Union site. It was “out of service”. So I mailed in the form to Atlanta GA over two months ago. Nothing. I alternate the three services and check my credit report every four months so it was Trans Union’s turn. I’ve had problems with them in the past. No problems with Experian or Expedia. But Trans Union problems guaranteed. Don’t know where or who to turn because if I go to their site and if by a miracle it worked (usually doesn’t) it will tell me that I’m not eligible because not enough time has passed.

  50. ashad hosain November 28, 2013 at 8:26PM

    it is operated by Central Source LLC, which is a joint venture created by the three credit reporting agencies.

  51. Lois November 25, 2013 at 8:30PM

    Annualcreditreport.com IS a SCAM, in cooperation with the United States Post Office. Stay away from it! After my unsuccessful online attempt to obtain a credit report, the site advised I had to mail the completed form in with a copy of my drivers’ license and social security card. I sent the info by certified mail, and surprise, surprise! The Post Office “lost” my certified mail. Now I cannot get any live person to talk to at annualcreditreport.com,they don’t respond to email, and the Post Office tells me, “It’s the Holidays! Don’t expect anyone to call you back!” (I called them on November 22.) I was stupid, and now I can only wait for the fraud to happen. Don’t mail those people anything, and for that matter, DON’T MAIL ANYTHING THROUGH THE ATLANTA GEORGIA POST OFFICE!

  52. Rhio2k November 25, 2013 at 6:22PM

    I can’t even log in: “Words did not match”, even though I clearly matched the captcha. Is the site having some technical difficulties at the moment?

  53. Carol November 13, 2013 at 4:43PM

    The site was easy to navigate, however I wonder how the Federal Trade Commission or the Federal Communication Commission feels about the fraud of advertising “Free credit report”, but oh by the way let me have your credit card number because it is not free! This will be a good test to see what they do with my information since I opted out.

  54. amanda November 12, 2013 at 8:34PM

    Last week I applied online for my credit report because its been over a year since Ive ordered them…The security questions didnt apply to me asking me the name of the lenders for a mortgage and auto loan and the amounts i was paying per month on them..I didnt get a mortgage or auto loan…so i put none of the above…it told me they couldnt do my credit report online i had to request through regular mail…which made me think OMG someone has taken out a mortgage and car loan with my SSN! I was sure that I had become a victim of IDENTITY THEFT otherwise it wouldnt have denied me my report because i answered the questions correctly! I called and was able to order them by phone an hour later…and the automated recording said the reports would be delivered to me in 15 days..WIERD..because there was no security questions through the phone. Then today I got impatient and thought I would try online again…and Transunion’s sec questions applied to me..and they let me review my report…then i tried the other two and the same thing..they both asked me about a mortgage loan which i again checked none of the above..and they told me to mail in my request providing proof…Well at least after seeing other people having questions about mortgage loans that didnt apply to them…and being denied their report online too…i dont feel so freaked out that someone took a loan with my SSN. And now i will try to order online again but through the credit bureau’s individual websites and not annualcreditreport.com .

  55. Lynda November 10, 2013 at 1:57PM

    It took 15 minutes for me to check first mine with Transunion then my husband’s with Experian, including printing.
    It couldn’t have been easier or simpler to understand.
    The only hitch was the security code is case sensitive so it took 2 tries on mine, making it take a few seconds longer.

  56. Silas November 8, 2013 at 11:48AM

    I Used freecreditreport.com. Those freaking guys are such scam artists I am very glad I called customer service!!!!! I called because I knew if I didn’t call to cancel my membership within 7 days I would be charged for 20 dollars. So I call in and cancel it, and then the guy tells me that I am charged for 32 dollars because I did my credit report!!!!! I never got any confirmation for ANYTHING asking me to charge my account for 32 dollars. Sneaky bastards. Luckily this guy was nice and was able to refund me the money, but wow I cannot believe the scams these people run nowadays BEWARE FREECREDITREPORT.COM READ EVERY LITTLE DETAIL BEFORE YOU CLICK ON ANYTHING .

