Today I noticed that Experian advertised $1 credit reports and scores for a LIMITED TIME.
View the screen shot of the Experian front page with the TOTALLY FALSE advertisement.
$1 for a credit report sounds like a great deal!
However, it’s just another credit bureau SCAM.
I clicked to order my “$ 1” report and filled out my personal info:
Screen shot — still looks great!
The next screen revealed the ugly truth:
There is NO $1 credit report, but you’re signing up for a $14.95 MONTHLY SUBSCRIPTION — unless you cancel within 7 days.
How hard is it to cancel?
VERY HARD. I’ve had many clients complain that they were put on hold for a long time, they were disconnected, etc.
But that’s not the only scam, there’s MORE:
The reports are actually provided by Experian-owned ConsumerInfo.com. The reports they provide are INCOMPLETE and contain LESS than half the data on the “real” Experian report.
In fact, they don’t even contain the EXPERIAN REPORT NUMBER — required to dispute by telephone and to get FREE reports at its site for 90 days.
Yup, that’s no typo. Once you have a report number, you can get your almost complete Experian disclosure for 90 days at its site. Just click on the link to “Review Report Again” on the bottom of their front page.
The Experian report number is on all investigation results. And you can also get it by PRETENDING to want to dispute online if you actually sign up for this scam.
So if you don’t already have an Experian report number (no older than 90 days) — and you don’t mind going through the hassle of canceling — sign up, get your free report, pretend to want to dispute online, get the “real” Experian report with the report number and then cancel right away.
Ignore the Experian credit scores.
They are NOT the scores most lenders are using — get your FICO scores if you NEED scores.
You can’t get your Experian FICO scores at myFICO.com anymore because they make even less sense than the Trans Union and Equifax scores. The Experian credit reporting data is so flawed by DESIGN and they’d have to completely change their data fields — more on that another time.
Just IGNORE all Experian scores unless you get a copy of your mortgage credit report.
Why is Experian advertising this “limited time” offer?
It might have to do with new FTC regulations regarding these scams. I haven’t read through the 22 pages of small print yet, but noticed extensive discussion of the “free” credit reports and the many consumer complaints. The regulations will be effective 4/2/10 and I hope to soon find the time to go through this document.