Barrar’s Bill to Protect Consumers from Identity Theft Passes Committee
HARRISBURG – Legislation sponsored by Rep. Steve Barrar (R-Chester/Delaware) to protect Commonwealth citizens by eliminating the automatic expiration of security freezes on consumer credit reports passed the House Commerce Committee unanimously today.

“As many of us do a great deal of shopping and other activities online, we are becoming more susceptible to identity theft. The criminals are unnervingly cunning, often gathering our information in ways we would never think possible,” Barrar said. “This bill would be a tremendous comfort, giving those who suffered from this violation peace of mind that the injustice won’t continue.”

When a consumer freezes his or her credit report, it becomes more difficult for a criminal to commit identity theft and open accounts on behalf of the consumer. Without being able to view the consumer’s credit report, most creditors will not approve a new account or extend the credit.

House Bill 1094 would allow a consumer’s credit report to be frozen indefinitely, only to have the freeze removed at the consumer’s request. Currently, security freezes expire automatically after seven years.

A fee to place the freeze may be charged except when there is a police report alleging identity fraud or if the person is under 16 years old and in foster care.

Credit freezes do not prevent consumers from getting their free annual credit report from each of the three nationwide credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and Transunion. The reports can monitored for inaccurate information, which can be an indication of identity theft.

The bill now advances to the full House for consideration.

Representative Stephen E. Barrar
160th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Alison Evans
717.260.6206 /

Share |