Some folks in Missouri were recently indicted for perpetrating credit history fraud and buying property illegally, to the tune of about three million dollars. Credit history fraud is a new crime that is reported growing in popularity. But what is it?

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These crooks accomplished their fraud by manipulating the credit reporting system. One alleged criminal, a real estate agent, obtained false Social Security numbers. Then his accomplices set up phony companies and reported positive credit information to the credit bureaus. The information was then added to the credit reports of the phony people, enhancing their scores and allowing them to be approved for mortgages that they otherwise wouldn't have qualified for. Understand that these people have not yet gone to trial and so may not be found guilty.

Is There a Way to Enhance Your Credit Legally?

Sure there is. After all, the only reason this alleged fraud was illegal was that there were false Social Security numbers involved, and that the positive credit history reported was false. But people can legally get the same result using their own real Social Security numbers.

You can add a positive credit history by using your existing credit for small purchases and paying on time every month. Set up automatic bill pay if you have problems with this. You can benefit from someone else's longer positive history by "piggy-backing" with their permission on their good accounts. Just have them add you as an authorized user to their accounts. You don't use the credit ever, and you get the benefit of their credit experience.

When you have a few months of good history with your creditors, ask for credit line increases. This gives you more available credit. Don't use it. By having more credit available, and not using it, your credit utilization ratio drops, which raises your score. And utilization is thirty percent of your credit grade, so changes here really affect your credit report.

You don't have to break the law to get a better credit score. Just be smart and you can unload your bad credit and get a mortgage. Want to see what mortgage you qualify for now? Fill out the form on this site and find out if there is a bad credit lender with a mortgage for you.