Credit Report Monitoring
Credit reporting and monitoring is an aspect of credit management that oftentimes doesn't get the consideration it deserves. Take a moment to think about the following:
Incorrect (and possibly negative) information can be added to your credit records at any time. And since the three credit reporting bureaus — TransUnion, Experian and Equifax — don't share information, you need to keep track of what's going on with all three.
Credit Reporting Ignorance Is Not Bliss
Naturally, you don't want potential lenders, employers, landlords and others to see credit information that's wrong. And let's not forget that your credit score is based on information from your credit report.
The sooner you find and fix errors, generally the easier it will be to resolve them. The same goes for identity theft — the sooner you detect that you've been a victim of identity theft or fraud, generally the easier it will be to repair any damage to your credit and your good name.
Credit Reporting Basics
The good news is that staying on top of your credit information has become much easier. Just follow these simple steps and you'll be happily informed of the very latest activity to your credit files:
- Order your Credit Report. The three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) are required to provide all U.S. citizens with an annual free credit report upon request. The federal government established AnnualCreditReport.com, to provide consumers with a safe, secure site through which they can order their free online credit reports. However, note that these sides only provide free credit reports, not free scores.
- Take a close look at your Credit Report. Only you can find and fix problems in your credit report, so it's critical that you carefully check each section of your report, make note of outdated or incorrect information and fix or dispute what you can.
- Sign up for credit monitoring. Once you've given your credit records a thorough once-over, it's easy to stay on top of your credit information through a 3-in-1 Credit Monitoring Service. Your monitoring service will notify you of new activity to your credit records with all three credit reporting bureaus and will alert you to potential signs of identity theft or fraud.
While it's true that what you don't know about credit reporting can hurt you, the good news is that products and services, like the 3-in-1 Credit Report and 3-in-1 Credit Monitoring, make it easier than ever to stay on top of credit reporting.