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Lawsuit settlement provides free credit monitoring to millions of consumers

Jeremy Simon

See more recent storyDeadline passed for free TransUnion credit monitoring

Millions of consumers will soon be eligible for free credit monitoring for nine months as the result of a tentative class action lawsuit settlement announced today.

TransUnion lawsuit settlment means free credit monitoring

The settlement addresses charges that were pending for many years surrounding the way that TransUnion — one of the three large credit reporting bureaus in the United States — once sold marketing lists. “As part of the settlement we’ll be providing consumers up to nine months of credit monitoring,” said Colleen Ryan, TransUnion’s vice president of corporate and community affairs.

A huge number of borrowers stand to benefit. The settlement (see TransUnion settlement details emerge) represents an opportunity for millions of consumers to enjoy the credit monitoring services that TransUnion already provides, but for free. That group essentially encompasses “consumers who were credit active from January 1, 1987, until yesterday,” Ryan said. That includes anyone who had an auto loan, a credit card, a department store card, a student loan or a mortgage.

The credit monitoring service usually costs $11.95 per month after a 30-day free trial.

TransUnion expressed satisfaction with the outcome. “We are really very pleased that the settlement entitles so many consumers to these benefits, because it is a real benefit,” said Ryan. “It presents an opportunity for consumers who want to be more involved in monitoring their credit health.”

Ed Mierzwinski, consumer program director for the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, was unimpressed. “Credit bureaus fail to protect information from ID thieves, then set up overpriced protection rackets, then sometimes get caught for deceptive marketing,” Mierzwinski said. “I would never pay for monitoring. The security freeze is better. Consumers need to be wary that they aren’t tricked into paying for more monitoring at the end of the 9 months.”

The target marketing business was discontinued in 2001. In reaching this settlement, TransUnion acknowledged no wrongdoing. “We always belived that the practices in question were lawful,” Ryan said, highlighting the increase in concerns over consumer privacy in recent years as a cause for the suit.

The company was accused in the suit of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act. A judge in the Eastern Division of the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois granted preliminary approval of the settlement on Wednesday.

TransUnion is working quickly to get a Web site up and running that will further outline the benefits for eligible consumers at It should be available to consumers by June 16, the company said.

See related: TransUnion settlement details emerge, TransUnion settlement sign-up period begins, Credit freezes go national, get chilly welcome

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  • Dave Hackford

    But you can`t log into web -site

  • karen jameson

    Where do I go to sign up for the free credit montoring? Please email me the link thanks Karen

  • Beth A Criqui

    My husband and I would like to be on this list. We have been active in credit card, vehicle loans,
    and Mortgage during these years specified. Please let us know how this is suppose to be done to assure that we get the free Credit Reports for each of us for the nine months? Who do we contact to get on the list. Beth A. and Charles K. Criqui, Sr. and Thanks

  • Dave, Karen and Beth,
    You’ll need to visit starting June 16 in order to sign up for the free credit monitoring. The Web site should have full details available at that time.

  • Pam

    I heard on the news today (6/16/08) that we can hold off for a possible monetary settlement versus the credit reporting settlement. Is that correct?
    Thank you.

  • Pam,
    That sounds accurate. As one of the lawyers involved in the case explained it to me, by agreeing to six months of free credit monitoring, you give up your right to pursue class action against TransUnion. However, you can still bring an individual claim against the credit bureau. If you opt for nine months of credit monitoring, you also give up the right to pursue an individual claim.

  • Stanley Hirsch

    I am looking for a free credit report

  • Justus E. Otto

    How do I sign up for this free credit report? Please email me as to the process. Thank You,
    Justus E. Otto

  • evelyn patrick

    how do you sign up

  • derrick crawley

    how do I sign up.

  • To sign up for the free TransUnion credit monitoring, please visit:

  • John Perez

    where do I sign up?

  • Ms. Tino Roberts

    Where do I sign up? I can’t open up the website.
    THank you.

  • To sign up for the free TransUnion credit monitoring, please visit:

  • tom jones

    where do I sign up?

  • Anonymous

    why would they want youn to be able to log on i tryed to mabe we can get claim for this

  • May I say….

    that to me, this seems like a commercial for this “free” credit monitoring service. Not to mention the irony of allowing a company that may have possibly sold your private information to act as your “credit monitor”. In a sense, isn’t that what they are guilty of? Not to mention, I thought you are entitled to compensation ONLY if you were harmed,damaged or dis-enfranchised in some way.
    I’m not sure who to be mad at……..
    I’ll have to see how this all plays out.

  • Pam

    I went to sign up and they are asking for date of birth, social security number. I don’t feel comfortable putting that information online. Isn’t that risky? How do I know who that information is going to?

  • elizabeth

    please e mail so i can sign up

  • Pam,
    You are smart to be cautious about providing personal information online.
    However, in this case your data should be safe. It goes to the benefits administrator for the TransUnion settlement via a secure site (denoted by the “https” in the URL) and you only need to supply the final four digits of your social security number, not the entire number.

  • gidget castro

    How do I get the email address. Thanks Gidget

  • Gidget,
    You don’t need to email to sign up, but instead should visit:

  • Pat

    Their website seems to be down, but if all you really want is free copies of your credit reports, you can go to the FTC-approved site Each of the 3 agencies is required by law to send you a free report once a year if you request it through that website.
    The details are explained at:
    It is completely noncommercial and government monitored.

  • Anonymous

    how do i get gcredit report?

  • hugh jameson

    i have registered at the appropriate website and have a registration number. what the next step to gaining the benefit of the credit score from trans-union.
    thanks for your response. perhaps i may need only enter the number with a request for credit score.

  • Hugh,
    I’d just stay tuned for more information from TransUnion.

  • james w.crabb,sr

    how do i sign up

  • Karen

    Does anyone know when the free credit period starts? I’ve been waiting to hear.

  • Joyce Sykes

    I just want to know if a settlement has been made and when will we find out about the settlement?

  • Jessie

    I am just curious how to sign up for the credit monitoring, and if it has begun yet. I just went to the TransUnion site and was unable to find anything relevant.

  • James, Karen, Joyce and Jessie:
    This link should help answer your questions:

  • Cari

    my name is cari and i want to know if i’m registered for benefits. i checked the website even though it hasnt been update in years. so what’s going on with it have the people gotten their money yet.

  • Joyce Sykes

    Have they reached a settlement yet? When will we know something? THANKS!!

  • E.Bryant

    I signed up for class action suit—never heard a thing–and nothing has changed! still refusing to clear off wrong info/fix errors

  • Mary Horton

    When was this money in millions paid and when are we suppose to get the money they promised us we would get there would be no settlement if it was not for us people and then the lawyers take it all I have not got any of that money!