If you’re concerned about identity theft (and these days, who isn’t?), there is good news. As of September 21, 2018, you have the right to ask the consumer reporting agencies that operate on a nationwide basis to freeze your credit files and lift the freeze, whenever you want, at no charge. “Security freezes” make it harder for fraudsters to use stolen information about you to open new credit accounts, which was the most common type of identity theft reported to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in 2017. Before this new federal law took effect, only consumers in certain states had the right to free freezes, and in some states that right was limited to identity theft victims. Now everyone can take advantage of this protection for free.