Thoughts, stories and ideas.

If you are tired of receiving junk mails, fret not - there's is something you can do about it! I personally get a ton of marketing mails (bulk of which related to credit cards) and I find it extremely wasteful of paper and efforts to get these mails delivered to my mailbox.

With a little bit of research, I found a simple way to stop companies from sending  credit card marketing mails for temporary or forever: OptOutPrescreen.com.

OptOutPrescreen.com is a joint venture among Equifax Information Services, LLC, Experian Information Solutions, Inc., Innovis Data Solutions, Inc., and TransUnion, LLC (collectively the "Consumer Credit Reporting Companies") - these are consumer credit report agencies that, under Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), are permitted to include your name on lists used by creditors or insurers to make firm offers of credit or insurance.

By opting out, you're basically telling the credit bureaus that you don't want your information sold to credit card companies. There are 2 ways to opt out:

  1. Phone: By calling 1-888-5OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688). I tried this method and a  voice prompt walked me through the process and asked for basic information like name, social security number, birth date and address and I responded by the use of keypad and/or verbally spelling requirements. It took me around 5 minutes to complete the request and towards the end of the call, the voice prompt provided an option of adding family members. I did not take up this option but I imagine that it's more efficient as family members tend to share the same address and that means less words to say!
  2. Website: https://www.optoutprescreen.com. I find this the easier route - all it took was less than a minute to fill in the online form. Similar to the phone option, I was asked for name, social security number, birth date and address. Let me reiterate that you need to make sure that you are using the right URL (with httpS = secured) as you are providing personal information and you don't want this to end up in the wrong hands!

Note that both options below refer to temporary hold of marketing mails for 5 years. For permanent hold, there's an additional required step:

  1. Phone: During the call, the voice prompt asked if I wanted to opt out permanently. After providing my confirmation, I was notified that a Permanent Opt-Out Election form would be sent to my address that I need to fill out and send back to the agency. And I did receive the form in my mailbox about a week after my call - it was quite nifty, like an envelope within an envelope. I just had to sign and slap a stamp and done!
  2. Website: There's an option to print out the Permanent Opt-Out Election form which you would need to send back by mail.

Easy, right? It has only been a week since I filled out the forms and hopefully it works. I will provide an update in the next month or so for results.

Let me know what you think and if you have other ideas for sustainable living, feel free to send 'em my way. Thank you and have a great day!