When you get free credit scores from a variety of sources, they are often called FAKO scores. A FAKO score isn’t an actual credit score. FAKO is a phrase given to any credit score that isn’t built by Fair Isaac, or a “FICO” score. Any non-FICO score was deemed as being fake because it wasn’t something lenders used.

FAKO scores (also known as educational or equivalency scores) are a good way to determine where you fall within the credit score range but should not be confused by the credit scores used by most lenders. Increasingly, lenders are using different credit scoring algorithms that are not associated with FICO.

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