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Have you been seeing SYNCB or SYNCB/PPC on your credit report lately?
If it seems that the acronym has popped up out of the blue, there's no need to panic just yet. It's likely there because you've recently applied for a line of credit with a store or an online payment system, such as PayPal. Of course, this means you've likely garnered a hard inquiry, which impacts your credit score.
This usually happens whenever you request to open a new line of credit. However, you will want to monitor your credit reports closely to ensure that the SYNCB or SYNCB/PPC activity that's showing up is legitimate and has been authorized by you.
In this article, we're going to explain what SYNCB and SYNCB/PPC stand for, where it came from, and how to remove it from your credit report. Read on to learn more.
SYNCB is an acronym for Synchrony Bank. The PPC stands for PayPal Credit.
Synchrony Bank is actually a Synchrony Financial subsidiary, a publicly-traded and FDIC-insured national online banking company. In other words, it's a financial institution that offers "white label" financial services to other companies, i.e., PayPal, Care Credit, and so on. The purpose of these partnerships is to allow lines of credit and financing services to other companies.
In 2018, Synchrony Bank bought out PayPal's Credit and Bill Me Later accounts. If you have a PayPal Credit account or the Bill Me Later option, your debts are now owed to Synchrony Bank. Aside from PayPal, Synchrony Bank also now owns the following retailer credit accounts operating on both Visa and Mastercard networks:
In total, Synchrony Bank owns a total of 116 store credit cards. So, if you're seeing SYNCB pop up on your credit report but don't have a PayPal Credit or Bill Me Later account, you're likely affiliated with SYNCB elsewhere. It's a good idea to double-check all of your credit accounts and their partnerships to ensure that the SYNCB on your credit report belongs to you and isn't there due to a case of identity theft.
Before Synchrony Bank took over, PayPal Credit and Bill Me Later weren't something that showed up on everyone's credit reports. This is because PayPal Holdings didn't really report to any credit reporting agencies. Now that Synchrony Bank is steering the ship, they've taken on the responsibility of reporting to the credit bureaus monthly.
If you're now seeing SYNCB/PPC crop up on your credit report, here's why:
Typically, when you apply for a credit line with most companies, they perform a hard inquiry on your credit. Suppose you've applied for a PayPal Credit account or any other credit account associated with SYNCB. In that case, they always go the hard inquiry route to check your credit for its application evaluation.
Hard inquiries always show up on your credit report because they negatively impact your credit scores. They'll also remain on your credit report for up to two years. Note that inquiries only apply to credit-related products so you will not see them for opening up a checking or savings bank account.
You may not have a Synchrony Bank credit card account, but you may have a parent, spouse, child, or business partner who applied for a new account with Synchrony. If so, they may have added you to their list of authorized users for that card.
If you are an authorized user, your credit report will also include an account of the use of that card. Being an authorized user has its advtantages. If the cardholder is a financially responsible person, their strong payment history of their credit card bill will also help improve your credit score.
On the off chance that you didn't apply for a PayPal Credit account and a SYNCB/PPC hard inquiry shows up on your reports, you may have become a victim of identity theft. If this has happened to you, you'll want to get on top of the situation immediately.
If you're facing identity theft, the first thing you'll want to do is contact the company that made the inquiry. They should be able to prove that you authorized the credit inquiry. From there, you'll want to document and report the fraudulent activity, notify the credit bureaus and have them place a fraud alert, then dispute the inquiry.
Your PayPal Credit or Bill Me Later account will show on your credit report as either active or closed. Regardless of how old the accounts were, if they were closed before Synchrony Bank took over, they were likely being reported for the first time.
If your PayPal Credit was active and in good standing—as in, you didn't owe any money—and now it's suddenly closed, this could be the work of Synchrony Bank. Now that SYNCB owns the accounts, they can not only raise and lower your credit lines, but they can also close your account for inactivity.
If you haven't used your account for a year or more, the creditors won't make any money off your transaction fees. That's why they'll close your account due to inactivity. It's also the most common reason for closed accounts. Either way, it'll affect your credit score, and if you want your account reopened, you'll need to contact them right away.
Once again, if you see an account that you don't recognize, whether it's active or closed, you'll want to contact SYNCB and follow the steps above for reporting fraudulent activity.
The SYNCB/PPC, SYNCB credit card, and any other SYNCB partnership counts as a line of credit in the eyes of the credit bureaus. That means any hard inquiries, credit misuse, and other activity will affect both your utilization and credit score.
In general, each new hard inquiry will lower your credit score up to five points. Of course, if you have multiple hard inquiries pulled, that number becomes compounded, lowering your score by the tens and maybe even twenties. Multiple hard inquiries also look bad to credit issuers, which will make it challenging to obtain a new credit card in the near future at a competitive interest rate.
Having closed accounts, on the other hand, affects your credit utilization rate. Closed accounts show that you have less credit. So, if you still owe any debts, having less credit causes your utilization rates to increase. This also has a negative impact on your credit score since it shows that you're nearly reaching your credit limits with your current lenders.
Your closed accounts will still contribute to your length of credit history. However, it can take up to 10 years for closed accounts to be cleared from your credit report, granted they remain in good standing—i.e., you continue to pay off your debts on time and avoid late payments.
Once again, closed accounts affect your utilization rate, which impacts your overall credit score. For the most part, if you don't owe any debt, closing your recent SYNCB account will only negatively affect your credit score temporarily.
If you don't ever plan to use this credit line and don't want to have it out there, it's probably a good idea to go ahead and close it. Of course, keeping it open won't hurt your credit. However, if you don't use it, then SYNCB will close the account for inactivity eventually.
If you think you've accidentally opened the SYNB/PCC or that you've been a victim of identity theft, then you should absolutely dispute it. As we've mentioned, one hard inquiry won't really hurt you. However, multiple hard inquiries and lousy credit behavior will ruin your credit score and haunt you for years to come.
As we've been stressing throughout this entire article, having multiple hard inquiries pulled can drop your score and hurt your chances of getting approved for credit accounts in the future. So, if you're able to, you'll want to attempt to get the SYNCB, or SYNCB/PPC hit removed from your credit report.
Here's how it's done:
With so much of our personal information all over the internet, we're ripe for the picking for identity thieves. So, if you haven't authorized the opening of any accounts with SYNCB or its partners, it means that someone else did. In your name.
Again, if identity theft is the case, you'll need to dispute it immediately.
To file a proper dispute, you'll want to write a debt validation letter to send to both SYNCB and the three credit bureaus they report to (Equifax, Experian, & Transunion). When you do this, Synchrony Bank will have to find evidence of your credit application. Otherwise, they'll have to remove the hard inquiry from your report.
This is usually a quick and easy fix. However, you only have 30 days to dispute the inquiry's validity, starting with the date of the first SYNCB or SYNCB/PPC appearance. This is why it's so important to monitor your credit score frequently.
Seeing SYNCB or SYNCB/PPC suddenly show up on your credit report can throw you off, especially if you've never seen the acronym before. To avoid any surprises, make sure to check your credit score and report frequently so you can catch any suspicious activity. You can use a credit monitoring service such as Harvest to keep track of your credit with a free credit score.
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Disclaimer: Harvest is not providing financial advice. The content presented does not reflect the view of the Issuing Banks and is presented for general education and informational purposes only. Please consult with a qualified professional for financial advice.