What Is Credit Monitoring?

Posted on September 20, 2022

A young woman takes time to review her credit standings online after learning more about credit monitoring.

Partners Financial FCU offers premium checking account members access to 3-bureau credit monitoring services. Many financial experts recommend you sign up for credit monitoring services, especially if you are considering a major purchase such as a house or car.

But what is credit monitoring? Let’s take a look at how credit monitoring works, why it is important, how much it costs, and how you can sign up for it.

What Is Credit?

Before you learn about monitoring credit, let’s learn more about credit in general.

Credit is any money you borrow, whether in the form of a car or student loan, a mortgage, or money spent on a credit card. Lenders track how you repay money you borrow to determine your creditworthiness — how likely you are to repay your debts on time.

To do this, they rely on information from credit bureaus that collect data on how much money you borrow and how you pay it off. This ever-increasing record is called your credit history and each credit bureau uses it to assign you a credit score.

Your credit score plays a major role in determining how much lenders will allow you to borrow, the interest rate you will be charged, and how soon you will be required to repay your loan. As you can imagine, the accuracy of your credit history is critical to your ability to borrow money for anything from a credit card to a car to a home for your family.

What Is Credit Monitoring?

While you can check your credit score at any time online for free, credit bureaus are required by law to provide you with a free copy of your full credit report once a year. You will usually be charged for additional access to your information, which is updated every 30 days.

Credit monitoring offers continuous tracking of your credit history and credit score and alerts you immediately to any unexpected changes. These changes include:

  • New requests for credit
  • New loans, lines of credit, or credit cards opened in your name
  • Changes in your address or other personal information
  • Late payments, liens, and foreclosures appearing on your record

Most credit monitoring services also provide regular access to your updated credit history.

The Fine Print

It is important to be aware of what credit monitoring does and does not do in terms of flagging identity theft, reporting fraud, correcting errors, and recovering lost funds. These services can alert you to your credit standings and flag issues, but they cannot stop data breaches, phishing emails, or other fraudster attempts. 

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau also urges consumers to be aware of the services they are receiving as part of credit monitoring services as well as hidden fees and cancellation policies.

Finally, credit monitoring will not improve your credit but it can help steer you in the right direction. Of course, Partners Financial FCU is here for you too!

Benefits of Credit Monitoring

Credit monitoring is critical to protecting your creditworthiness from being damaged by fraud or identity theft. While it has always been important to be sure that the information on your credit history is accurate, criminals are increasingly using stolen personal information to open bank accounts, apply for credit cards, and take out loans, often without the victim’s knowledge.

A recent study by the AARP found that identity fraud rose 70% between 2020 and 2021 with cybercriminals taking advantage of the increased use of online transactions amid the pandemic to steal close to $24 billion. The study estimated that 15 million people had their personal financial information stolen in 2021, usually without their knowledge.

While credit monitoring cannot stop criminals from stealing your identity, it can alert you that it has taken place, allowing you to limit the damage by freezing your credit report, changing your bank cards and account numbers, and alerting merchants and vendors to fraudulent transactions. Taking these actions will also help limit the impact on your credit score.

Accessing Credit Monitoring Services

Credit monitoring services are available from financial institutions, the big three credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion), and independent providers. Many providers will charge customers between $10 and $15 a month on a subscription basis for a range of services including credit monitoring.

Credit monitoring services are often bundled with additional security features. With a PFFCU Premium Checking account, you have access to credit monitoring and ID Theft services, including:

  • Active dark web monitoring to detect if your personal information has been compromised
  • Managed identity theft recovery with a personal recovery advocate
  • Reimbursement for costs incurred as a result of identity theft

These services are valuable tools to have available if you are unlucky enough to fall victim to identity theft.

What Is Credit Monitoring? Learn More With Partners Financial FCU!

At Partners Financial FCU we recognize the value of protecting our members’ assets and credit. As a Premium Checking account holder, you are entitled to credit monitoring services and ID Theft recovery services, as well as other services designed to protect your assets and safeguard your credit.

Other benefits of our Premium Checking account include:

  • A discount on consumer loans
  • Overdraft protection
  • Mobile phone protection
  • Free box of checks every 12 months
  • Free debit card replacement

Click below to learn more about the valuable account benefits we offer our customers.


You are leaving the Partners FFCU website and will be linked to an alternate Internet site not operated by the credit union. Partners FFCU is not responsible for the content of the alternate Internet website. Partners FFCU does not represent either the third party or you if the two of you enter into a transaction. Please be aware that privacy and security policies on the website to which you are being taken may differ from those practiced by Partners FFCU.

A $15. Convenience fee will be automatically added to your payment amount. Your maximum total payment amount (including the $15 convenience fee) cannot exceed $800. Payments initiated and approved by 3:00pm will be applied to your loan on the same business day. Payments initiated and approved after 3:00pm, or on a day that the credit union is closed (weekends and holidays), will be applied on the next business day. If you have a PFFCU debit card, please log into home banking to make your loan payment.

Please select OK to confirm and continue to the payment form.

Excludes mortgages and home equity lines of credit. A $25 fee is due at set-up for each loan. Loan must have been open for at least 6 months. Past due accounts do not qualify. One skip-a-pay allowed per calendar year (Jan-Dec).