The best credit card enhancement to come down the pike since rewards programs is furnishing updated credit scores to cardholders.
FICO® reports its Score Open Access program has topped 200 million credit accounts in the U.S. The program enables over 100 financial institutions to provide FICO® Scores, for free, to existing customers. More than a billion FICO® Scores are given to consumers each year through the program.
A substantial portion of the 532 million U.S. credit card accounts branded with Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover now offer the complimentary scores. Additionally, big retail credit cards like Walmart, via Synchrony, likewise offer the free enhancement.
While credit scores can vary significantly, by 100+ points, dependent upon credit bureau information utilized for the score, the free scores can show trends and provide the customer with a good ballpark on their creditworthiness.
The FICO® Score is the standard measure of U.S. consumer credit risk, and used in more than 90% of consumer lending decisions in the U.S. and in more than 25 countries. More than 10 billion FICO Scores are purchased in the United States each year by lenders for their risk management decisions.
FICO® says the program allows millions of consumers to see the exact same FICO® Scores used by their lenders for risk management decisions. This access helps consumers better understand their financial health and how lenders view their credit readiness.
In addition, FICO® Score Open Access provides consumers with regularly updated FICO® Scores. These are the actual scores the lenders are using to manage their consumer accounts. The scores are accompanied by the most important factors affecting the score. Participating institutions are delivering the scores to consumers via a variety of channels, including online banking websites, mobile applications and paper statements.
U.S. financial institutions of all sizes are offering the FICO® Score Open Access program to their customers as a way to empower them to better understand their financial health.
Participants include credit card issuers, mortgage servicers, auto lenders, and student loan providers. Participating lenders range from the country’s largest banks and lenders to dozens of credit unions and startups.
Through its myFICO® service and the FICO® Score Open Access program, FICO helps millions of American consumers understand their credit health.