Finance Blog

Stay financially savvy with the Equifax Advisor.

Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter


Thank you for signing up for the FREE Equifax monthly newsletter

In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.

Understand your credit. Help protect your identity.

Equifax Complete™ Premier Plan

  • Know What May Influence Your Credit Score and Be Alerted of Changes
    Credit score monitoring with custom alerts
    Important Disclosure: The Equifax credit score and 3-Bureau credit scores are based on an Equifax credit score model and are not the same scores used by 3rd parties to assess your creditworthiness.¹
  • Help Protect Your Identity
    Automatic fraud alerts encourages lenders to take extra steps to verify your identity²
  • Lock Your Credit
    The ability to lock and unlock your Equifax Credit Report³
Save 75% your first 30 days with the purchase of Equifax Complete™ Premier

$4.95 for the first 30 days, then $19.95 per month thereafter. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.4

¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.

²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.

³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.

4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.

Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.

How to Spot Common Credit Scams

Written by Diane Moogalian on May 12, 2015 in Credit  |   No comments

If you are concerned about your ability to qualify for a loan, or if you’re working on your credit, you may be tempted by offers that, for a price, guarantee help. But be wary: You may be at risk for fraud. While you can take…

How to Spot Common Credit ScamsIf you are concerned about your ability to qualify for a loan, or if you’re working on your credit, you may be tempted by offers that, for a price, guarantee help. But be wary: You may be at risk for fraud. While you can take steps to help better protect your identity, such as monitoring your credit and checking your bank statements, it’s also important to be on the lookout for credit-related scams.

Such scams are only becoming more common: In January 2015, the National Consumers League published its top 10 fraud scams in 2014. Three of the top 10 scams listed were directly or indirectly related to credit scores.

“There are always creative new scams designed to separate consumers from their money, but there are common characteristics among them,” says Bruce McClary, vice president of public relations at the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).

These scams all revolve around fraudsters’ attempts to get your personal information or cash before rendering a so-called service related to your credit, McClary says. Here’s what you should know about four common credit scams:

1. Advance-fee loan scams
In advance-fee loan scams, fraudsters attempt to lure consumers into paying a fee before they are furnished with the full loan amount. When the consumer pays the fee, the scammer makes off with the money without ever providing the loan. Fraudsters often target individuals who have less-than-perfect credit and therefore may have difficulty qualifying for a typical loan.

For example, a scammer might offer to provide a $10,000 loan approval in exchange for a security deposit of $500, sent over wire transfer.

“To someone who is desperate and believes [he or she has] no other choice, the $500 fee seems reasonable,” McClary explains, adding that, in his experience, advance-fee loan scams are the most prevalent of all the credit score scams.

Legitimate lenders often charge application, appraisal, or credit report fees, but these are clearly disclosed, and the fee is usually taken from the total loan amount after the loan is approved. Legitimate lenders won’t pressure customers to wire money for a loan.

2. Refund and recovery scams
In refund and recovery scams, criminals purchase lists of previously scammed consumers and contact those who have already been victimized by credit-repair scammers, phony prize promotions, or fake charities. They offer to help victims recover their stolen money—for an advance fee—without disclosing any additional costs.

“They may also ask for credit card or bank account information, which gives them the ability to commit credit fraud and deplete a victim’s cash reserves,” McClary says.

If a refund scammer contacts you, do not give out any of your information, and be sure to report the incident to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

3. Phishing scams
Fraudsters have been known to impersonate credit reporting agencies (CRAs) by emailing you regarding your credit score and credit report. The email may alert you to an alleged change in your account information or decrease change in your credit score.

Typically, a phishing email provides a link that directs you to a website where you are asked to enter personal information, such as your full name, date of birth, Social Security number (SSN), or credit card information. Phishing scammers may also advertise free credit scores in order to get consumers onto their website.

You should not click on links or download attachments in suspicious emails. Doing so could put you at risk for identity theft.

4. Credit-repair scams
Credit-repair scammers typically target consumers with lower credit scores. They promise a quick and dramatic increase in your credit score, but if you fall for it, you could be unknowingly committing identity theft.

Scam companies like this will provide you with a nine-digit number that looks like an SSN and tell you to apply for credit with that number instead of your SSN. But if you do, you could be using a stolen SSN and may be liable for identity theft.

You should be wary of a company that insists that you pay before it works on your credit or if it tells you not to contact the CRAs. Scammers may also promise you a “new credit identity” or tell you to dispute accurate information in your credit report.

In addition to regularly monitoring your credit, you should avoid giving your personal information to solicitors or strangers. Take the time to research businesses or organizations before making a financial commitment, and remember to report any suspicious businesses or communications that you receive to the FTC.

Diane Moogalian is vice president of operations for Equifax Personal Solutions. Prior to joining Equifax in 2007, Diane held several strategic roles with leading financial services companies. Diane graduated from the University of Richmond with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (Marketing and Economics) and earned a Certificate in International Business from Virginia Commonwealth University.

The information contained in this blog post is designed to generally educate and inform visitors to the Equifax Finance Blog. The blog posts do not give, and should not be assumed to provide, personalized tax, investment, real estate, legal, retirement, credit, personal financial, or other professional advice. Before making any financial decision, you should always consult with the appropriate professionals who can explain your options, rights, and legal responsibilities, and advise you on any tax, legal, credit, or business implications that may result from those decisions. The views and opinions expressed by the authors of blog posts are their own views and may not be the views or opinions of Equifax, Inc. and/or its affiliates.

No comments yet

Leave a Comment

Name :

Commenting guidelines

We welcome your interest and participation on this forum, but be aware that comments will be published at Equifax's sole discretion. Please don't use this blog to submit questions or concerns about your Equifax credit report or raise customer service issues. Instead, you should contact Equifax directly for all such matters and any attempts to do so in this forum will be promptly re-directed.

Some other factors to consider when commenting:
  1. Registration and privacy. While no registration is required to visit our forum, participants wishing to post a message must register by creating an account. All personal information provided by forum members incident to registration is governed by our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.
  2. All comments are anonymous. We'll delete your name, e-mail address, and any other identifying information, including details about your investments.
  3. We can't post or respond to every comment - As much as we'd like to, we can't post every comment, nor can we guarantee that we will respond to each individual message. All questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or similar customer service issues should be handled by contacting Equifax directly.
  4. Don't offer specific legal, tax or financial advice. All of the materials on this Site are for information, education, and noncommercial purposes only and this forum is not intended as a means of expressing views or ideas regarding any specific legal, tax, or investment advice. While offering general rules of thumb is both permitted and encouraged, recommending specific ideas or strategies regarding investments, taxes, and related matters is prohibited.
  5. Credit Repair. This blog is not intended as a venue for the discussion or exchange of ideas regarding credit repair or other strategies intended to assist visitors and community members improve or otherwise modify their credit histories, ratings or scores.
  6. Stay on topic. Your comment should be concise and pertain to the specific post in question.
  7. Be respectful of the community. The use of profanity, offensive language, spam, and personal attacks will not be tolerated and egregious or repeat offenders will be banned from future participation. We encourage disagreement and healthy debate, but please refrain from personal attacks on our WordPresss and contributors.
  8. Finally: Participation in this forum may be terminated by Equifax immediately and without notice for failure to comply with any guidelines or Terms of Use. As such, you should familiarize yourself with all pertinent requirements prior to submitting any response through the blog or otherwise. All opinions expressed in this forum are solely those of the individual submitting the comment, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.

Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.

Credit Archive