Recently, Experian (“the leading global information services company”*) announced that it and CreditCards.com “will co-host a live, interactive, online town-hall discussion of credit reporting and scoring.” CreditCards.com made the same announcement, replete with countdown clock to the exciting event.
Experian’s newfound public outreach/reach-out for goodwill follows the drubbing it took at the hands of Congress and the FTC regarding the FreeCreditReport.com debacle. Among other adventures, Chairman John Peace and Experian have traveled the the viral video route recently. There’s a fab, telegenic, “STYLISH, SMART, & SASSY” (click “HOSTING REEL” for a demo if you’re interested), newly-minted credit history expert and a bevy of B-list stars. It’s all packaged up with cutesy, sprightly and playful plucking strings to indicate when it is time to laugh (and you will need it), similar to scenes on Wisteria Lane and at Seattle Grace.
CreditCards.com knows Enough to be Dangerous. They would have you believe that credit score factors include “employment, income” (FICO scores do not consider income and employment), and even “debt to income ratio.” And, speaking of experts and employment, the consumer reporting agencies do not provide credit scores for employment purposes. But today, while a battle rages in statehouses from coast-to-coast, one of the CreditCards.com’s “experts” wrote that employers use credit scores. It wouldn’t be the first time that that happened. And, they are in good company.
Take what these two tell you with a grain of salt. And if you participate in their forum, be sure to ask about your AWOL Experian FICO score, and what they are talking about with the line: “Credit scoring helps potential lenders, landlords, and employers quickly gauge an applicant’s credit history.”