Bad Credit? Raise Your Credit Score in 24 Hours. How to Spot Credit Repair Scams Running Rampant in Your City

Good credit is good. Bad credit is bad. You’re stuck with it. You can risk paying hundreds to thousands of dollars to remove irrefutable bad credit from your credit history. But it doesn’t work too well unless someone breaks the law, or the consumer breaks the law to erase accumulated bad credit.

Credit repair service revenue in the U.S. market has grown at a staggering pace over the past five years to reach an estimated $6.6 billion in 2023, according to

Editor’s Note: How to Spot Credit Repair Scams Running Rampant in Your City Highlights the Continuing NewsBlaze Series Focusing on Illegal Credit Repair Companies in the United States.

curbing credit repair companies
Curbing credit repair companies. Image by Alexander Lesnitsky from Pixabay, customized by NewsBlaze.

In today’s economy, legitimate credit repair services are badly needed. For instance, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), over 42 million Americans, or 13% of the population, have inaccurate information on their credit reports, which includes minor errors like misspelled words, fraudulent accounts, and incorrect payment records.

Besides those errors, unless consumers regularly check their credit reports, remaining debts on file pass the 7-year statute of limitations, which often happens, is serious enough to cause credit denial because the person’s credit score is too low.

Suppose you are one of the millions with inaccurate debts on your credit file and need to fix your credit to qualify for lower interest rates. In such cases, it may be necessary to enlist the services of a reputable credit repair service or credit debt counselor for further assistance. How To Avoid Credit Repair Scams – Forbes Advisor

laura blankenship
Laura Blankenship.

“The chances credit repair companies can do anything you couldn’t do on your own are very unlikely,” says Laura Blankenship. Blankenship is the marketing director for the Better Business Bureau serving Eastern Michigan.

The Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) grants Americans the right to submit a dispute and request an investigation upon discovering an error or errors on their credit report. Once a dispute is filed the credit reporting agencies, Experian, Transunion and Equixfax must investigate the matter within 30 days unless the credit bureaus suspect the dispute is frivolous.

“Any person can repair their own credit,” says Howard Dvorkin, chairman at “We also pay people to change our oil, but any person can do their own oil change; you have to have some knowledge and do some prep work. It’s the same thing.”

Talk is easier said than done because most consumers don’t know credit repair law, or how to challenge lenders who report false information. Neither are they knowledgeable about writing legal verbiage to have expired debts removed from their credit reports. The lack of knowledge by consumers about the rules of the game in the credit industry is what drives the money-making engine for those in the credit business who do know.

Legal Credit Repair Services

To qualify for lower interest rates by increasing your credit score, it may be necessary to seek the assistance of credit repair services or credit debt counselors.

First, not all credit repair services are bad operators. There are good ones out there.

However, the practice of credit repair companies charging exorbitant fees upfront in exchange for false promises to help improve a person’s credit score when their score remains in poor status are the primary focus of a NewsBlaze investigation led by senior reporter Clarence Walker Jr.

Negative information appears on consumers’ credit reports when payment on a credit card is late, a car payment is late or a repo, or monthly payment on a loan is late, which, in turn, negatively impacts credit scores, making it harder and more costly to obtain new loans. In some instances, lenders may refuse to give you a loan altogether.

Consumers frequently turn to credit repair companies for help in fixing their credit. Reputable operators strive to enhance an individual’s credit scores by disputing negative entries on their credit reports, which can result in a credit score increase if the contested items are legitimately corrected or deleted.

In this story, we reveal the inner workings of illegal credit repair companies. We also highlight how legal credit repair services should work for people in dire need of help to remove inaccurate negative items from their credit history to give consumers a higher credit score.

Credit repair. @Pixabay
Credit repair. Image @Pixabay

Credit Repair: Legal or Illegal

Unscrupulous representatives in the credit field pitch the same eye-catching seductive offers:

  • “We can erase your bad credit 100 percent guaranteed within 72 hours.”
  • “Create a new identity” – legally.
  • “We can remove bankruptcies, judgments, liens, and bad loans from your credit file forever!”
  • “Buy a new home or car, have credit cards with unlimited spending; we can fix your bad credit.”

Welcome to the credit repair world.

People across the nation are drawn to a quick solution to improve their credit by hiring credit repair services that advertise outlandish claims to boost their credit score by up to 300 or even 400 points.

Who doesn’t want to enjoy the rewards of a credit card full of perks or secure a low-interest rate on a car loan, a mortgage, clothes, furniture, jewelry, or electronics; despite having the worst credit?

