Is OptOutPrescreen.com a legit website?
Do you have doubts as to whether optoutscreen.com is a service you can trust? You’re certainly not the only one—this is the top question on the website’s security FAQ list. The answer is yes, it is a legit website, even if you’re right to be suspicious. Let’s take a look at the red flags you should pay attention to before sharing your personal information with optoutscreen.com—or any other website.
About pre-screened lists
Before we start, let’s clarify what pre-approved or pre-screened credit card or insurance lists are. Prescreened lists are compilations of consumer information, specifically credit profiles, that are used by credit card companies and lenders for targeted marketing purposes. These lists are created based on criteria such as credit scores, income levels, and other relevant factors, allowing credit card issuers to identify potential customers who meet their specific requirements.
What is OptOutPrescreen?
Optoutprescreen.com allows you to remove your data from pre-approved insurance and credit card lists. How does it work? OptOutPrescreen is a joint venture of the US’s primary credit card and insurance firms. The website can accept and process your request to be removed from all of them, either for five years or permanently. In other words, the service provides a way to exercise your rights under the FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act). It’s also a way for these main credit bureaus to stay compliant with it.
Should you be concerned?
There are many reasons to be careful before submitting your opt-out application on optoutprescreen.com. For starters, it calls for sensitive information such as your name, address, Social Security number, and date of birth.
In fact, you should think twice and triple-check before submitting any of the above information anywhere. Consequences may range from your data being shared with third-party entities without your knowledge all the way to identity theft. Not to mention all the scam calls and emails you might have to deal with.
Is OptOutPrescreen a legitimate website ?
Yes, OptOutPrescreen is a legit site and service. It is the only website authorized by the four major US consumer reporting companies to collect and process opt-out requests, and it’s referenced by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) in their article on how to stop junk mail.
That said, the website doesn’t invite trust, and here’s why.
Don’t judge a book by its cover
Unless you’re talking about websites that ask for your sensitive data. One of the first things you will notice when browsing a page is how it looks. Before you type anything in, always review the following:
- Does the address contain any special characters?
- Is the page encrypted (look for HTTPS in the address bar)?
- Does the spelling and grammar look right?
While optoutprescreen.com checks all of these boxes, something about the colors, layout, and font is slightly off. It looks as if the design was quickly and carelessly put together. This is probably what made you suspicious about the service in the first place.
How can you contact optoutprescreen.com?
The biggest red flag, though, is the Contact Us section. Let’s hope you won’t have any questions or feedback because, if you do, good old pen and paper are your best friends. In other words, you can either call optoutprescreen.com or send them a physical letter—online chat and email are not options. This, in turn, raises questions about the website’s transparency—will you be notified once your request has been received and then processed?
The fine print
OptOutPrescreen is also not making any promises about what will happen with your data once your opt-out request has been processed. Your data will be shared with Consumer Credit Reporting Companies, their affiliates, related companies, and third parties.
Check opinions and reviews online
It’s always a good idea to read consumer reviews before signing up for a service. Sadly, these are not encouraging when it comes to optoutprescreen.com. Most reviewers bluntly call it a scam and complain of a lack of transparency, accountability, and customer service.
Why does OptOutPrescreen need my Social Security number?
While this information is not a required field on the opt-out request form, the website’s FAQs strongly encourage you to submit it to ensure a successful opt-out process. We recommend that you send your request without providing this highly sensitive data point.
How to stop junk mail once and for all
Credit reporting companies have no interest in removing your name from their lists, which means that they will not try to make the process easy for you or hire a graphic designer. For more advice on how to reduce the amount of scam calls and junk mail you receive daily, check out our detailed article on how to stop junk mail.
Given that junk mail is just one sad consequence of your online data being readily available to data brokers, you may consider treating the root cause of the problem. Removing your information from the internet is possible, but tedious. Follow our comprehensive step-by-step guide to do it yourself.
You may also consider using an automated data removal service like Incogni. Incogni will contact data brokers on your behalf and make sure your name is no longer on their lists.
What is the Fair Credit Reporting Act?
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a federal law regulating the collection of consumers’ credit information as well as access to credit reports. According to this law, prospecting creditors and insurers can receive your details from credit reporting agencies. Your name may end up on the list if you match specific target-audience criteria. However, the same act also stipulates that consumers have the right to opt out and have their names removed from these lists.
What does opt out prescreen do?
OptOutPrescreen is a service that allows individuals to opt out of receiving prescreened offers for credit or insurance. By opting out, you can reduce the amount of unwanted mail and protect your privacy.
Why does OptOutPrescreen need my Social Security number?
OptOutPrescreen calls for your Social Security number so they can confirm your identity and ensure that they are able to accurately process your opt-out request. However, your SSN is not a required field on the form and you can submit your request without it.
Is it safe to give Social Security number to opt out of credit card offers?
You should never provide your SSN to anyone unless it is absolutely necessary, as doing so exposes your personal information to potential theft. Identity thieves can use your SSN to access various accounts, open new credit lines, and cause harm to your financial well-being and reputation.
Who runs Optoutprescreen?
Optoutpresecreen is a website and service run by four major consumer credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, TransUnion and Innovis. The website was created to meet the requirements of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, allowing consumers to opt-out of prescreened insurance and credit card lists.
What are credit card companies?
Credit card companies are financial institutions that provide credit cards to consumers and businesses. Some of the most recognizable of these companies worldwide are Visa, Mastercard, Citibank, and American Express.