As with the original thread, thank you for sharing all of your detailed research with us ARS. In reading through this new thread, there were two questions that I have that I did not see anyone ask:
1) With the old company and their original tiers, they paid more for cards over 15 years. Do you know if the new company does anything like that? I noticed your rate table mentioned they would quote you for $40k+ limits but it seems the age is not factored for a custom quote.
Yes, they likely will. Cards with high limits and/or high age are open for negotiation, as they're in much higher demand. Email and ask for a custom quote. :)
2) As the new company does everything via email, does that mean that they are sending you the AU's information (address, SSN, etc.) via plain text email messages? Given their thorough vetting processes that you mentioned, that seems like a glaring security risk to be distributing all of that information via email.
Yes, this is the case. It would be worth bringing up your concerns to the owner.
This is a valid concern, IMO, for an AU. Obviously you have less at risk as a cardholder, but security in general is a concern when dealing with any of this (the company has your SSN as a cardholder to issue you the 1099), and how the company handles stuff like that may be a deterrent for you.
I will email the owner and inquire about security practices, and follow up here.
EDIT: His response available via PM. Short answer: It is a concern for AUs, not card holders, though they are informed on signup that it will be shared, I'm not sure to the extent, and is one reason why they need to get the portal up and running.
Also, I was checking on the Discover website just now to see what information they ask for when adding an AU (in relation to my question above), and I noticed the following in their FAQ regarding AUs:
Authorized users can report any lost or stolen cards, obtain account information, initiate billing disputes, request statement copies, make payments and inquire about fees.
I am not sure if the AU would need more information than they obtain through this process in order to call and obtain account information, or request a statement copy, but that gives me a little hesitation as I mull that over to see what that could potentially expose to an AU. I believe the AU will see my name and address on their credit report, or at least I seem to recall reading that previously or discussing that with the old company.
Theoretically in some cases an AU could do something. In actuality, they won't have enough information on you to "verify" when they call in, or be able to do anything.
As I said before in the thread:
The company I recommend has NEVER had an AU get a card and spend money on it, and they've been doing this for ten years. My previous recommendation, who has been in business four years, have also never had that happen. Fourteen combined years, thousands and thousands of tradeline sales, zero instances of this. I'm not worried about it happening in the slightest.
That may have been missed by a lot of people, because I put it in the first post (which I tweaked/updated) as new information, but I'm betting a lot of people who read the old thread skipped that first post since 80% of the content was the same.
That (14 years combined experience with thousands and thousands of AUs) personally moved me past the "slightly worried about the theoretical possibility" to "not worried about the actual real world possibility."
But, of course, do what you're comfortable with. :)