According to, credit scores range from 300 to 850 points. For example, a score of 750 and up is very good, and scores of 800 or above represent excellent credit. Any score ranging below 600 is poor credit.

It is imperative to pay close attention to the advisories provided by the Federal Trade Commission and other regulatory authorities concerning the operations of specific firms that provide credit repair services.

The Federal Credit Repair Organizations Act of 1996 said it is unlawful for companies providing credit repair services to deceive customers about their ability to instantly change bad results to good results on a consumer’s credit report.

Moreover, charging upfront fees before delivering the promised services is explicitly prohibited by this legislation. It is important to exercise caution and ensure compliance with the law when seeking assistance from credit repair companies to avoid falling victim to potential fraudulent schemes.

Roekeicha Brisby: Rose Credit Repair ‘Credit Washing’ Scheme

Roekeicha Brisby, a resident of the greater Houston-Harris County area in Humble, Texas, dipped her fingers into the credit repair scams through her company, identified as Rose Credit Repair.

Houston Area law enforcement officers said Roekeicha Brisby, then 29, engaged in a scheme known as ‘Credit Washing.’ After police investigated Brisby’s fraudulent credit repair activities, they soon discovered how she filed 133 ‘false identity-theft reports’ on behalf of her clients to pull off the credit score trick.

Others accused the woman of illegally fixing people’s credit to have debts taken off her client’s credit reports, which, in return, raises a person’s credit score high enough to make expensive purchases or receive loans at low interest rates.

Brisby’s crimes caused several banks and financial lending institutions to lose at least $3.3 million, Harris County Precinct #4 Constable Office said in a July 10th, 2022, news release.

Authorities further said Brisby’s ‘Credit Washing‘ schemes may involve an ongoing multi-billion dollar credit repair operation in Atlanta, Georgia. As of this writing, Brisby hasn’t been sentenced.

Roekeicha Brisby was arrested by Harris County Constable deputies. Photo: Harris County Precinct 4 Constable's Office
Roekeicha Brisby was arrested by Harris County Constable deputies. Photo: Harris County Precinct 4 Constable’s Office

Alex V. Miller

In a federal civil complaint filed on March 1, 2022, and unsealed on March 14, the Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department won a permanent injunction preventing Turbo Solutions Credit Repair Company and its CEO, Alexander V. Miller, then 42, of Missouri City from representing that the company can repair or improve credit scores for customers.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) alleged that Turbo Solutions Inc. bilked consumers out of millions of dollars by falsely claiming the removal of negative information from documented credit reports.

alex v miller
alex v miller

Turbo Solutions executed another scheme by persuading customers to file fake identity theft reports on the FTC’s website to explain the negative entries listed on their credit reports.

Many consumers in the scheme would gradually enjoy higher credit scores, which enabled them to purchase expensive material possessions at lower interest rates.

“ is a resource for consumers, not scammers,” said Director Samuel Levine of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.

“Those who abuse this resource by filing false reports can expect to hear from us.”

Following the shutdown of Turbo Solutions, Alex Miller is also facing hefty fines and seizures of luxury possessions and expensive properties purchased through ill-gotten gains.

Credit Repair: A Quick Fix

Credit repair companies with solid reputations can often succeed in identifying and fixing factual inaccuracies and errors in a person’s credit file. Yet, keep in mind that no matter how many disputes a company files on your behalf, it’s unlikely the credit bureaus will remove information considered accurately reported by lenders.

Despite various strategies to raise your credit score, rectifying bad credit demands a sustained effort over time, so be cautious of companies promising quick solutions, as they may have ulterior motives to rip off your money and do little to nothing to increase your credit score, which often means that for many Americans when they pay to have their credit scores raised from poor status to higher status, there is a chance they’re being duped.

“If a company says they can get accurate information off of your report, they’re not being truthful,” says Ricki Lowitz, co-founder and co-CEO of Working Credit, a nonprofit that offers credit-building education and counseling services. “They may get accurate negative items removed, but only temporarily.”

Even well-established and dependable credit repair services have limitations. Certain tasks, such as repairing credit files, can be done by the person by submitting disputes to the three primary credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion – without incurring any costs.

Although credit repair can offer advantages, many people turn to the credit repair sector for urgent help, for instance, when getting ready to buy a new car or home. Sadly, in these high-pressure situations, individuals become especially vulnerable, and certain credit repair firms take advantage of this to deceive unsuspecting clients.

Credit Repair Truth

Blaze Credit Repair Service

Wanda Blaze owns Blaze Credit Repair Service in Houston, Texas. Blaze said she often informs customers before working on their credit history that “this is not a situation that can be changed overnight.”

