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Who Can Access Your Credit Report

11/18/2011 06:15 PM ET

Who Can Access Your Credit Report - There are companies who can access your report for different reasons. Most of them need your permission, such as when you apply for a credit card, before they have access to it. It’s important to review your personal information at least once per year.

Lenders will want to review your history before determining the interest rate of your loan. If you shows that you have a strong record of paying back your debts on time, lenders will be more willing to offer you low interest rates. There are other companies who can access your credit report.

Whenever you apply for a new credit card, the company can review your report before extending credit. Often, those “pre-approved” letters you get in the mail aren’t true offers, but they might offer you an 8.9% APR. The interest rate may also change during the formal card application process.

A utility company may want to check your credit before turning on your water, electricity, gas, or cable. They do this by determining your initial utility deposit. Many cell phone companies will do the same. In fact, they will review your history before making a decision to enroll you in certain monthly plans.

Employers may want to review your credit report before hiring you, especially if you are a financial executive. Consenting to a background check gives an employer permission. Landlords have the legal right to review it as well. Insurers also use credit reports when underwriting an insurance policy.

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