Banks Embrace FICO Score Open Access Program

by Michael Misasi 0

Citibank will be making FICO scores available to Citi Cardcustomers. Beginning in January 2015, consumers that have a Citi-branded card(not a private label card) will be able to access their FICO score online. Theannouncement was made in tandem with President Obama’s signing of an executiveorder “Safeguarding Consumers Financial Security” (available here.)Earlier this year, Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer FinancialProtection Bureau, also expressed supportfor the program.

Citi will join fellow credit card issuers Discover andBarclaycard as participants in the FICO Score Open Access program. Chase andBank of America are also considering the program, according to a report on Cleveland.com.

In November 2013, FICO launched the FICO Score Open Accessprogram which allows lenders, including credit card issuers, to provideconsumers with access to their FICO score along with educational materials freeof charge. One of the program’s benefits is that consumers will be able toaccess the same score that lenders are using to make underwriting decisions.There are a number of credit scores available to consumers, but they can besignificantly different that the scores that banks use.

From the 2013 pressrelease:

“In 2012 approximately 10 billionFICO Scores were bought by lenders for risk management purposes and we areprepared to allow all of them to be shared with bank customers without anyadditional score fee charged by FICO to lenders.”

Discover is using FICO scores based on TransUnion reports,while Citi will be using FICO scores based on Equifax reports. It is not clearif Citi will also make the scores available on paper statements or in its mobileapp, which FICO also supports.


Overview by Michael Misasi, Analyst, Credit Advisory Service for Mercator Advisory Group

Read full story at Cleveland.com