ASK KIM


Missing Credit Information

Kimberly Lankford

Kim Lankford helps a reader repair her credit score after she discovered her credit report was missing years of her credit history.



When TransUnion recently pulled my credit report, it showed very old personal information and gave me a credit score of zero. I am 48, have an active credit history, and my other credit reports were accurate. When I called TransUnion, I was told I'd have to contact all my creditors and have them report the information to TransUnion. How can I fix this situation?

You were misinformed. The information missing from your report was from major banks, including Citibank and Bank of America, so it should have been included. "This was not an optimal customer-service experience," Steven Katz of TransUnion's TrueCredit.com, admitted to us.

When Katz and his colleagues looked into your records, they discovered a case of mistaken identity. Your full first name is Lucinda, which you used when applying for your oldest credit cards. But for the past several years, you've been using the name Cindy, and those cards weren't showing up in your records.

As soon as TransUnion figured out the problem, the credit bureau added the new information and sent out a seven-page credit report that included your credit-card history for the past ten years.

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We get a lot of questions from people whose credit reports are missing key pieces of information. That's why it's important to order a free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus once a year through AnnualCreditReport.com.

If information is missing, check your statements to see whether the card issuer is using a different version of your name. If you change your name after getting married, contact all of your lenders -- even issuers of old cards you may not have used in a while. And be as persistent as Cindy.

Got a question? Ask Kim at askkim@kiplinger.com.




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