  57. Sharleen November 7, 2013 at 8:46AM

    Tried to get all three credit reports today. Had no problem with the first listed which was Experian. When I tried to go to the other two sites- Transunion & Equifax I was shown to a page saying get your FREE CREDIT SCORE, not credit report. There were no options or buttons to click to bypass this and get my credit report. I could only sign up for a free 10 credit score monitoring service. I tried going to the website individually to get the free credit report only to be sent back to annualcreditreport.com and tried to get again the 2 I was not able to get the first time, but was told I already got them. VERY VERY FRUSTRATING. I CANNOT SEE HOW THIS IS A LEGITIMATE HELPFUL WEBSITE WHEN IT DOESN’T WORK AS IT SAYS IT WILL. I DO NOT WANT CREDIT SCORE OR MONITORING SERVICE, ONLY MY REPORT. NOW I HAVE TO CALL THE 800 NUMBER AND WAIT FOR THEM TO MAIL IT.

  58. Ivette B October 29, 2013 at 6:13PM

    I would like to report that I had no problems using the annualcreditreport.com website. The security questions is to establish identity. If you carefully follow their instructions you can be taken -each one at a time – to the Credit source agencies and look at your credit report from the annualcreditreport.com website without logging off. Or if you need to return later you can go directly to the Experian website for example; enter the report number given and continue browsing your information. You are even able to dispute online any information that may be questionable. I have only done one for Experian but the experience was very smooth. I had no problems with either website. Just an advise, try not to click too quickly and read all carefully. Good luck.

  59. Mark October 23, 2013 at 12:24PM

    This site might not be a scam but they sure found a way to go around their obligation. I tried to get a report online from them 4 times now and each time the security questions clearly didn’t match any of my info to which I replied “none of the above”, next page pops up telling me online delivery is not available because of the data I entered. Are you kidding, I’ve checked my info against what they had on file from last year and entered it identically, I haven’t moved, I haven’t applied for any mortgage or loan, so nothing changed since last year.

    • Nick October 30, 2013 at 11:23PM

      Hey,
      I see that you had THE EXACT SAME PROBLEM VERIFYING YOUR IDENTITY to get your credit report on annualcreditrepot.com as I have. It is very frustrating. I am wondering if you or anyone else on the forum has figured out a way around this? To get a credit report successfully online w/out having to mail them verification? Or at least to make them give verification questions that ACTUALLY PERTAIN TO ME so I can answer them correctly?

      • Michael November 5, 2013 at 8:01PM

        The site is like when we tried to sign up for the new health care. The site does not work. At least it didn’t for me.Tried to just get Experian report. Says, We were unable to honor your request. Then gives instructions for snail mail or phone request.Says their online security measures prevent them from being able to extend online services to me. Care to guess what happens to the security measures problem if I go directly to Experions site and PAY ??

    • Chris November 2, 2013 at 4:30PM

      I am wondering the same. The website appears to not work correctly, In my case the Dispute link is dead. Than I go to Transunion to login there I am told the security question incorrect. Oh, and wait…I go to report it in the contacts. I cannot write the letter… I get an error message “tell us more is invalid”. I checked and have room for 750 more text letters. In the past when I had trouble getting reports for free, I paid and got them no problem.

      • Carol Anne January 4, 2014 at 8:28AM

        The site not working is NOT A BUG. It is a FEATURE to the credit reporting agency. They had to be forced to provided free annual reports, and they resent it, so they’ve made sure the site has plenty of errors and bugs. It’s the only logical explanation to me.

  60. William Villagran October 17, 2013 at 9:25AM

    I have use annualcreditreport.com and it was worked fine for me in the past the only problem is that it can only be use 3 times a year for free. So what I did instead is got one of those programs that monitors your families identity that way I can check it anytime. It has worked great for me and my family. It is the best for the kids as well because since identity thief’s are starting to target them more now than ever I can protect them before something really bad happens. Child Identity theft has increased so much now it is insane.

  61. Megen October 15, 2013 at 1:28AM

    I have used the site before to get my credit reports with no problems. This time it asked me verification questions that had nothing to do with me, denied my request & said I had to phone in or mail in for a copy along with a copy of my ssc & utility bill. Something is smells fishy.

  62. Nate Smith October 11, 2013 at 3:58PM

    Another well known complaint about annualcreditreport.com is every single time that I have ever went to their site to receive my annual credit report,which has been a few times now, magically a debt collector has has called about an old debt. I am certain that they are working in cahoots because this has always been the regular pattern of actions after leaving annualcreditreport.com. I strongly advise readers to do business with each credit reporting agency individually and directly. I know this is what’s happening because almost each time I’ve had a new cell phone number and it is not ironic that old debt collectors can know the information I have only given to annualcreditreport.com unless they are working together. Good luck folks!

