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Discover it® Secured Credit Card

Cory Santos

| Last updated on February 22nd, 2024

Discover it® Secured

Discover it® Secured
Poor-No Credit Required
BestCards refers to a variation of FICO Score 9, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Please note that the range shown here is our own estimation and not a guarantee of credit needed to be approved for any given card. Recommended Credit: Poor / No Credit Required
Discover Processing Network
None Annual Fee

Discover it® Secured

  • 28.24% variable based on the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
  • 28.24% variable based on the Prime Rate Balance Transfer APR
  • 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR

At a Glance

The Discover it® Secured card is ideal for cardholders hoping to build or rebuild their credit. Responsible use will not only raise their credit score, but it will also earn them 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • 2% cash back at restaurants or gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus 1% cash back on all other credit card purchases
  • Discover automatically matches all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year
  • Easily view your FICO® Credit Score on monthly statements, mobile and online for free
  • Automatic account reviews begin after 7 months of use to see if cardholders can transition to an unsecured line of credit and have their deposit returned
  • No annual fee
  • Regular Purchase APR: 28.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Intro Balance Transfer APR: 10.99% for 6 months from date of first transfer for transfers that post by November 10, 2023
  • Balance Transfer APR: 28.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: 3% of the amount for each transfer that posts at the promotional rate. After that, 5% of the amount of each transfer
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: None the first time you pay late. After that, up to $41
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200
  • You want to build or rebuild your credit with Discover
  • You want 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants
  • You don’t think you should pay an annual fee to boost your credit score

In-Depth Review: Discover it® Secured Credit Card

There is a huge assortment of secured credit cards on the market, but few match up to the impressive Discover it® Secured Card. The card offers cash back, Discover’s Cashback Match, the chance to graduate to the It Chrome, and more – all for no annual fee.

Who Can Benefit from the Discover it® Secured Credit Card?

The Discover It Secured credit card is an ideal credit-building tool for anyone with a bad or no credit history. Secured cards provide a straightforward way to break the cycle of bad credit or no credit by providing easier access to credit. The lack of an annual fee with the secured card is ideal if you are on a tight budget, as it can save you up to $100+ per year as an account holder versus other secured card options.

How to Get the Card


Discover credit card are available to U.S. citizens and residents over the age of 18 and with a valid Social Security Number. Currently Discover does not allow applications from residents with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).

Credit Score Requirement

The Discover It Secured Credit Card does not have a minimum credit score requirement. This means that anyone can apply for the Discover secured credit card, even those with no credit history or past bankruptcies.

Security Deposit Requirement

Secured credit cards differ from unsecured credit cards because they require a security deposit. This cash deposit serves as collateral for the account and determines the credit limit, making secured cards easier to obtain than other cards.

Discover requires a minimum security deposit of $200 and a maximum deposit of $2,500. This credit limit range is comparable to that of many other secured credit cards, although it may be slightly lower than some other cards at the higher end.

Credit Building Benefits

The Discover It Secured Credit Card is designed to help build or rebuild credit. As such, it comes with a selection of ways to help improve your credit score and help you make the jump to unsecured credit.

Build Credit with Responsible Use

Secured credit cards are an excellent way to establish credit for the first time or bounce back from a bad credit score. The Discover Secured Card is one example of a great credit card that can help you build credit with responsible use and graduate to good credit.

Responsible use with a secured card means paying your card statement every month and keeping overall credit use low. Payment history and credit utilization are the two biggest impactors of a person’s FICO credit score. This means that paying on time and keeping your credit use below 30% are the easiest and fastest ways to graduate to an unsecured Discover credit card.

Discover reports your credit history to the three major credit bureaus, so it can help build or rebuild your credit if used responsibly.

Remember, late payments, delinquencies, or other derogatory activity on your credit card accounts and loans can have a negative impact on your ability to rebuild credit.

Graduate In As Little As Seven Months

Discover offers Discover it® Secured Cardholders the opportunity to reclaim their security deposit in just seven months. After this period, Discover automatically reviews the cardholder’s account and credit score to determine if they are eligible to switch to the unsecured Discover it® Chrome Gas & Restaurants card and reclaim their security deposit.

How to Earn Cash Back

Building or rebuilding credit takes time but Discover it® Secured cardholders have the opportunity to improve their credit score while also earning cash back. With this card, they can earn 2% cash back on gas station and restaurant purchases, up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Additionally, they earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

The cash back rewards rate of up to 2% is the same as the unsecured Discover it® Chrome Gas & Restaurants card. This card is similar to the Citi Rewards+® Card, which is also an excellent gas rewards credit card.

Cash Back Match

The ability to earn impressive rewards with a secured credit card is a valuable feature, especially when you consider that the Discover it® Secured Card also offers the Discover Cashback Match after the first year. With the Cashback Match, Discover will match all the cash back earned in the first year, dollar for dollar, with no limit on the total amount that can be earned.

How to Redeem Rewards

Redeeming cash back rewards with Discover is simple. There is no minimum redemption threshold, and your Discover rewards never expire. You can redeem your rewards for:

  • Cash back as statement credits
  • Gift cards
  • Shop with points through Amazon and PayPal.