Assuming Blaze’s clients have errors on their credit reports that shouldn’t be there, from a legal standpoint, Blaze explains how she tackled the problem of dealing with the credit bureaus.

“After we review the credit reports, we prioritize each negative report, and then we use all of the legal action available to resolve and remove each one. While we’re working to have all negatives removed, we also have new avenues to build your credit score by adding ways (for the client) to receive positive reporting.”

Ms. Blaze is highly critical of companies that trick people and take their money while knowing they cannot remove possession, bankruptcy, late payments, and other negative items from a person’s credit report if the statute of limitations hasn’t expired.

“Any credit repair business that misleads consumers by promising an overnight fix is misleading and illegal because it could cause the consumer further delays in having their credit properly repaired.”

wanda blaze blaze credit repair. photo c/o wanda blaze
Wanda Blaze Blaze Credit Repair. Photo c/o Wanda Blaze

The Devil’s Details

Reputable credit repair companies like Blaze Credit Services and Lexington Law have the knowledge and skills to identify errors overlooked by consumers and legally remove inaccurate information from your credit report due to technicalities in the reporting or dispute process. Additionally, some companies provide empowerment on building credit and self-improvement methods for your credit score,, as mentioned by Wanda Blaze.

Still, fraudulent companies are designed to take your money.

Credit repair scams make promises they cannot keep and may employ tactics that could be damaging in the long term.

“The way [credit repair companies are] doing it is either abusing loopholes or doing things that are illegal or fraudulent,” said Thomas Nitzsche, a certified financial educator at Money Management International, in a recent Forbes article. Money Management is a nonprofit credit counseling organization.

money management director thomas nietzsche
Money management director Thomas Nietzsche. Photo c/o Thomas Nietzsche.

Don’t Allow a Credit Repair Company Trick You into Breaking the Law

Shady credit repair companies may file identity theft reports with the police in your name and claim that the accounts with negative information were opened fraudulently by a person who stole your identity. This method can be effective temporarily, but filing false reports is illegal.

Improvements in credit scores will probably take effect using this tactic, which may last temporarily and backfire once discovered. Moreover, independent of your credit scores, such practices may complicate new credit applications, as they can trigger lenders’ suspicions when you seek new loans or credit cards.

handcuffs Image by Klaus Hausmann from Pixabay
Don’t break the law trying to fix credit. Image by Klaus Hausmann from Pixabay

Don’t File False Police Reports Claiming Your Identity Was Stolen

Credit repair companies also shouldn’t suggest you say or do anything that’s not true.

“Making a fraud statement is a big deal, and making a false police report is a crime,” says Matt Liistro, a board member at the American Association of Consumer Credit Professionals, a credit repair association. “Getting a consumer to go and do that – that’s a red flag.”

You also shouldn’t be pressured into lying about your credit history. “If you see something that is legitimately not correct, then, by all means, dispute it,” says Nitzsche. “But if something is factually true, then you shouldn’t be disputing it as incorrect.”

Guaranteed Results in 72 Hours – Maybe 24 Hours!

Companies with the best intentions should always avoid guaranteeing results, like telling a customer that a certain increase in scores will happen by a set number of points within a few days.

“Guarantees are a red flag,” says Liistro. “The companies say they’ll get something removed in 15 or 30 days. You must ask yourself how it’s getting done.”

Many companies provide a money-back guarantee, which is different from lying to consumers; they can expect an automatic boost in their credit scores. “In general, you want to be on the lookout for any company that claims they can do anything overnight,” says Nitzsche.

So here’s what you need to do: watch out for credit repair scams.

A New Credit Profile Number (CPN) Represents Fraud

Credit profile numbers, or CPNs, have become a hot topic in the world of credit repair. Despite sounding attractive, it’s important for anyone considering using CPNs as a substitute Social Security Number (SSN))) to give themselves good credit. Please be aware that using CPNs is a crime. A person can be arrested and charged with a felony offense.

What Are CPNs? How Do They Work?

CPNs are nine-digit numbers that are advertised as replacements for SSNs. They are often used by individuals who want to hide a poor credit history to start a fresh credit file. Companies that offer CPNs are predatory, preying on desperate consumers determined to repair their credit. These questionable companies claim that CPNs can help establish a new credit line, but the concept is a deceptive and illegal practice.

Swatisha Keith can vouch for the trouble an innocent person can get into by using CPNs. Keith had always desired a successful life, and she figured if she had better credit, that would be a start. Having heard of other people she knew who had used CPNs’ to buy new cars and were given low-interest credit cards, she decided to try the same.