  63. Jim A. September 14, 2013 at 11:46AM

    Two things. For many years now I have used mail box services (UPS etc.) as my mailing address and not the address of my residences. And, since the annualcreditreport.com web pages do not specify which addresses you should submit or show which ones they have on file, I have no idea which to provide….so I provided all of them. Apparently this for some unfathomable reason confuses them…and all three credit reporting agencies sent me their respective version of a letter denying my request….wanting me to provide physical copies of additional information ranging from cancelled checks to drivers license.

    However, shortly after submitting my initial request (which was declined) out of the blue I started getting all kinds of phone calls from collection agencies that have been virtually silent for over a year now.

    This makes me very reluctant to send them any more personal information given the clear conflict of interest they have in providing what is apparently a government authorized service they alone purportedly are entitled to provide to consumers, and their real clients whom clearly they serve first and foremost…collection agencies acting on behalf of lenders and creditors.

    Does such a clear conflict of interest establish that annualcreditreport.com is a scam? Depends if you are a consumer or collection agency I guess. You be the judge.

  64. Chris September 12, 2013 at 1:04PM

    I respectfully disagree. AnnualCreditReport.com IS a scam. When trying to get my credit report, they purposely ask me questions about accounts that I have never had… and THEN later when they mail me the report, NONE of those accounts are listed. Yet, they refuse you an online report and I need to see my report immediately. You call, and they want to sell you something. We need a lawsuit against them. This has happened to me 4 times in the last 2 years that I have tried to get my Equifax report online. They obfuscate and it is very clear they do not want you to get it that way.

    Congress really needs to do something about them. Further, scores and reports to consumers should always be free. We need to stop the BIG BROTHER MONOPOLY SCAM NOW!

    • Yeeea Right!!! March 12, 2014 at 5:58PM

      Another ME TOO

      TransUnion & Experian are f’d. Time for these despicable dishonest turds to go. They denied my access to an immediate look at my report. Equifax ran into a convenient error. TransUnion tried to scare me with multiple choices that made no sense, and then told me I answered them wrong.

      Equifax was the only report I was able to get immediately and my account has no crazy activity on it like TransUnion wanted to use as a wringer over me.

      Let me point out this article says it’s basically not possible to get your score. Ever. The agencies aren’t gonna do it & they’re clearly paid off by the Barclay crowd.

      These agencies are worse than the Fed.

      • Yeeea Right!!! March 12, 2014 at 5:59PM

        ***I meant Experian ran into a convenient error.

  65. DAN CLARK September 8, 2013 at 7:12AM

    I should also note that Equifax asked personal ‘security’ questions which felt like they were deliberately designed to suggest your identity has been stolen and accounts opened in your name. What a bunch of greaseballs.

    • Chris September 12, 2013 at 12:58PM

      Yep. They do it to me too.

  66. DAN CLARK September 8, 2013 at 7:09AM

    I got reports from Experion and Transunion but no scores. All I got from Equifax was a demand to send them all sorts of highly personal documents by mail for “my own protection”. Looks like our representatives have colluded once again with business interests to screw the little fellow. Thanks, guys.

  67. A. Noni Mous August 7, 2013 at 1:13AM

    I think it’s a scam. One, you have to enter your social security number and then enter the last four digits with the three different companies. Then, when it says you can have your ‘free’ credit scores, a page comes up saying you have to ‘order’ them and get them in the mail for 12.95 for Experion, and 7.95 from Equifax. It says you can still get it for free. But I bet you anything that when you send that sheet of paper in, you will have to pay in order to get an ACTUAL credit report. FreeCreditReport.com actually ruined my reputation at a bank because they ran my debit card through three times and got it rejected 3 times. So it cost me over 50 dollars and more in NSF fees. Now I’m trying to clean up my credit just so I can rent an apartment. Get your report from someone reliable, not these scam artists. I don’t know who that would be, I suppose your bank or maybe an accountant. But if someone is asking you for 14.95 (Like the site that helped to further ruin my credit) Or for a credit card number just to LOOK at your report to ‘verify’ that you’re over 18 or that you are who you are, don’t do it. Because you will be ripped off.

