Do Multiple Credit Checks Affect Your Credit Score?
Whenever you apply for a mobile phone contract the lender will run a credit check and this will result in what’s known in the industry as a hard enquiry. A hard enquiry can negatively impact your credit score and multiple hard enquiries aren’t a good thing as it may indicate that you are desperate for credit, or that you aren’t able to qualify for the credit.
Lenders always use previous searches because certain patterns and other information gleaned helps them calculate a score and work out whether a person is a high risk. For example, a lot of credit applications in a short space of time can signal someone is ‘credit hungry’.
In terms of a mobile phone contract, if a network runs a credit check and you pass it won’t have much of an effect. The problem comes when multiple hard inquiries are carried out in a short amount of time which will negatively impact your credit rating. This is why we recommend customers do not keep reapplying elsewhere if they have been declined at one network, instead if you need access to texts, minutes and data take out a prepaid sim that doesn't have a credit check, instead, it operates on a rolling 30-day basis.
If you think a hard inquiry happened without your permission, check your credit reports to see the full details of the enquiry and you might decide to dispute it. Please note you can only dispute hard enquiries that have occurred without your permission. If you gave permission for the lookup it usually takes up to two years for them to fall off your report.