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Providian's Credit Score? Should I be concerned?


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Hi all!

I have had some very odd things going on with my Providian credit score vs. what TransUnion says my score is. I don't understand the HUGE differences. I keep contacting Providian and they keep telling me to contact TransUnion and give me the standard "here are the things that can have an effect on your score" business. It's like they don't even read my question! Grrrrr. For instance, a few months ago my new "Providian" score came out - they say it is fromTransUnion. Then later I check my TransUnion report and score and it is WAY higher - like 40 points! The next month my Providian score is lower again so I check TransUnion and it is higher again!

Has anyone else seen this? I can't get an answer from Providian and I assume the score direct from TransUnion is more likely to be correct. It concerns me though. Should I be concernec?

Thanks for the help!

Lainee

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Guest jeeptravel

Hi Lainee. Forgive me if my post here sounds patronizing . . .

What I understand you to ask is this:

"Why is the credit monitoring score on the Providian service different from Transunion."

This might be an easy question to answer, let me try.

Your credit score is generated for potential lenders (including Providian) by three major CRA's: Transunion, Experian, and Equifax.

Each of the 3 generates a score based on "hidden" software. Some use FICO, others Beacon. At any rate, these scores are the true ones that the lenders see; NOT THE SCORE of Providian's credit monitoring service.

Having said that, there are several credit monitoring services out there. PG (Privacy Guard) Credit Keeper and others. These use another software to produce a score we call a FAKO score. It is based on the same stuff a real FICO is, but it may vary +/- 100 points from the actual FICO score.

You can purchase your true FICO score at any time from any of the three bureaus or at myfico.com. This will be the most accurate score the lenders will see. The FAKO can usually be a safe bet as well, but you are finding out that isn't always the case.

I hope that helps. Again, I'm sorry if I missed the point of your question. I hope I did not.

JT

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Hi JT!

I just want to re-state what you said to make sure I got it. Hope you don't mind. :D

So, the deal is that even though Providian provides a "credit score" that they say is based on TransUnion, it can be totally different from the score I get based on TransUnion from MyFico? Is that right?

You're pretty smart on all this stuff.....is this the "PG" thing I keep hearing about? I've done a search to try to understand it, but I still don't get it.

Thanks for your help!!! This place is wonderful!

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Guest jeeptravel

Yeah, you got it. Providian pulls Transunion, but use a FAKO method to get the score.

Here's the services I alluded to (I use credit keeper and I love it)

www.myfico.com (produces real scores)

Do a search for discount codes on this forum

www.mycreditkeeper.com (produces FAKO)

www.privacyguard.com (FAKO)

You'll figure it out after a while, it's complex but simple once you get it.

Good luck!

JT

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Hey all!

Okay, I just found out the weirdest thing. Providian cliams that their scores are FICO - they even have the FairIssac trademark. Now I am REALLY confused. They just posted a score for me that is 20 points less than TransUnion gave me just a week ago and nohting bad has happened in the last week.

I'm so confused!

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Guest jeeptravel

The last I checked, Transunion didn't use the Fair Isaac model (FICO) to calculate their score product. It was a model called: "Empirica."

There are many trademark "formulas" that the bureaus use. Another is called the "Beacon" model. While your report is the same when Providian rates it as when Transunion rates it, the score will vary depending on how they numerically weigh different items on your report.

Don't panic! Scores vary from model to model. I have heard the ratio can be +/- 100 points!

If they are mostly mid 600's and up, you don't have much to worry about. And of course, 700 anything is something to chicken dance about.

Hope that helps

JT

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