When consumers apply for new loans, request a store credit card, or sign up for
a cellphone, the companies they do business with may delve more deeply into
their credit history than they used to. Following the Great Recession, more
lenders are sifting through consumers' personal financial information in ways
they have never done before, according to industry experts and consumer groups.
Additionally, they are more likely to rely on information other than just a
traditional credit score. Data companies are now collecting information relevant
to consumers' job history, income, and net worth -- which lenders can use to
flag anyone it considers a credit risk. Consumer groups acknowledge that lenders
should take greater care in their lending practices but worry that incorrect
conclusions could actually impede some creditworthy borrowers when they attempt
to get loans.