Anticipating a ‘big’ breakthrough, Swatisha paid a cool $1500 for a nine-digit CPN, the same number of digits as a legal social security number. Surprisingly, the new CPN worked its magic. “Within two months of having it, I saw my credit score go up.

It was in the 700s’. So I was like, “This is perfect,” Swatisha told NBC5 News in Dallas. Swatisha’s good fortune crashed hard as stock prices on Wall Street crashed when federal agents arrested her on felony fraud charges. She faced up to 30 years in prison. “I was terrified because I’ve never been in trouble,” Swatisha explained during her interview with the NBC5 reporter.

Former Special Agent Matt Pannell with the Social Security Administration says using a CPN to establish credit is illegal. To do so “is a false representation on a loan application. And that’s against the law in this country,” Pannell said. Swatisha Keith got a break with a light sentence. She avoided prison. A judge gave her 18 months of probation and restitution.

Another scheme is when a credit repair operator may ask you to seek a new employer identification number (EIN) from the Internal Revenue Service and instruct you to utilize either the CPN or the new EIN when applying for credit.

These same activities involving the CPN and EIN numbers are classified as fraudulent, encompassing identity theft. A report by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) indicates that illegal credit operations often target stolen Social Security numbers, with a particular focus on those belonging to minors or deceased individuals.

By utilizing a stolen identification number, one would become complicit in identity theft, while any endeavor to misrepresent credit history or furnish false information on credit applications, as stated, constitutes fraud. Participation in these practices carries serious criminal charges.

At this point, you might ask, ‘How would I know if a Credit Repair Service is real or a scam?’

Ways to Spot a Fraudulent Credit Repair Company

  • A credit service claims to boost your credit score overnight, especially if they ask you to pay for it. Credit scores cannot automatically repair themselves, nor can a credit score boost itself overnight.
  • Telling someone to dispute accurate and true information on their credit report,.
  • A credit specialist advises you not to contact the credit reporting companies or your financial institution directly.
  • A company rep advises you to give false information on a loan or credit application.
  • A rep neglects to explain your legal rights to you when describing their services.
  • A rep says they’ll provide a new Social Security number, CPN, or another nine-digit identification number to use instead of using your own Social Security number.

Information is power; what consumers need to know is that the Credit Repair Organization Act protects consumers’ rights under Title IV of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, which prohibits untrue or misleading representations that require certain disclosures in the offering or sale of credit repair services. It is illegal for credit repair companies to lie or misrepresent the scope of their services or to charge a person upfront before helping them.

Fortune magazine picked these best credit repair companies. Best credit repair companies – and what they do well

Understand Your Credit Rights

Legitimate credit repair companies must explain your legal rights in a written contract, which should include the following:

  • The services to be provided include a three-day cancellation period at no charge, accompanied by a written cancellation form, an anticipated timeline for results, the total cost of the service, and any guaranteed specific outcomes.

Do you feel suspicious that you’ve been a victim of credit repair fraud?

If so, file a complaint online at or call 1.877.FTC.HELP.

Additional Sources of Information

Fixing Your Credit FAQs. Accessed February 9, 2024.

Houston TX-based Senior Reporter Clarence Walker can be reached at [email protected]

Clarence Walker
As an analyst and researcher for the PI industry and a business consultant, Clarence Walker is a veteran writer, crime reporter and investigative journalist. He began his writing career with New York-based True Crime Magazines in Houston Texas in 1983, publishing more than 300 feature stories. He wrote for the Houston Chronicle (This Week Neighborhood News and Op-Eds) including freelancing for Houston Forward Times.Working as a paralegal for a reputable law firm, he wrote for National Law Journal, a publication devoted to legal issues and major court decisions. As a journalist writing for internet publishers, Walker's work can be found at American, Gangster Inc., Drug War Chronicle, Drug War101 and Alternet.His latest expansion is to News Break.Six of Walker's crime articles were re-published into a paperback series published by Pinnacle Books. One book titled: Crimes Of The Rich And Famous, edited by Rose Mandelsburg, garnered considerable favorable ratings. Gale Publisher also re-published a story into its paperback series that he wrote about the Mob: Is the Mafia Still a Force in America?Meanwhile this dedicated journalist wrote criminal justice issues and crime pieces for John Walsh's America's Most Wanted Crime Magazine, a companion to Walsh blockbuster AMW show. If not working PI cases and providing business intelligence to business owners, Walker operates a writing service for clients, then serves as a crime historian guest for the Houston-based Channel 11TV show called the "Cold Case Murder Series" hosted by reporter Jeff McShan.At NewsBlaze, Clarence Walker expands his writing abilities to include politics, human interest and world events.Clarence Walker can be reached at: [email protected]