What Is a ChexSystems Security Freeze?

Banking

If you’re not familiar with the consumer report agency ChexSystems, consider yourself lucky. The consumer reporting agency tracks information on your banking habits, like overdrafts, bounced checks, suspected cases of fraud, and more.

This information is included in your ChexSystems report. When you attempt to open a new bank account, banks and credit unions can use this report to view your banking history and either approve or deny your request.

The problem is, identity thieves can steal your information, open a new bank account in your name, and misuse that account. This can cause all kinds of financial problems for you down the road.

ChexSystems Security Freeze

If this happens, you’ll want to utilize something called a ChexSystems security freeze. When you freeze your report, you effectively prohibit the agency from releasing any information without your consent.

This prevents anyone from opening a new bank account or line of credit in your name. However, the freeze does not apply to lenders who want to check your report for a preapproved offer.

One thing to be aware of is that implementing a security freeze may delay or prevent financial institutions from accessing your ChexSystems report that you wish to do business with. The bank or credit union will receive a message indicating that you have blocked access to your information.

When you submit a security freeze request to ChexSystems, it will only be applied to your ChexSystems consumer report. It will not affect any of your other consumer credit reports. If you wish to restrict access to major credit bureaus or other consumer reporting agencies, you must contact them directly.

Personal Identification Number (PIN)

Once you place a security freeze on your consumer file, you will receive a unique personal identification number (PIN) by mail. You will need the PIN to perform specific actions regarding your security freeze, such as applying a temporary lift, removing,or changing personal identifying information (for example, address, Social Security number, etc.). If you lose the PIN, you’ll need to request a new one in writing.

How to Remove the Security Freeze

If you wish to remove the ChexSystems security freeze, you can do so at any time. You can request to remove it temporarily or permanently at ChexSystems’ website.

Other ChexSystems Resources

If you would like to learn how to get out of ChexSystems, click here.

If you would like to see a list of banks that don’t use ChexSystems, visit this page.

3 Banks That Don’t Use ChexSystems

Chime

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Overview
  • No credit check or ChexSystems
  • No minimum opening deposit or monthly service fee
  • Over 60,000+ fee-free1 ATMs
  • Get paid up to 2 days early with direct deposit2
  • Available in all 50 states

Current

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Visit Site
Overview
  • No credit check or ChexSystems
  • No minimum opening deposit
  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • Get paid up to 2 days faster
  • Overdraft up to $200 without any overdraft fees

Chase

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Overview
  • No credit check or ChexSystems
  • $100 bonus after 10 purchases in 60 days
  • Over 16,000+ fee-free ATMs
  • $4.95 monthly service fee

1. Out-of-network ATM withdrawal fees may apply with Chime except at MoneyPass ATMs in a 7-Eleven, or any Allpoint or Visa Plus Alliance ATM.

2. Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the submission of the payment file from the payer. Chime generally make these funds available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the scheduled payment date.

Jamie Johnson
Meet the author

Jamie Johnson is a freelance writer who has been featured in publications like InvestorPlace and GOBankingRates. She writes about various personal finance topics including student loans, credit cards, investing, building credit, and more.