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Background Investigation and Hard Credit Inquiry

Valued Member

Background Investigation and Hard Credit Inquiry

I have new job and I recently got a credit alert that a hard inquiry had been made against my credit report.  It was by "OPM" which is the people in the government who do the background investigations. I knew they had to check my credit, but why a hard inquiry, and will this hurt my score (which is really REALLY high)?

Message 1 of 3
Moderator Emerita

Re: Background Investigation and Hard Credit Inquiry

It should be coded as EMPL. If it is, even though it's a pull of your full report, it will not be scored against you.


Unfortunately, the only way to confirm whether it is EMPL is to look at a full report from EQ or TU. (EX doesn't include inquiry prefixes.)


If you haven't pulled your freebie within the last 12 months, you can do so through annualcreditreport-dot-com. Otherwise, you can buy one from Equifax's or TransUnions's website.


Don't sign up for any monitoring services, or you'll wind up not getting a full report, especially from TU. One exception: Equifax's Credit Watch Gold monitors your EQ report and lets you pull a full report every day, if you want to. Also, don't buy scores from the sites, as it's nearly impossible these days to buy an actual FICO score elsewhere.


Expect to pay around $10-$15 for one report. I like the Equifax reports better, but that's just me.


I'm a contractor for the federal government, and my employer (the contracting firm) pulled my report several months ago. It was coded as EMPL, and it was not counted for scoring.

* Credit is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master. * Who's the boss --you or your credit?
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007
Message 2 of 3
Super Contributor

Re: Background Investigation and Hard Credit Inquiry

I assume this is for a government job since it was from OPM.  Should not count on your score at all.  I had the same alert back in June.  It does not show up on MyFico CR.


Good luck with the job.

1/25/2021: FICO 850 EQ 848 TU 847 EX
Message 3 of 3
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