    I believe that AnnualCreditReport.com is a scam because, A – after putting in all your info, you get a page stating that your request can’t be ‘processed’ or that access can’t be gained. That’s a load.

    And B – After they claim access can’t be gained, they ask you for money.

    If this was REALLY a free service and not a scam, they wouldn’t ask for money and at least ONE of the companies would provide you with your report.

  68. coco July 26, 2013 at 2:19PM

    something is definitely going on with the annualcreditreport site. I used to easily access my reports and would do it so I could check one from each bureau every 4 months. Now this year I haven’t been able to access ANY of them for free. After logging on I get the message about ‘not being able to process my request’. However I am able to receive my reports JUST FINE on their website after I pay. Its a scam for sure because they are losing money off of this. I’m going to file a complaint.

    • dc December 17, 2013 at 4:42PM

      Who did you file a complaint with as I’m having problems with Trans Union? Thanks.

  69. KSW July 20, 2013 at 12:17PM

    My problem is different from everyone else here…I have not applied for a mortgage or credit card and two out the three credit bureaus are contacting ME…to send them i.d., such
    as birth certificates. drivers license, ss #…when I did not ask for reports…what sort of new scam is this? Who could be checking up on me this way?

    I agree with one of the posters….let’s have an #800 number to call to ask questions and get info!

    • Carol Anne January 4, 2014 at 8:45AM

      You’ll have more effect by going to the Federal Trade Commission (ftc.gov) and filing a Consumer Complaint asking FTC to investigate the issue. They are the agency with the responsibility for seeing free Annual Credit Reports are made available to citizens.

  70. chris July 15, 2013 at 7:38AM

    What is the problem with these agencies? For several years I have gotten my reports online, accessing each agency 4 months apart. Recently, I have been unable to access any of them without getting the message “unable to process your request”, plus ads to purchase more monitoring. The mail-in option is worse–they want all kinds of documentation with all kinds of personal information. NO WAY am I sending this through the mail to God knows where. I also tried by phone and just went round and round, then they clicked off without completing the request. I’m going to see if my bank can do it, then I go to the FTC. What started out as a good service has morphed into a great big identity information seeking scam!

  71. Chad July 11, 2013 at 8:32PM

    It was the worst. I checked my score a few years ago with one of the ones that advertise on TV and it was easier. You have to cancel it over the phone before they charge you but it only took a minute. This site is a joke. You get screwed around and bombarded with ads, no actual score unless you pay, at least I couldn’t get one without paying. Sweet job congress thanks I loved the last 20 minutes of my life.

  72. jj July 3, 2013 at 9:07PM

    Interesting. I went to get my report and they could not verify my ID. Next I went to the site and paid for it intentionally answering an ID proof questions incorrectly (but paying this time). MY REPORT CAME UP!!

    So, when I pay, the score comes up. When I don’t, they can’t verify my identity.

    COMPLETE SCAM!!!!!!

    • Jessie July 10, 2013 at 12:43AM

      The site asks for verification by asking what loans you have and amount owed. Well, I feel safe knowing someone is getting loans out of my identity and here I am unable to access my own credit report from the safest site around. Like if a person’s identity isn’t given everyday almost everywhere.

  73. John from Atlanta June 18, 2013 at 4:03PM

    So after reading all these comments and spending time getting my credit report, I felt it necessary to report on my own findings. First, I found that AnnualCreditReport is condoned by the FDIC and the FTC directly through their website (if you don’t believe me check for yourself). I then gave all my information to AnnualCreditReport directly through their website and was able to get my report for TransUnion and Experian. When trying to get my report through Equifax it came up as “could not give you a report online. You must send in documents (including W2′s and a Birth Certificate) to some address”. Furthermore, I went to the TransUnion website and got my free credit score. It appeared to match the report I got from AnnualCreditReport. Also, when using AnnualCreditReport, I was directed to the Experian and Transunion Websites directly when receiving the free report. I had to answer some questions to prove it was me and then they said it would be my only free report for 12 months. In conclusion, it appears after everything I have been through that it is indeed legitimate. The FTC and FDIC condone on their websites for AnnualCreditReport. Also, I received 2 out of the 3 bureaus reports. However, I did not receive a score from the website. It appears you must sign up and pay for the score directly on the bureaus’ websites.

