A Texas-based credit score business has reached a $22 million settlement agreement in a national case filed by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
The lawsuit claims ScoreSense marketed its credit monitoring services in a deceptive manner. ScoreSense is owned by One Technologies, which also operated MyCreditHealth.
Consumers will receive $21.9 million as part of the settlement, with the remaining amount going to the state governments in Ohio and Illinois, and the FTC.
The suit alleges that the credit score business would advertise on search engines, such as Google and Bing, for a free credit report. Some of its ads stated that consumers could receive free credit scores. Consumers didn't realize they actually were signing up for a monitoring program that would cost them around $30 a month.
“Consumers thought they were signing up to get a free credit score but really were enrolling in a service costing $29.95 a month,” DeWine said. “We are pleased to be part of this settlement, which provides substantial relief for consumers. Not only will the business pay millions to reimburse consumers, it also will significantly change the way it markets its services.”
Nearly 210,000 consumers made complaints about the company to banks, law enforcement agencies, credit card companies and the Better Business Bureau.