It is the season of scams so it is no surprise that we take everything with a pinch of salt especially so if the promise is to get something free. In September 2016, Reserve Bank of India made it mandatory for the credit agencies to provide a free credit report to individuals once in a calendar year. There are four credit agencies in India so you can get four credit reports in a year which makes it one in each quarter. Each credit bureau has a different process giving you a free credit report when asked, so let us go through each agency’s process and understand if free credit score is a reality or a scam?
How to Get Free Credit Score From Various Agencies?
Checking your credit report from time to time is recommended as it lets you assess your credit health. Since there are few ways to improve credit score fast, it’s better to be prepared in case you need credit and stay credit healthy. With scores available now without you having to pay anything now it’s easier to access your credit score without having to pay anything.
Below we discuss in brief how you can get (if at all) free credit score from various credit agencies:
Experian: For those looking for a free credit report from Experian, you need to follow the link that lets you access your free credit score. Few basic details like name, Permanent Account Number, email Id, date of birth need to be entered for you to get the report. You will be sent a voucher which is to be used when you are taken to the payment page instead of making an actual payment. This voucher is mailed to you within 48 hours of you making the request for a free score. After you answer a few questions you would be sent the report within three to five days.
Equifax: They provide the free report only after you download a mobile application which is available for both Android and IOS phones. You need to provide basic KYC details along with you Aadhaar Number. The applicant is provided a temporary PIN that is used to authenticate themselves and then they can login after 24 hours. After answering a few questions about your credit history the report is sent to you. If you do not have a smart phone then there is a separate process for getting the free report. Those without smart phones need to send scanned documents along with an application to the given email id , documents required for this include address. Getting the report through the application make take two days, if doing it through the email route it make take longer time.
CRIF High Mark: They have a link on their homepage for getting a free credit report. Those desirous of getting a free credit report need to fill in some information to authenticate themselves. Information required here is more derailed as compared to other agencies. Once the application form is filled and the customer information is authenticated they can download the report. The report is generally available within 48 hours.
CIBIL TransUnion: Initially CIBIL had the option of submitting only a physical paper based request but now both options of getting it online or physically are available. For getting it online you need to fill in the required information after following the link that is provided for getting a free score. Applicants need to authenticate themselves before they can download the report. If all the steps are completed successfully the report can be accessed within a couple of minutes. For those who choose to send the documents physically, it may take them seven working days to get the login details. Once these details are received the applicant can login to the site and can access their report.
So all in all getting a free score is not a scam. In some cases it may be time consuming or the applicant may find the process cumbersome but usually they can access the free score even if it takes time and some effort.