To redeem your cash back rewards, simply log in to your Discover account and navigate to the rewards section. From there, you can choose the redemption option that suits you best. Whether you prefer to receive cash back, treat yourself to a gift card, or indulge in some online shopping, Discover makes it easy to make the most of your rewards.

Other Benefits

Other notable features of the Discover it® Secured Card include:

  • EMV Chip Technology: Shop safely with a contactless-chip enabled card.
  • Digital Wallets Access: Mobile wallet compatibility with Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, and more.
  • FICO Score: Cardholders also gain complimentary access to their updated FICO® Score courtesy of Discover’s Credit Scorecard.
  • SSN Alerts: Get an alert if Discover find your Social Security Number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites. This service is free but requires a separate activation to use.

Discover Benefits

Discover It Secured Cardholders enjoy a range of security protections and benefits provided by the Discover payment Network, the fourth largest payment network in size, trailing Visa, Mastercard, and American Express. Despite its size, Discover offers many of the same features as these larger networks. Some of the notable features include:

Fraud Protection Freeze It credit lock Cardmember Inquiry Services
No annual fee No foreign transaction fees No over-the-limit fees

Cardholders also enjoy 24/7 access to Discover’s 100% U.S. based customer service agents. Discover is renowned for its exceptional customer care, making this an underrated feature.


Discover it® Secured OpenSky® Plus Secured Visa® Citi® Secured Mastercard®
Annual fee $0 $0 $0
Deposit required $200 to $2,500 $300 to $3,000 $200 to $2,500
Credit limit increases Yes, in as little as 7 months Yes, in as little as 6 months Yes
Credit reporting Experian, Equifax, TransUnion Experian, Equifax, TransUnion Experian, Equifax, TransUnion

Tips for Building Credit

① Check and review your credit reports Ⓐ Check your credit reports from all three of the nationwide consumer reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
Ⓑ Check for negative credit information, like potential fraud or ID theft, accounts in collection, or unpaid balances.
② Pay your bills on time Ⓐ Automatic payments are a great way to avoid accidentally missing a payment.
Ⓑ Splitting monthly payments into two smaller payments can help stretch budgets while ensuring you pay on time.
③ Keep credit use low Ⓐ Credit utilization accounts for roughly 30% of your credit score, so aim to keep credit use as low as possible.
Ⓑ Consider a balance transfer credit card if your credit use is creeping up and you want to consolidate that debt into one new account, typically at 0% Intro APR.
④ Limit new applications Limit any new credit applications to only what is essential (i.e. if applying for a balance transfer credit card).
⑤ Keep old accounts open Don’t close any old, unused accounts. Closing accounts can lower your average credit utilization.

What We Like About the Discover Secured Card

Cash Back for Bad Credit

Perhaps the best feature of the Discover it® Secured Credit Card is the opportunity to earn cash back rewards with subprime credit. Earning 2% back on the sorts of purchases many people regularly make is a great bonus to the already impressive credit-building tools that Discover provides.

No Fees

The Discover It Secured Card charges no annual fee. Additionally, there are no foreign transaction fees when using the card abroad, and no late payment fee for your first late payment (and up to $41 after that). This lack of hidden fees is a great bonus for those building credit, especially since negative credit events can be very costly.

Simple Graduation Pathway

The Discover It Secured also comes with a simple plan to graduation. Discover regularly reports payments to the three major credit bureaus, meaning you can build credit with responsible use.

Even better, Discover the chance to reclaim their security deposit after just seven months. After seven months, Discover conducts automatically review the cardholder’s account and credit score to see if secured cardholders are eligible to switch to the unsecured Discover it® Chrome Gas & Restaurants and reclaim their security deposit.

Having the chance to switch to an unsecured version of the card is an excellent option – especially since switching allows users to contact a Discover customer service representative and change to the Discover It Cash Back or even Discover It Miles, if they so choose.

Things to Consider

Regular APR is Higher than Average

The biggest consideration you’ll need to make with the Discover Secured credit card is that the interest charges with the card can be expensive if you plan to carry a balance. The regular purchase APR is nearly 30%, despite being a secured card. This means it’s not advisable to carry a balance with the card – otherwise it might cost you.

Discover Ratings

How does Discover Financial Services rate as a credit card issuer? Here are a selection of ratings for the bank from experts and the public:

Should You Apply for the Discover It Secured Card?

Secured cards may require a deposit but make no mistake: they are 100% real credit cards. You can use the Discover It anywhere Discover is accepted worldwide.

Secured credit cards typically charge you for the perceived honor of rebuilding your credit with an issuer. On the other hand, Discover views secured credit cards as a vital tool for many Americans and doesn’t charge an annual fee.

Not only that but Discover actually goes the extra mile and allows cardholders to rebuild their credit while they also offer rewards at the same time. The Secured Card earns the same 2% cash back on gas and restaurant purchases and 1% back on everything else as the Discover It Chrome Unsecured Card, which is a great feature.

If you want the opportunity to rebuild your credit score, earn rewards while doing so, and have the chance to get bumped up to unsecured credit card for displaying good financial practices, the Discover It Secured Card is an excellent option to consider.

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