When FICO announced that they planned to stop considering authorized user accounts in their credit scoring models, it seemed like we’d seen the last of the piggybacking industry. Many of these credit repair companies closed shop pretty fast, sites were pulled down across the web.
The FICO change was, in fact, designed specifically to put piggybackers out of business. Piggybacking is the practice of selling consumers with bad credit access to healthy, established credit card accounts. Because of a loophole in the credit system, someone with bad credit could buy into an account and see their credit increase fairly dramatically.
Unfortunately, millions of innocent consumers who had legitimately opened authorized user accounts will also be damaged by this FICO change when it starts in September. And FICO is not the only one paying attention to piggybackers. TransUnion’s mortgage scoring division developed a way to "sniff" out piggybacked accounts and VantageScores have always ignored authorized user accounts.
However, it looks like there are a couple piggybackers who aren’t ready to back down. In a press release today called "Credit Piggybacking Is Unsuccessfully Attacked," one piggybacking company touted that they were not being shut down by these changes to the credit industry:
Using a Robin Hood-like mentality, [company name redacted] is borrowing from
the rich and lending to the poor and credit agencies are on a mission to
destroy the tactic.
Credit repair has never seemed so noble! According to the release, the piggybacking company is continuing to sell their $600+ services with the rationale that the credit industry changes will take a while to implement. No matter that FICO, the largest credit scoring company in the US, is rolling out the change next month. And don’t mind the fact that any improvements to your score gained through an authorized user account will be wiped out when the changes are implemented.
Do me a favor, don’t sign up for a piggybacking service. Save your $600 and open a secured credit card in your own name. Establish your credit the right way and you won’t have to worry about it in the future. Share your feedback in the comments section below!
Emily Davidson – Credit.com‘s Communication Director and former TransUnion credit expert. Emily writes about credit reports, credit scores, loans and personal finance as the CreditBloggers.com moderator.