The vast majority of credit reports in the United States have inaccuracies in them. Of those inaccuracies, about 60% are damaging enough to depress one’s credit score. There are many ways that your credit report can get damaged even though you have always been timely with all of your payments. Here are the most common ways:
1. Mismerge occurs when two people have the same name and the information for one of those persons is placed on to the credit report of the other person. Are you John Smith? Well so is he except he does not pay his bills on time and you get penalized for that.
2. Furnisher errors occur when a creditor reports a payment that it had received timely from you, as a late payment. A single payment recorded as 30 days late can plummet an otherwise stellar credit score by 30-50 points. Another kind of furnisher error is when a creditor fails to update debts that were discharged in bankruptcy.
3. Public records such as judgments and liens can pose problems to persons who have fairly common names. This is much like the Mismerge type of error except it involves public records instead of creditor trade lines.
4. Credit Reporting Agencies may cause errors in retrieving information about you. For example a creditor asks for information on John Smith who lives in Detroit and the credit reporting agency may deliver information about John Smith who lives in Boise, Idaho.
5. Identity Theft. We have dedicated an entire section of our website to educate you about identity theft. This is one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States.