    • Susan from New Orleans July 5, 2013 at 2:23PM

      I had a similar experience. I received my TransUnion and Experian reports online. However, for some reason, not Equifax. I have to send them my social security card & number (I am NOT willing to do this) and/or a utility bill, copy of your driver’s license, I am not comfortable sending my Social Security number to anyone.

      Sending a copy of my birth certificate is also not something I want to do. Seems to me that Equifax should have an easier way to get reports to folks. I know that it is for my protection, but really! My Social Security card? My birth certificate? That’s just too much information for me to want to send to get my Equipfax Report.

      What do ya’ll say?

  74. Michael June 9, 2013 at 9:31AM

    It didn’t work for me either… the author evidentally is VERY lucky or was paid for his review by someone connected to annualcreditreport.com I guess! Not cool!

    To everyone else though, why not shoot off a letter to your Congress person and ask if THEY have tried to get THEIR AnnualCreditReport lately and if not would they PLEASE try the site and see if it really works as per the law or not… just saying, if most of the members of Congress were to try AnnualCreditReport.com there might be some changes made very quickly! Regards!

  75. Jeff June 8, 2013 at 9:02AM

    It says “free credit report” not score. I got my report. Go to Credit Karma if you want a score of some sort. The site mentioned here does what it said it would do. I got in, got a report, saved it as a PDF and it took just a few minutes.

  76. Joey May 29, 2013 at 8:08AM

    Thank You Michael, for the phone # that was shown for AnnualCreditReport.com, so far so good, however, even if you get a hold to these people, getting them all (3) to change faulty information, so you can get that car for $99 a month with your newly found ‘good’ credit is gonna be some prayerful work. Most of us have seen the TV shows where the Detective or Reporter pays someone for information to get to the bottom of a case or story, I’m getting tired, (a little tired), of my hoop-tee, so in order to get a car or house, I have considered paying a fee for a while to get my record corrected and score rightfully increased.

  77. joe readl May 26, 2013 at 11:03AM

    DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME!! If you want to know your credit score you have to pay. Annualcreditreport should be shut down.

  78. james May 20, 2013 at 10:16AM

    Wish I would have read the complaints before. I would have not wasted my time trying to get a report by phone and internet.

  79. Andy. May 11, 2013 at 10:26AM

    I tried to get my scores and all I got was the run around. This is just a phoney attempt for the three credit providers to say they are following the law and supplying free credit reports. File a complaint with the FTC. Make them clean up their act or go out of business.

  80. Dusty May 6, 2013 at 7:48AM

    Worked just fine for me, took only a few minutes and I was able to see my equifax details. No score, just total amounts outstanding and current payments. At least I know now that there isn’t a card out there in my name I don’t know about.

  81. Mary May 4, 2013 at 12:35AM

    I tried Annualcreditreport.com, but they all told me my report is not available. Now I worry if they will send me commercial advertising letter since they have my address information. Dose anyone have this problem? Hope I just worry too much.

  82. Cody April 17, 2013 at 4:12PM

    Annualcreditreport.com is a total scam, it is a commercial site that tries to get you to spend money any way they can. If you think you are actually going to get your score (the number) you will not without spending money. It is a difficult site to navigate successfully, and you will be disappointed..

    Government recommendation = Bull

  83. frank April 16, 2013 at 1:05AM

    the comments people are saying is true it is a little confusing and im a computer tech…it only lets you see 1 of the 3 reports not all 3 even if you select all 3 and it does NOT SHOW YOUR FICO SCORE it CHARGES extra for that i believe it was 8 dollars but if you opt out and try to get it later they double it to like 16 or so the site is misleading a lot of the people actually just want to know the FICO score but its not included in your “credit report” so i guess its good to make sure there is no fraud under your name.

  84. Sandra April 15, 2013 at 8:15AM

    I attempted to retrieve my “free” annual credit report. I was unable to go forward with my request as it stated I had already received my free credit report. This is a great cause for alarm as I have never used this or any site to pull my credit report. It is unclear to me if someone has accessed my information or this is a scam. I tried calling their number, it is a recording with no option to talk with an actual person. Unnerving. I will now call each of the credit bureaus and put an alert on my social.

