Consumer News: FICO studies show banks lagging on ID methods, Americans' credit scores increasing

Deanna Dewberry
Updated: October 20, 2020 06:01 PM
Created: October 20, 2020 05:15 PM

FICO: Banks are lagging in online ID verification tools

In consumer news, online banking and your identity. I’m sharing an experience that may have happened to many of you.

One March morning I took a look at my checking account online and discovered $1,400 dollars had disappeared and the "payment" had gone to someone named Jasmine. Immediately my face got hot. My heart was racing, and I was trying to remain calm. I'd been hacked. I bank at a huge global institution, so I called their security department which put a fraud lock on my account. But then, he told me I would need to go into a branch with two forms of ID to clear up the matter and get my money back.

My experience is not unique. Since the pandemic, more of us are banking by using that little computer in our hands, our cell phones. But banks have not caught up.  

FICO, the same company that came up with the formula to tabulate your credit score, commissioned a study

It found that more than half of banks still require you to visit a branch or post documents to verify your identity. And only 16% of banks in North America use fully-integrated, real-time detection tools like character detection and facial recognition, better tools to keep your money safe.

Americans' credit scores improve

And speaking of FICO, as the economy tanked, our credit scores have hit an all-time high.

According to FICO, American's average score rose to 711 in July up from 708 in April. Analysts on CNBC believe that because we all got stimulus checks and consumers were allowed to defer student loans, mortgage and car payments, we paid down our credit debt instead.

In fact, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, we saw a historic drop in credit card debt this spring and summer. 

And we know that paying off credit card debt will increase your credit score. CNBC has a wealth of information on increasing your credit score. Click here for those tips.

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