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| October 31, 2022

How to Read CIBIL Report - A Step-by-Step Process

Today, not only low and medium-income individuals and small businesses need loans, but mega businesses do too. While for most of us, a loan is taken out in a time of a financial crunch or for building an asset. However, a loan can prove to be a smart financial tool for intelligent financial planning and management. Businesses can leverage their creditworthiness to grow their business by judiciously using various loan options. When you apply for a loan, the first thing a lender does is read your CIBIL report to check your past credit behavior and gauge your creditworthiness.

Your credit score is more important in unsecured loans than in secured ones. Lenders go through your CIBIL report more scrupulously in unsecured loans as there is no collateral and hence the risk associated is bigger for lenders. For lenders, knowing how to read your CIBIL report means not only accessing your credit score. It is also a reference point for gathering information about your past credit activity, repayment history, and the status of your credit accounts, among other things.

Learning how to read your CIBIL score is not difficult and once you understand how to interpret the report, it can help you tremendously. For borrowers, keeping a regular check on their credit score can make an assessment of their loan eligibility easier. A high credit score gives you an advantage while getting your loan processed, negotiating for better interest rates, and enhancing your loan eligibility. Also, if you have defaulted on your loan in the past or opted for a loan settlement, your credit score drops significantly. Knowing how to read your credit score can help you improve your credit rating for future loans.

What is a CIBIL Report?

TransUnion CIBIL Limited, or CIBIL as it is commonly known, is a credit information company that collects financial data regarding loans and credit cards and shares it with its members. It collects information about all borrowers from financial companies and then converts this into a report detailing the credit history of the borrower. A CIBIL Credit Information Report contains your CIBIL score, personal information, contact information, employment information, account information, and inquiry information. We shall learn how to read your CIBIL report in detail.

Credit card issuers and lenders report your repayment details to CIBIL either monthly or quarterly. Banks and NBFCs are subscribers of this data and use it to assess the creditworthiness and also the risks associated with the borrower.

How to Read and Interpret your CIBIL Report?

It is good financial discipline to keep a track of your credit score and maintain a good score. But when you pull up your credit report from CIBIL, the amount of data available could easily overwhelm you. How to read this CIBIL report is the question that comes to your mind. Understanding what the various sections of the report mean will help you navigate through it.

Let’s take a look at each of these sections in detail:

  • Credit Score: While reading your CIBIL Report, the credit score is the first section you encounter. CIBIL Score is a three-digit numeric summary of your credit history, generated through the Credit Information Report filed by lenders. A CIR is an individual’s credit payment history across loan types and credit institutions over some time. The CIBIL Credit score ranges from 300-900 and a score above 750 is considered good. A CIR does not contain details of your savings, investments, or fixed deposits.

    While reading your CIBIL report, there may be cases when the score is displayed as NA or NH. This could mean that you either do not have a credit history yet (people who haven’t started earning), no credit activity in the last few years or you have no credit cards/ any other loan exposure.

  • Personal Information: This section contains all your personal information such as your name, date of birth, gender, and identification numbers such as PAN, passport number, and voter’s number. Please note that this information is uploaded by the lenders. You should go through it very carefully to make sure it is correct.

  • Contact Information: This section contains your addresses, phone numbers, and email address. As with the personal information, the contact information here is uploaded by lenders. Be sure to verify the details and report any inaccuracies.

  • Employment Information: This section of the CIBIL report covers your occupation, and monthly and annual income details as reported by the lenders at the time of loan application.

  • Account Information: This is a very important section as your CIBIL score is most influenced by this. It contains information about your credit history, credit card and loan accounts, etc. The account information is presented systematically in a tabulated manner under these heads:

    • Name of the lender
    • Type of credit facility
    • Account number
    • Date of opening the account
    • Date of last payment
    • Loan Amount
    • Outstanding balance
    • Monthly record of the last 36 months

    In addition, the Days Past Due (DPD), i.e. the number of days the payment on an account is due, will also be mentioned.

    The types of asset classification in the DPD section are:

    • Standard (STD): Payments being made within 90 days
    • Special Mention Account (SMA): Special account created for reporting Standard


    Accounts moving toward Sub-Standard

    • Sub-Standard (SUB): Payments being made after 90 days.
    • Doubtful (DBT): The account has remained Sub-Standard for 12 months
    • Loss (LSS): An account where loss has been identified and remains uncollectible


    Anything but “000” or “STD” is considered negative by the lender. ‘XXX’ on your DPD for a certain account implies that information for these months has not been reported to CIBIL by the lenders.


  • Inquiry Information: This section reports the number of inquiries your lenders have made in response to your various credit/loan applications. The details include the lender’s name, type of loan applied for, size of the loan, and date of application.

  • Red Box: Sometimes, you can find a red box placed above the ‘account details’ table. This box indicates any dispute associated with the account information along with the date of the dispute. The red box is nothing but an alert message and will be closed once the dispute is settled.

How to Rectify CIBIL Report Errors?

The details on your CIBIL Repost are reported by lenders and creditors. Inaccuracies may appear on your credit report owing to a misprint, incorrect information relayed by lenders, duplicate entries, data entry errors, etc. It is important to check for these errors while reading your CIBIL Report.

Follow these steps for CIBIL Report correction:

  • Step 1: Download your latest credit report from the CIBIL portal.

  • Step 2: Read your CIBIL Report thoroughly and go through each section carefully. Your credit account information will have tags next to each credit account. Check if the tags mentioning settled, closed, or open are correct.

  • Step 3: Report the errors by initiating the dispute resolution process on the CIBIL portal. Follow the instructions, complete the resolution form and validate your claims by submitting necessary evidence.

  • Step 4: Wait for verification of your claims by CIBIL. CIBIL does so by contacting your lenders and creditors to investigate the claims. After a thorough investigation and verification, CIBIL will initiate the necessary rectification of your report.

Now that you have understood how to read your CIBIL report, accessing and assessing your credit score and credit information becomes easier. This can help you immensely to spot and rectify errors if any and maintain a good CIBIL score.

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