  85. MGM April 13, 2013 at 10:09AM

    AnnualCreditReport.com is FALSE, DECEPTIVE, & DISHONEST. TransUnion tries to make you sign up for a monthly service to see your FREE Credit REPORT, then pay $29.95 to get EQUIFAX & EXPERIAN to get a complete picture of you FREE Credit REPORT.

  86. jasmine rogers April 11, 2013 at 12:26AM

    Michael you are full of it! Many people are having problems with this free credit report. I’m not impressed by your beautiful website. The fact still remains that the free credit report is not working many people.

  87. Theresa March 23, 2013 at 4:10PM

    I went to the site to print my Equifax report. I filled out the questionnaire (including my full social!!!!) and answered their DELIBERATELY MISLEADING security questions only to be told that i’m going to have to mail in several HIGHLY SENSITIVE documents in order to get it. Um, no. Everyone needs to watch the expose 60 Minutes did on the credit reporting agencies. . .they are quite literally out of control. . .

  88. jay March 16, 2013 at 2:49AM

    I tried getting my credit report and they took me to Experian then was informed that I already got my report… no such thing. I think all these credit places that offer free stuff are just BS. I wont recommend anyone to this nonsense.

  89. C February 21, 2013 at 8:27PM

    Well so much for free… All I wanted was a print out. I hit print, it kicked me out and directed me to the Equifax site. I tried to go back… Woops to late. I’ve already submited my 1 report for the year. But for a small fee I can see it when ever I want…. what a scam… Thanks Congress.

  90. ErnieC February 17, 2013 at 6:00PM

    So much for a report. I tried two of them Equifax and Transunion. Both told me I had already had a report in the past year. Not so, this is the first time I have ever tried.
    So much for a free service!!!!!

  91. Nancy February 16, 2013 at 2:42PM

    I agree with almost all of the earlier comments about the poor quality and general sleeziness of this site (annualcreditreport.com). In addition, if you look about halfway down the list of FAQs, you will see that you are agreeing to get unsolicited you-are-already-preapproved-for-this-credit-card offers and insurance offers as well. You might be able to opt out, but they don’t give you a phone number for that. They only give you a number for more information. Enough with the junk mail already. Spam in my mailbox.

  92. J. Burton February 14, 2013 at 12:11PM

    AnnualCredit Report.com is a farce! I felt they asked too much information, including my SS, which I reluctantly gave. I waded thru all the info required, only to find that this was NOT a FREE site. I did NOt want to join anything, so I tried to backtrack and erase my information. It could not be done! SO, they have all my information, and I don’t want to do business with them! How can I protect myself?

  93. Scott February 11, 2013 at 7:25AM

    Leave it up to slimy Congress that can’t put their foot down and make it easy fix for these 3 agencies

  94. David February 11, 2013 at 5:33AM

    From Rip off report.com and this is the truth – they ARE a scam and full of SHet.
    annualcreditreport.com Experian free credit report scam, unauthorized monthly subscription charges Internet Author: Credit Reporting Agencies: annualcreditreport.com

    2
    5/28/2011
    9:17 AM
    freecreditreport.com i was rerouted from annualcreditreport.com which is free to these guys who inadvertinly signed me up for a monthly membership under the guise of a one dollar fee. Internet Author: oceanside California Credit Reporting Agencies: freecreditreport.com

    3
    12/26/2010
    5:56 PM
    freecreditreport.com freecreditreport.com is a scam – watch out for unauthorized charges Internet, Nationwide *Consumer Suggestion…Scores are NOT free at annualcreditreport.com Author: Henderson Nevada Credit Reporting Agencies: freecreditreport.com

    4
    1/8/2011
    7:31 PM
    annualcreditreport Annual Credit Report Request Service Promise all three reports, give one Atlanta, Georgia *Consumer Comment…Not a rip off Author: Wilmington Delaware Consumer Services: annualcreditreport

    5
    2/27/2010
    8:46 AM
    Central Source – annualcreditreport annualcreditreport charged$14.95to my creditcard,ididnotgive thema#orauthorizeit Internet, Florida Author: lakin Kansas Finance: Central Source

  95. sandra trsiner February 8, 2013 at 8:46AM

    Need an 800# to CALL!!!!!

  96. Corneeeeelius February 5, 2013 at 6:21PM

    I just got all three reports for my fiance with no issue. Thank the Lord for this site because it really helped.
    Seriously, if you can’t get your reports from annualcreditreport.com after reading this site, you should probably go ask someone you trust to help you. Maybe an adult, or someone who graduated highschool, preferably someone who can read and write in english.

