HARTFORD, Conn. (Legal Newsline) — Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen announced March 15 that he has submitted testimony to the General Assembly’s Banks Committee in support of legislation that would ban the three major credit rating agencies in the U.S. from charging fees to place or remove credit security freezes.

"In recent years, a large number of Connecticut consumers have been victims of massive data breaches that exposed their personal information and put them at risk for identity theft," Jepsen said in a statement. "The massive Equifax data breach – which affects more than 1.5 million Connecticut residents – is a prime example. That breach exposed names, addresses, birth dates, Social Security numbers and some driver's license numbers, all critical information that can be used to steal someone's identity.”

Many states have already banned the credit agencies from charging fees. Current Connecticut law, however, allows the agencies to do so. Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff joined in urging Connecticut to adopt a similar law.

"Consumers don't choose to have their credit history saved by these companies and it is not right that they would have to pay any company to freeze their credit," Duff said in a statement. "The consumers who are punished the most are the ones who can least afford to pay the fee to freeze their credit. This bill will give consumers greater control and flexibility over their credit and will prevent them from being held hostage to fees charged by credit reporting agencies."

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