Update 7/27/20: Ontime Netflix payments can now be added to Experian Boost.
Original post: Consumer reporting agency Experian has launched something called ‘Experian Boost‘. Experian boost allows consumers to add their utility and telecom bills to their credit report, to do so you need to give Experian access to your online bank account. If these bills have been paid on time then your score will increase. One nice thing about Experian Boost is that after adding access your FICO score is updated in real time.
Experian Boost will officially launch in early 2019, but you can register now for early access. You have to sign up for a free Experian membership to be eligible (credit card is not required). Experian states that according to their research 75% of consumers with a FICO score below 680 saw an immediate improvement and 10% of consumers who previously had a ‘thin credit file’ (unable to generate a credit score) became scoreable after using Experian boost.
The downside to Experian boost is that you need to provide Experian with additional data and access to your online accounts. It isn’t clear how that access is provided, is Experian handling that directly or are they using a known third party (similar to the access provided to Mint and other fintech companies). Given that competitor Equifax had data breached consumers have a right to be concerned over handling over this information. A better solution would be allow telecom and utility provides the ability to furnish this data, they would have an incentive to do so as it would mean consumers were more likely to pay bills on time.