A lot of people are worried about financial security during the coronavirus pandemic. That's why it's important for you to stay up-to-date on your credit reports, but a new survey says fewer people are checking.
"The troubling thing about that is it's never been easier to get a free credit report," said Matt Schulz, chief credit analyst at LendingTree. "You can even do it once a week because of a rule change that the bureaus put in at the start of the pandemic."
The survey also broke down which age groups are going through their credit reports. LendingTree found that the Silent Generation and Baby Boomers check their reports less often than other generations.
"They may not be as likely to be pursuing a mortgage or an auto loan or credit card so their credit report may not make that much of a difference to them," said Schulz. "However those most vulnerable to fraud may be the least likely to have checked."
Generation X and Millenials were most likely to be checking their credit reports at least once a month.
Schulz says you don't need to check every week, but that only 33% of people said they had checked their credit report in the last year. That's down from the number of people who said they check their reports annually over the last two years.
"It's important for you to check your credit report," said Schulz. "It's important for you to stay on top of things when it comes to identity theft and it really doesn't take that long to do either."
Schulz says simply checking your credit score isn't enough. There's a lot of detailed information in credit reports that can show issues with your financial safety.
"The credit report is basically your history for the past seven to 10 years of how many different loans you've had and how you've handled them," said Schulz. "Mistakes happen on these reports more often than you might imagine."
These mistakes can impact you the next time you go to open a credit card or take out a loan for a home or car. That's why Schulz says you need to check your reports at least once a year.
"If you have time to check Twitter and Instagram and Facebook 10 times a day you have time to be able to take some of these preventative steps when it comes to identity theft," said Schulz.
If you want to get a free copy of your credit report, visit AnnualCreditReport.com. If you do see something wrong or questionable on your credit report, reach out to that credit reporting agency online or by phone.