Friday, March 23, 2012

Credit reporting companies "upselling" to identity theft victims


Bob Sullivan has an article on MSNBC on the practice of “upselling” to identity theft victims by credit reporting companies, when they should be focused solely on fixing errors.  The link is here.

The practice vaguely reminds me of the STD website, where the owner tries to tell people falsely listed that they can buy an online reputation repair service.  That was on the Anderson Cooper show recently and it sounds like extortion.

Companies are hiring an paying commissions to low wage people to go out and sell other services in cookie-cutter fashion that consumers don’t need.   You could say that this is a symptom of weak social capital.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Consumer Reports slams credit industry behavior on inexact credit scores sold to consumers


Kathleen Pender has a valuable article in the March/April 2011 Consumer Reports, p. 29, “Credit Sore Outrage: why the ultimate numbers game is out of control”, link here  (requires online paywall; the print version is easily found at CVS stores). 
  
The article talks about a “Fake-O-Fico” score. The scores that credit reporting sites sell you are not guaranteed to be the same as what lenders see.  The companies say the score you see is within 15-20 points.

 There seems to be no way to know in advance exactly what lenders (or employers) will see. 

Vantage and Fair Isaccs (FICO) scores have different schedules.

Also, be wary that credit reporting companies (especially Experian) will sell you scores based on your report with them, and it may not match exactly a combined score.