True Identity Review: Free Unlimited TransUnion Credit Reports, Free Credit Lock, No Credit Card Required

trueidentity0TrueIdentity by TransUnion is a new identity protection website that is free with no credit card required and no trial memberships. The highlights:

  • Free TransUnion credit reports. Unlimited reports and refreshes.
  • Free Credit Lock feature. Stop access to your TransUnion report with a single swipe or click.
  • Free instant alerts. Includes alerts for new accounts, inquiries or address changes.
  • Free mobile app. Android and iOS.

I decided to sign up and dig around. Here’s a screenshot of the main dashboard (click to enlarge):

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Free TransUnion credit report details. A partial screenshot of my report page is below. As one of the three major credit bureaus, TransUnion already has all your other personal information. I’m glad they let me see it for free. Note that you’ll have to pay to see reports from the other two credit bureaus, Equifax and Experian (see below). The report is free and current, although I can’t seem to find how often you are allowed to refresh your report.

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Free Credit Lock feature details. When you credit report is “locked”, it can’t be accessed by creditors, landlords, or employers. If they ask for it, their request will be denied. Credit Lock appears to be another layer created by TransUnion that is separate from a formal credit freeze (which I believe is regulated by law). A credit freeze is free only if you are already a victim of identity theft, otherwise it costs a fee and you often have to call in to get it lifted. I believe the requests must be submitted during the following times for immediate processing:

Monday-Saturday, 2 a.m.-11 p.m. Central Time
Sunday, 5 a.m.-11 p.m. Central Time

During these times (only a 3 hour gap around midnight during weekdays), the credit lock is pretty much instant (they warn that it may take up to 5 minutes). Therefore, you can theoretically keep your TransUnion report locked at all times, and then lift that lock just minutes before you actually apply for a loan or credit card. That’s my plan. Here’s a screenshot of my post-lock page:

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Free instant alerts details. You can pick from instant e-mail or SMS text alerts. I believe there are alerts via the mobile app as well. They will e-mail you weekly or monthly to confirm that you have no new alerts.

If it’s free, how will TransUnion make money? First, you will see ads for credit products (much like similar credit-related sites). Second, you can upgrade to their TrueIdentity Premium tier, which costs $9.99 a month and adds the following features:

  • TransUnion credit score (VantageScore 3.0).
  • Credit report data from the other two credit bureaus, Equifax and Experian.
  • Phone access to Identity Restoration & Lost Wallet Specialists with up to 1,000,000 in Identity Theft Insurance.
  • Premium alerts which monitor additional databases including black market websites, courtroom records, and payday loan databases.

Bottom line. TrueIdentity by TransUnion offers some handy features for the excellent price of free. No trials, no credit card required. You might be able to get your TransUnion credit report data elsewhere, but the real-time Credit Lock feature is unique. You’ll have to upgrade to $9.99 a month for features like cash insurance or an army of helpers to guide you if you do become a victim of identity theft. But again, there is no need to upgrade, ever.

Comments

  1. Good review. There is not much information on the internet about the free and the paid True Identity products. As your review states, the free product is an excellent value. I elected to upgrade to the premium product for $9.95 per month, which I also believe is an excellent value.

  2. The links to the TrueIdentity website in this article look suspicious. something about jdoqocy.com. Have they been corrupted in some way? There are comments on the VirusTotal website saying that there is malware at that site. The address for TrueIdentity is: https://www.transunion.com/product/trueidentity-free-identity-protection#

  3. I’m just curious. Have you tested the free Credit Lock that the free TrueIdentity in any way, to make sure it’s successful? Does it really act in pretty much the same way as a freeze? Seems kind of amazing that they offer it for free and make it so easy to lock and unlock the report.

  4. Eugene Kaganovich says:

    Read the terms of service carefully. https://membership.trueidentity.com/tucm/support.page?panel=legal

    There’s an arbitration and waiver of class action that you *can* opt out of, but you have to do it in writing within 60 days of signing up for service. It *seems* that it only applies to the service itself, not sure if they could use it to, e.g. exclude you from a class action if they leak your personal info.

    Also, “You understand that in order to receive the free products, you must agree to receive targeted offers by TransUnion and other third parties.”

  5. Joe Schwartz says:

    TrueIdentity DOES NOT give you free access to other reporting agencies reports. That is ANOTHER $30. I suspect the Experian service may be a better value. Too late now.

    • Experian’s free service doesn’t allow the Credit Report Lock feature. Transunion’s TrueIdentity is better in this important way. To get the tier of service that allows Experian’s Credit Report Lock plus access to all 3 bureaus’ reports on a regular basis, you have to pay $4.99 for the first month, then 24.99 per month every month after that.

      • Experian’s new Identity Works service at $9.99 or $19.99 per month includes the ability to lock your Experian report. If you prepay for a year the price is $99.99 or $199.99.

    • One last reply…You know you can go to annualcreditreport.com to get 1 report from each agency per year for free, right? The 29.95 that TransUnion is asking for to get 3 reports is a one-time deal, not giving unlimited access. Experian’s cost for the same deal is $39.95.

  6. Honestly, why would you expect TU to provide you with free credit reports from other agencies.

  7. also, why do you say it’s “too late”?

  8. In Massachusetts at least, there is a SIGNIFICANT difference between a freeze and TransUnion’s TrueIdentity service. Mass. law states that the freeze may be lifted for a *specific* third party. If you unlock via TrueIdentity, even for a moment, what prevents TransUnion from instantly notifying all their “partners” which then swoop in to grab your credit info in order to spam you with credit offers? Or what if a “bad guy” just happens to attempt to open an account in your name while your credit is unlocked for a few days?

    Does that sound far fetched? Well, try putting an unprotected server with old un-patched software on the Internet, and see how long it takes to get hacked… I’d be surprised if it lasts 24 hours. That’s because bots are constantly attempting to find openings. Maybe crooks will do the same thing with all the leaked Equifax data stolen in 2017, years later, perpetually looking for a lucky break.

    • Maybe it wouldn’t help the issue of credit offers (there is, however, an opt-out procedure for at least pre-screened offers if one wishes to be rid of them), but having a fraud alert *might* be one layer of protection against criminals trying to open accounts at the time the TransUnion report is unlocked. Of course, one would have to remember to maintain the fraud alerts on their reports.

  9. Chaosunraveled says:

    There is a bug in the True Identity software. Last week, I got partway through setting up a True Identity account, possibly including erroneous entries on my part. When I went back in to complete the sign-up, I found that True Identity displayed name, address, credit information for someone else. That SHOULD NEVER HAPPEN, regardless of any errors I make. I was able to get their support personnel to kill the account, but just try getting someone knowledgeable of the software, and with the authority affect a fix. If this happened this once with me, then with the hundreds of millions of consumers whose information these companies keep it is guaranteed to happen, probably has happened many more times.

  10. I did, speak my mind, but it appears to have been deleted. Hmmmm…

  11. Got through the signing up with TrueIdentity very easily. For four days now, I’ve been trying to freeze my credit information and cannot get that accomplished. The website says to have patience because of the Equifax breech there is a lot of traffic on that site but this is ridiculous! I’ve been trying different hours of the day and night. C’mon!!! What gives????

    • Are you trying to freeze or lock? All bureaus are delayed for freezes due to the Equifax hack. If you want to lock and have signed up for the True Identity free plan all you need to due is click on the lock/unlock icon.

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