    Just sayin. . .

    • KML February 18, 2013 at 12:19PM

      I’m no dummy. Two of the three sites I went to vectored me into their pay-for-service subscriptions. From there, click on ‘free report’ and get put back to annualcreditreport.com opening screen.
      Happily, I did graduate highschool, and college and university twice. But these sites are much less than they make out to be. …and not what Congress intended.

    • Cody April 17, 2013 at 4:15PM

      How long have you been working for freecreditreport.com?????

    • shay May 31, 2013 at 11:15AM

      9 times out of 10, the person who calls others idiots is usually the real idiot.
      Go ahead and thank the lord for this site, but I doubt he guided you here to insult others.

      Just sayin…

    • mellayella May 31, 2013 at 11:29AM

      @ Corneeeelius – No doubt you were casing her credit score before committing to marriage, hopefully (for her sake) it was not good enough for you.

  97. Sheila Dillon January 15, 2013 at 9:51AM

    I used the annualcreditreport.com site. After jumping thru all the hoops I was told I couldn’t get the reports online, instead, I had to call the toll free #. When I called the # given to me by the site, I was told I could not get a report mailed out to me because it had not been a year. Of course it hadn’t been a year – I had been denied credit & should have been able to get my free report from the reporting agency the gave me the negative report.

  98. Jewels January 5, 2013 at 9:25AM

    I just spent a waste of over an hour trying to get my “3″ free reports, believe that that now not the case. I believe that you will get one report, and then for some reason or another you won’t be able to retreive the others so you will have to pay for them by requesting so in the mail!!

    Why are we playing by the roles and laws if the government doesn’t

  99. Catherine December 29, 2012 at 6:18PM

    To ensure you don’t get scammed, go to the Federal Trade Commission’s website (Google it), and click on the link for a free credit report directly from there. To save you time, please know that you will have to do each one (Equifax, Experian & Transunion) separately. Don’t check off all three when they ask you which ones you want, because you’ll only get one at a time anyway. When you’re done with the first one, hit the “back” button and go back to the “AnnualCreditReport.com” homepage and re-enter your personal info again to get to the next credit reporting agency.

    • C April 18, 2013 at 9:14AM

      Thanks for the tip, Catherine. Sounds like solid advice.

    • Sylvia July 4, 2013 at 6:51AM

      Thanks for the advice. I am going to try it now and see if it works. I went to the article first in order to see what people were saying and to get some comments.

  100. tom jones December 14, 2012 at 7:10AM

    The site is not confusing in the slightest, although it is not free. Basically, what you get for free is a analysis of the components that, when summed up, give you your credit score. If you’re good at math, you can easily look at these charts and get an idea of how your credit is: Good, bad or mediocre. BUT, to get a proper credit score, you have to pay an $8 fee. The report they provide for free does not contain your credit score rating, which makes this site a total waste of time.

  101. John November 19, 2012 at 8:09AM

    With me, only Experian did not work, they have three steps, and the third one does not give any option to open your free credit report: SCAM. Equifax and TransUnion went ok. I printed to PDF (I have a Mac) and I got the reports.

  102. Sally November 3, 2012 at 10:20AM

    I had no problem entering the TransUnion site. However, to obtain info from Equifax or Experion just didn’t work. These two want the individual to mail personal info to them addressed as: Annual Credit Report Request Service. Are they nuts? Someone out there will surely put two and two together and figure out that there is peronal info contained inside the envelope and guess what? the envelope will be lost. Right!!!!!!!!!!!!!! At least I was able to print the info I needed from TransUnion.

  103. kesha September 3, 2012 at 8:59AM

    I used annualcreditreport.com when i went on the site i followed directions and did not have no problem getting my 3credit reports i was fast and i did not have to put no credit card number in like most of the other websites. Finally will be using annualcreditreport.com They didnt ask me for no creditcard information. Queens, NY

  104. Scam Indeed August 5, 2012 at 10:20AM

    The annual credit report website has NEVER EVER worked for me. I am accurately inputting my data as required, yet both Transunion and Experian fail to provide me a report, and tell me to buy one instead or phone in for it to be mailed. So I phone in and they say it cannot be completed and hang up. Equifax link just times out after trying to connect for minutes. THIS HAS GONE ON FOR MONTHS. I’ve tried over a dozen times in 6 months and always the same result. Same for my wife, too. This is a total scam and they need to be brought to justice.

