Who Owns Free Credit Report.com?

by Kevin on March 31, 2008

After listening to the annoyingly catchy commercials and radio jingles, I began to wonder if it was a stand alone company. I won’t link to the website because it offers a ‘service’ that you can get for free.

However, if you visit the About page, you quickly learn that this is not a stand alone company. The website is owned by a company that was setup by Experian. Experian is one of the credit bureaus.

When you think about it, it’s a genius play. The US government tells the credit bureaus they have to allow consumers access to one credit report per year. To offset the cost of this (and to make additional profit), Experian sets up a for-profit website that offers essentially the same service for a monthly charge. Sure, there may be three people in the United States that can honestly need to spend $15 per month to have consistent access to their reports. The average consumer, not so much.

On top of that, Experian’s commercials for the website, and obviously the name of the website, make it seem like a free service. That seems like a scam to me. It isn’t a free service. The first month is free, then those pesky monthly payments begin.

This also explains how a single website could run a bunch of expensive radio and TV commercials. I can’t attest to the profitability of that company within Experian, but I’m guessing there are a lot of people out there that are signed up and don’t even know it. So don’t use free credit report.com. Instead, use the actual free service from Annual Credit Report.com. You can also check out Master Your Card’s 5 steps to a DIY “Life Lock”.

{ 3 comments }

Eric March 31, 2008 at 11:19 am

I actually have credit monitoring in place through TransUnion as I’m planning a refinance soon and have the need to speak intelligently about my average FICO between all 3 agencies. The only way to do that effectively is to have access every day to updated scores. I plan on canceling soon, but it’s really handy and gives me peace of mind.

James October 31, 2011 at 6:34 pm

In my humble opinion they severly fine or jail the people over at Experian.. Not only are they next to impossible to get on the phone but then they tell me that I cannot fix the incorrect address info or the birth date that is off by 10 years… I must fax in my License for that… Oh by the way this is all a ploy for you to enter there credit report sales funnel… I don’t believe the American people would like to know that this company with a tremendous responsibility is screwing around with there information like that… When addresses and incorrect work places with misspellings show up it can look negatively on you… #1 If you call in and claim your personal info is incorrect they should change it… #2 We need regulatory agencies following these people and ensuring our data is correct … #3 Why does every site on the planet have a clear contact method… Try to get through to a person at experian… you have to jump through so many hoops it is next to impossible… UNLESS ” you buy your credit report for $7.99 …” The loss leader price … These folks are incredible … P.S. in case your wondering my middle score is 729… Apparently I rank higher that 79.89% of Americans … Yet do you think Citi would extend a few thousand… Yes when your Credit score is rated excellent yet you can’t get a lousy few grand America is in terrible shape… I hope this rant goes far and wide on the internet cause these folks need to be way more transparent to the American public… It should be a by partisan not-for-profit under or over the table … they need an FCC rep at every branch … twisted… P.S. website teaches how to fix your own garage door…

bodmor1 September 3, 2012 at 8:12 am

I had a credit freeze on my reports due to to security leak on my credit report. I paid a fees to all 3 credit agencies.? what a scam that they got going .The 3 credit report ,Euifax, Experian,TransUnion.Did any you severed in the military,next time look ,listen. and watch,because you are giving your personal information to Ism an and the Tally band in Pakistan on the border of India,good luck if you believe your credit file is save , you must think Santa Claus had a green beard.

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