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Piggyback Credit Targeted

Fair Isaac announces modification to FICO score

June 5, 2007

By MortgageDaily.com staff


The developer of the FICO score has taken steps to ensure credit scores are not artificially enhanced using borrowed credit.

Fair Isaac Corp. announced today it will modify the formula for its FICO credit score.

The move came as a result of a new type of credit repair service that sells credit card histories to credit applicants -- boosting their score in the process, the company said. The move is deceptive and deliberately misrepresent credit histories to mortgage lenders.

"An authorized user is a person permitted by a credit account holder to use an account, typically a family member who is managing credit for the first time," the announcement said. "Used legitimately, authorized user account information has helped both lenders and consumers by enabling lenders to use FICO scores when making credit decisions for consumers who are starting to establish a credit history."

The change enables the newest FICO model to ignore authorized user accounts, Fair Isaac said. The updated version, FICO 08, is expected to be made available in September and will keep the same scoring range, reason codes and related model parameters from previous FICO formulas.

Moody's Investors Service is making some of its own changes to credit analysis.

The New York-based ratings agency announced today it would refine its rating methodology on subprime loans -- using data already being provided by originators.

Among areas to be considered now are credit report data, including number of open trade lines, limits on trade lines and the age of the oldest trade line, Moody's said. Also factored in will be total collection debt, number of months since bankruptcy or foreclosure and income information.


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