If you've ever visited annualcreditreport.com, you know the answer. Upon arriving at the site you are bombarded with ads for additional proprietary (for pay) services from each credit reporting agency. To navigate through the free site, you go into multiple pages of ads, some placed in ways that appear designed to confuse and lead the consumer away from free to pay.
Under the Credit Card Act of 2009, the Federal Trade Commission is required to amend the rules governing annual free credit reports by February 22, 2010. The FTC is accepting public comment through November 30, 2009. Read the proposed changes and submit your own comments at http://public.commentworks.com/ftc/FreeCreditReportNPRM.
Below is a summary of my comments:
- Credit bureaus should not be allowed to advertise additional pay services until AFTER the consumer has received the free credit report.
- Links to credit bureau websites should be on the annualcreditreport.com website only AFTER the consumer has received the free credit report. Links to pay services before that point are confusing and often lead consumers away from the freecreditreport.com site.
- If consumers click links on annualcreditreport.com that take them to a proprietary page, they should be greeted by a bold warning and disclosure: "THIS IS NOT THE FREE CREDIT REPORT PROVIDED FOR BY FEDERAL LAW."