A credit report is a record of your financial history, including your use of credit, your income, where you’ve lived, where you’ve worked, bankruptcies, defaults, foreclosures, and much more. It also contains your Social Security number and the account numbers for your credit cards, bank accounts, brokerage accounts, and mortgages. Sometimes, mistakes creep in, and it’s up to you to correct them.
In the U.S., the Big Three credit reporting agencies (CRAs) — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — compile credit reports and distribute them to lenders, creditors, landlords, employers, and others who need to assess your creditworthiness. The reports also form the basis of your credit scores which encapsulate your creditworthiness in a single number – actually, three numbers, one from each CRA.