    • Equifax broken August 18, 2012 at 9:39PM

      I’m having the same problem with Equifax. My credit report pulled up, then when trying to save as .pdf or print, it times out after several minutes. Server error. Maybe they do server maintenance 23 hours and 45 minutes a day. I’m sure many people get frustrated with the “free” annual report and opt for the paid services that actually work. Quite a business model.

    • Jim Norwood September 18, 2012 at 12:48PM

      Today I selected all 3 checkboxes for Equifax, TransUnion and Experion at annualcreditreport but was only shown Equifax. After I took screenshots of Equifax pages I clicked the “return to annualcreditreport.com” link at the top of the summary page. Instead, it opened a new window with choices to buy my score or repeat access to Equifax. That new window also had a link to return to acr.com that did take me there, but instead of showing me the remaining reports, I was at the beginning page of acr asking what state I’m in again.
      After selecting TN I filled out the same identifier page I had before, but was rejected, being told I was only entitled to one report per year.
      THEREFORE, I believe the site has denied me access to 2 of the 3 reports I’m entitled to by law.

      • A M January 14, 2013 at 6:47AM

        I had a similar problem as you!!

      • Chris January 21, 2013 at 10:33AM

        You are entitled to ONE of the three per year. Not one of each of the three.

  105. Michael July 12, 2012 at 11:20PM

    The 6-digit code that they want you to phone in never works. They give you two attempts to enter this code, both of which unsurprisingly fail, and then they hang up.

  106. Ralph Macho July 5, 2012 at 1:05AM

    I used this site and all three credit reports were denied because they couldn’t verify me. So much for free and easy service.

  107. Cheri June 29, 2012 at 2:03PM

    After reading the article and subsequent comments, it seems that a followup article describing how to successfully navigate the seeming complexity of the website — including how to request the scores one at a time (as you suggest) — would be extremely helpful in order to get the most out of the website’s service without accidentally “signing up” for some program!

  108. maureen April 9, 2012 at 1:15PM

    I have just received in the mail a letter from Experian stating that a request was made to them that my free annual credit report be mailed to me. I did not make that request and they also do not have my full legal name on their “Prepared for ———” Date March 31st 2012. I do not know why I received this. Anyone know anything about this?

    • Paula April 20, 2012 at 3:09AM

      The same thing just happened to me. TransUnion said they couldn’t send the report because the address didn’t match the one in my report, and they asked me for evidence of the new address.

      So I went to annualcreditreport.com to pull my own reports, and the first credit reporting agency came up (can’t remember which, but not TransUnion) and said I couldn’t get another free credit report because I had received one within the past 30 days… which I hadn’t. So one bureau released all of my information to someone. TransUnion at least didn’t send it out and alerted me.

      This just happened this evening, so I haven’t made any calls yet. Did you investigate your situation at all?

  109. Roy Huberland March 10, 2012 at 12:11PM

    I would like to caution your viewers about freecreditreport.com, a company which advertises heavily on television. I agreed to pay a $1.00 fee to view my credit scores, and gave them a credit card number. The next thing I knew I was being charged a $29.99 fee. Their website is deceptive; I was told if I cancelled their service within the first seven days– which I did– there would be no further charges. I am currently disputing their charges with my credit card company.. Consumers Beware!

    Very truly yours,
    Roy Huberland

  110. Neil January 3, 2012 at 10:58PM

    I used annualcreditreport.com last year and found the site very confusing to maneuver. Knowing that it was the main site endorsed by the government I wasn’t expecting the focus on being a monthly fee based service. Also, the site should make it clear that the 3 reports can be checked separately at different times of the year. ONE thing, when I hear the word “REPORT” I think my CREDIT SCORE would be included in such a report. Why isn’t it?

    • Richard April 21, 2013 at 4:22PM

      As Steve Martin said in “The Jerk”, “Oh, it’s a profid deal!” My guess is that the deal worked with congress provided for the credit reporters to be able to make some money on their “free” service. This free service does actually cost them some money when people discover all the errors in their reports and ask to have them fixed. I’ sure the CR’s would prefer nobody could ever see their credit own report!

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