One of the biggest national news stories of the past couple weeks has been the widespread data breach from one of the three credit rating agencies companies in charge with keeping our personal information confidential. Equifax was the company that was breached, and experts are warning essentially every adult American that their information could be at risk.

You may have also seen stories recently about having to pay fees in order to freeze your credit. Freezing your credit gives you an additional layer of protection from potential thieves. When your credit is frozen, if someone attempts to use your credit or applies for say, a new credit card, you would immediately be notified. In some states, it can cost as much as $200 to freeze or unfreeze your credit. But not in Maine.

Under Maine law, you can freeze/unfreeze your credit as much as you need to in order to keep yourself protected. Maine recently updated their website to make Mainers aware that Equifax is slow to respond by phone and website due to the high volume of interaction they're receiving, but to be patient. If you still can't get through, you can file a complaint through the State of Maine's website, which would serve as a protection from being unable to freeze your credit.

Be extra aware of your credit cards, your credit score and personal information in the months (and potentially years) moving forward.

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