There are many companies
out there that claim they can get you a high credit score or repair your credit report quickly for a fee.
Unfortunately, many of these companies are scam artists trying to steal your
money. Find out how to spot a scam so you can protect your money and your
Signs that a credit repair company is trying to
pull a scam:
It promises to remove negative information from
your credit report. FACT: No one can legally remove negative
information from a credit report that is accurate and must remain on your
report for a set amount of years; most information stays on your report for
seven years while bankruptcy information can remain for ten years. You
can remove credit report errors by following certain steps yourself for FREE.
It requests an upfront fee before any type of
credit repair is performed. A legitimate company will not demand
payment before the service is provided. Remember that improving your
credit can be done, but it takes time. Learn tips to improve your credit score
It offers to create a new credit report for you
with different identification (such as another Social Security number or
business tax ID number). FACT: This is illegal and you
should report the fraud to the Federal
Trade Commission (FTC) immediately.
It asks you to sign blank forms and provide
personal information so the company can act on your behalf to help with credit
problems. NEVER sign blank paperwork.
NEVER give out
personal information without knowing the reason and with whom you are
dealing. Once someone gets your personal information, you may be in
danger of identity
It tells you it can boost your credit score by
piggybacking on someone else's credit. Some credit repair
companies offer consumers a "piggybacking" opportunity. Consumer A (good
credit) adds Consumer B (bad credit) as an authorized user on Consumer A's
credit card account for a fee. Consumer A maintains good credit, which
is reflected in Consumer A's and Consumer B's credit reports. (Consumer
B is piggybacking on Consumer A's good credit history.) This is a
dangerous and costly process as personal information is exchanged.
Credit reporting agencies are aware of these piggyback schemes and are no
longer attributing Consumer A's good credit to Consumer B's credit report and
It sent you an offer through e-mail that you did
not request. Many scam artists send out "official looking"
e-mails in hopes that you will respond. If you did not request
information to be sent, do not deal with the company.
There are no
overnight solutions to fix your credit history. Consider speaking with
a credit counselor to find ways to repair
your credit if you are having trouble managing your debt.