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Free credit reports available to residents

BISMARCK - Effective today, North Dakotan residents can get a free credit report from all three major credit reporting agencies, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem says.

Under a federal law passed last year, people can access one free credit report each year from the three nationwide credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Prior to the change, people were entitled to a free credit report only after being turned down for credit, Stenehjem said.

"A credit report is the first line of defense against identity theft," Stenehjem said. "I urge everyone to take advantage of the free credit reports and review the information ... to make sure it is accurate. If there is any suspicious activity, be sure to notify the credit bureau immediately."

North Dakota and 11 other states are included in the second phase of a four-phase rollout which began in September.

Forum and wire reports