These CRAs work for the lenders (the OCs). They accumulate information from lenders, compile it, and sell it back to the lenders. Again, this is a pretty simple business model. Their main concern is to keep their lender clients happy. Remember that the three CRAs all compete with each other. Their incentive is to compile negative information on consumers, and to report lower credit scores, because they know that if the information they report is negative, their client lenders make more money. They look at it this way: The more unfavorable the data they report to a lender, the more likely that lender will continue to report to them and to pay them for future “inquiries.” The US Government: Without the government, the deck is pretty much stacked against you. You’re just one person. You’re up against powerful banks, finance companies, credit card companies, collection agencies, and huge, billion-dollar credit reporting bureaucracies. You want your credit score to be high; your opposition wants it to be lower. They’re rich and powerful and you’re not. At first glance, this doesn’t look like a fair fight. Fortunately, Congress has passed some federal laws that put some powerful weapons in your hands—tools which, if used correctly, can level the playing The lenders’ business model is pretty simple--The higher the interest rate on any given loan, the more money they make. They can get away with charging you a higher rate when your credit report has problems and your score is lower. Therefore, their incentive is to do what they can to keep your credit rating down. 34 field. In the remainder of this book, I’m going to show you exactly how to use these weapons, improve your credit standing, and make a better life for yourself.