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Topics addressed on February 2, 2010:
Inquiries from existing creditors and for preapproved offers
There is a string of inquiries made by credit card companies on my report. I did not authorize these. How can I get the credit card companies to cease and desist? How do we remove these from our report?
I suspect the inquiries to which you refer are the result of preapproved credit offers. If so, it typically means you are an attractive, potential customer and that is a good thing! Such inquiries have no effect on credit scores, so you need not worry about them from that perspective.
Creditors with which you have an existing relationship also can review your credit history as part of their account review process. They do so for a number of reasons. Determining whether to increase or decrease your credit limit or to reduce your interest rate are just two examples.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) allows accessing your report for account review purposes, so there isn’t anything you can do to prevent it other than close the accounts.
If the inquiries are the result of lenders wishing to make preapproved credit offers, the FCRA allows lenders to review credit reports to determine whether an individual meets the criteria to extend a firm offer of credit. If you do meet their criteria, you will receive an offer in the mail. It is not uncommon to see a fairly large number of inquiries for preapproved offers, especially if you have a strong credit history.
These inquires are also shown only to you, so do not impact credit scores or lending decisions.
You can opt out of receiving preapproved credit offers. To learn more about preapproved offers see the “Preapproved Credit: What you should know” section on Experian’s Web site.
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- The "Ask Experian" team