(Chris Blakeley)

Credit Reports Soon Won’t Include Some Tax Lien, Civil Judgment Data

Millions of consumers could soon see their FICO credit scores increase as the three credit reporting agencies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — take another step to overhaul their systems by excluding certain negative information related to tax liens and civil judgments from credit reports. [More]


Would You Break Up With Someone For Having A Bad Credit Score?

There are a lot of personal things you might want to know about someone you date — relationship history, medical/psychological issues, allergies, political leanings, job prospects, any legal concerns just to name a few — but rarely do we look at a potential spouse and think, “I wonder if their credit score was wrecked by a $10,000 gallbladder surgery bill from when they were 21 and between jobs.” [More]

Ludovic Bertron

ATM Debit Card Data Theft Is Up As Much As 317%

While retailers and payment networks work to cut down on data breaches in stores and online, it looks like fraudsters are relying more on stealing your card info at the ATM, as recent months have seen an unprecedented spike in the number of debit card data thefts from both non-bank and in-bank ATMs. [More]

(Chris Blakeley)

FICO Expands Program To Give Millions Of Consumers Free Access To Credit Scores & Reports

Millions of financially struggling consumers who work with qualified nonprofit counseling agencies now have access to free credit scores and credit reports with the expansion of the FICO Score Open Access program. [More]


Potential FICO Credit Score Changes Could Hurt, Rather Than Help Some Consumers’ Creditworthiness

The Fair Isaac Corporation – better known to consumers as FICO – is on the verge of turning the credit score game on its head with the release of a new credit-scoring approach that would consider consumers’ monthly bills, such as those for utilities and wireless plans, when determining creditworthiness. The change is purportedly intended to help consumers on the low end of the credit spectrum, but some consumer advocates are concerned that lower-income Americans could be the ones most adversely affected. [More]


3 Ways You Could Be Hurting Your Credit Score Even If You Pay Your Bills On Time

If you pay make regular credit card payments that are well above the minimum, and no one is hassling you about outstanding bills you might assume that your credit score is getting healthier or at least maintaining its current level. But there are some mistakes that consumers don’t even realize they’re making that could be hurting their FICO numbers. [More]

(Patrick Fagan)

Citibank Raises Fees For Accounts, But Plans To Offer Free Credit Reports To Some Customers

Citibank is poised to become the second financial institution to provide customers with free credit scores each month. But that’s only if customers stick with the company after its latest fee hike. [More]

Medical Debt Still Stinks, But New Credit Score Change Will Make It Hurt Your Life Less

Medical Debt Still Stinks, But New Credit Score Change Will Make It Hurt Your Life Less

Credit reporting behemoth FICO is making changes in the way it calculates credit scores. And for once, there’s some good news. The changes are expected to make it easier for most Americans to access credit — that is, to borrow money and take out loans — and will punish fewer consumers for incurring some debts that were out of their control. [More]

Discover Giving Free FICO Scores To All Cardholders, But Are They Actually Useful?

Discover Giving Free FICO Scores To All Cardholders, But Are They Actually Useful?

All Americans are, as Consumerist is happy to remind you, entitled to access their own annual credit reports for free. But those reports are just that: reports. They don’t come with credit scores on them. For those, you still have to pay. Unless, that is, you happen to have a Discover card–and maybe, someday, other major credit cards, too. [More]

(me and the sysop)

Young Adults Not Eager To Take On Piles Of Credit Card Debt For Some Reason

Everyone has that one relative who was an adult during the Great Depression and hid boxes of cash all over the house because they didn’t trust banks. Someday, your own descendants might share tales of weird old Aunt Mykayla, who entered the workforce during the Great Recession and refused to get credit cards or even buy a car. [More]


Advocates Call On Senate To Remove Paid Medical Debt From Credit Reports

Medical bills can be outrageously high, and usually there’s a direct relationship between the unexpectedness of a procedure and its cost. Sometimes, no financial planning in the world can forestall unforeseen medical expenses. Yet if any medical debt ends up on your credit report, it can remain there for up to seven years — even after you’ve paid it in full. That’s why a large coalition of advocacy groups have written Senate leadership asking them to consider the Medical Debt Relief Act. [More]

(Alec Peden)

Bill Would Allow Consumers To Get Free Credit Score When Receiving Free Credit Reports

Right now, U.S. consumers can check each of their three credit reports — from TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian — once a year for free through, but getting your actual credit score will probably cost you. Legislation introduced today seeks to remedy this issue. [More]

Knowing your accurate FICO score might be sweeter than chocolates.

This Valentine’s Day, Tell Congress You’d Really Love Access To A Free, Reliable Credit Score

While the three major credit bureaus each allow you to access your credit report once a year at no charge through, getting your actual credit score will likely cost you some money. [More]


Student Loan Debt Is Creating Generation Of High-Risk Borrowers With Low Credit Scores

Lots of people graduate college with minimal credit histories. Repaying student loans was always a dependable way to build that history. But recent, rampant growth in student loan debt in the U.S. could slow that process for an entire age group. [More]


Visa, FICO Warn Card Issuers Of More Sophisticated ATM Crimes

Card skimmers have been around for a while. And while they may have gotten smaller and harder to detect, the people using the skimmed data were generally limited to how much cash they could pull out of victim’s accounts in a day. And so a new breed of criminal has figured out a way to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars from ATMs. [More]

(Plankton 4:20)

One-In-Five Consumers Seeing Significantly Different Credit Scores Than Creditors

Much is made about how much impact your credit scores has on your ability to get a loan, live a happy life and be a good human being. But a new report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau claims that one-in-five consumers are seeing scores that are significantly different from what lenders see. [More]

Surprise! Somehow The Recession Didn’t Do Severe Damage To Our Credit Scores

Surprise! Somehow The Recession Didn’t Do Severe Damage To Our Credit Scores

While plenty of other financial aspects of our lives may have been sent into a downward spiral since the recession hit in 2008, there is a bright spot in all that job loss and economic gloom: On average, our credit scores have stayed steady. But what exactly does that mean? [More]

Freeze Your Credit Report

Freeze Your Credit Report

One way to protect yourself from identity theft is to “freeze” your credit report. This means that no new lines of credit can be opened in your name because lenders are prevented from taking a look at your credit report. This stops identity thieves from opening credit cards under your name and going on spending sprees. It also means extra hassle for you when you want to legitimately open credit. There’s always a tradeoff between security and convenience. Here’s how to do it. [More]