Discover it® Secured Credit Card Review [2024]: Earn Cash Rewards & Build Your Credit

CREDIT CARDS - SECURED CARDS
Looking for a credit card that offers rewards and helps you improve your credit? We’ve got you covered.
Updated April 9, 2024
Fact checked

We receive compensation from the products and services mentioned in this story, but the opinions are the author's own. Compensation may impact where offers appear. We have not included all available products or offers. Learn more about how we make money and our editorial policies.

If you’re struggling with bad credit or a limited credit history, secured credit cards are one method for building your credit.

Discover it® Secured Credit Card cardholders have a chance to rebuild their credit while earning cashback rewards. Also, Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year. Such perks are what separates Discover’s secured card from other options.

Earn Cash Back While You Build Your Credit

5.0

Discover it® Secured Credit Card

Current Offer

Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year.

Annual Fee

$0

Rewards Rate

Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, automatically. Plus earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

In this Discover it® Secured Credit Card review

Key takeaways

  • The Discover it® Secured Credit Card offers the ability to earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, automatically. Plus earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • It also offers a Cashback Match™ of all the cashback you earn in your first year.
  • After your first 7 months as a cardholder, Discover will review your account to see if you qualify for an unsecured card.

Who should get the Discover it® Secured Credit Card?

The Discover it Secured Credit Card is best for two types of people: those with damaged credit and those with limited or no credit. These people often find it difficult to get approved for an unsecured credit card because of their credit history.

The account is secured with a security deposit. In the case of the Discover it Secured Credit Card, the minimum security deposit is $200.

Discover it Secured Credit Card is for you if you’re interested in a secured credit card that offers cash back.

After 7 months, Discover automatically reviews your account, looking for signs of responsible credit card use. If you’ve done your part, your card can be converted to an unsecured card, and you’ll be refunded your security deposit.

Card basics

Card type Secured / Cash Back
Credit card issuer Discover
Annual fee $0
Welcome offer Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year.
Intro APR 10.99% intro APR for 6 months on balance transfers, then 28.24% Variable

There is also a 3% intro balance transfer fee, up to 5% fee on future balance transfers (see terms) balance transfer fee
Reward rate Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, automatically. Plus earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Recommended credit score Fair, Bad
Foreign transaction fee 0%

Why we like the Discover it® Secured Credit Card: benefits and perks

  • Generous welcome offer: There's a generous sign-up bonus available for new cardmembers with this card: Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year. There’s no limit on how much cash back you can earn either, which makes this a great perk.
  • Earn cash back: Finding a secured credit card with a rewards program is rare. Discover it Secured Credit Card cardmembers earn 2% cash back on gas stations and restaurants (up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter). It also offers unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. Cardholders can earn rewards while establishing credit.
  • Free credit score: Access your free FICO credit score through monthly statements as well as an online account through the Discover mobile app. You can track your FICO score progress as you work to rebuild or build credit.
  • Late payment fee forgiveness: Discover forgives the first late payment cardholders make. Keep in mind that you'll need to pay a late payment fee of up to $41 if you miss a subsequent payment. It also doesn’t charge a penalty APR.
  • Refundable deposit: When you pay your balance in full and close your account, you’ll be refunded your full security deposit. You may also be eligible for a refund if Discover determines during their automatic reviews of your card usage that you're ready to graduate to a regular Discover credit card.
  • No annual fee: Start building your credit without the hassle of an annual fee. There is a $0 annual fee with the Discover it Secured Credit Card.
  • Security features: You'll have the option to activate identity theft alerts that will let you know if your Social Security number is found on the dark web or if a new account is added to your credit report.

What we don’t like about this card: drawbacks

  • Requires deposit: Because this is a secured card, you will need to have the cash available to put down as a deposit to open the account. A minimum security deposit of $200 is required.
  • Limited line of credit: The available credit issued to you will be equal to the size of your security deposit. The maximum credit limit possible is $2,500, but that will vary by individual and will be determined by your income and creditworthiness.
  • Intro APR offer: There is an introductory APR offer on balance transfers with this card, but it is not an intro APR you’ll find on the best balance transfer credit cards.

Earning and redeeming cash back

Best ways to earn

The Discover it Secured Credit Card is special among secured credit cards in that it is a rewards credit card that earns you cash back for your spending. And since the bonus categories align with how many people naturally spend, it means you're earning rewards on purchases you're likely already making so you're still practicing good financial habits and not spending just to earn rewards.

Categories Rewards rate
Gas stations and restaurants (up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter) 2%
All other purchases 1%

Maximizing your redemptions

Redeeming your cashback rewards is very easy with Discover. You can redeem for any amount at any time. Some other card issuers require you to have a minimum of $25 in rewards, for example, before you can redeem.

You can redeem your rewards as a statement credit or have them transferred as cash to a bank account. There are also options for gift cards and charitable donations. You can also use your Discover cashback rewards when checking out on Amazon or paying through PayPal.

Discover it Secured Credit Card FAQs

Is Discover it Secured Credit Card good for building credit?

Discover it Secured Credit Card is one of the best secured credit cards for building credit. Using your card responsibly and making on-time payments will help build your credit.

Can you increase your limit with Discover it Secured Credit Card?

You may be able increase your credit limit if you qualify. There’s a minimum security deposit of $200 to open an account.

You can increase your limit up to a $2,500 maximum limit, and your security deposit has to equal your credit limit. Increases are determined by your income and your ability to pay your credit card bill.

How long does it take for Discover it Secured Credit Card to become unsecured?

This depends on your credit card usage and payment. Accounts are automatically reviewed by Discover after 7 months. If you’ve shown responsible use during that time, you may able to convert to an unsecured card.

Are Discover it Secured Credit Card payments reported to the credit bureaus?

Yes, any payments made on your Discover it Secured Credit Card are reported to all three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

Will the Discover it Secured Credit Card raise my credit score?

As you use your secured credit card responsibly and make regular on-time payments, it’s possible that your credit will start to improve.

Your credit score also takes into consideration your payments with other cards, so be sure to pay all of your credit card bills on time to improve your score.

Other cards to consider

If you're taking the time to compare credit cards, then you should know the Discover card is not the only secured credit card offer that might be available to you. Explore our list of the best credit cards for bad credit and consider secured cards from other issuers that might be able to help you work your way to good credit.

A popular secured credit card to check out is the Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card. This card has a $0 annual fee and only requires an initial security deposit of $200. With this card, you will automatically receive consideration for a credit line increase as quickly as six months after account opening, and you have the option to pick your monthly due date. This secured card is worth considering if you want to rebuild your credit.

Read our Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card review.

Another great secured card is the OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card. OpenSky’s credit card doesn’t require a credit check for approval, and users can set their credit limit up to $3,000 ($200 minimum). This card does come with a small annual fee of $35.

However, the OpenSky Secured Visa comes with all the benefits of a Visa credit card, including fraud protection and acceptance almost anywhere in the world.

Read our OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card review.

Earn Cash Back While You Build Your Credit

5.0

Discover it® Secured Credit Card

Why We Like It

Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year.

See how these cards compare:

Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card
Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card
  • $200 initial credit line after making minimum security deposit
  • Consideration for higher credit line as soon as 6 months after account opening
  • No annual fee
  • Pick your monthly due date
OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card
OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card
  • Credit limit defined by your refundable deposit
  • Choose your limit between $200 and $3,000
  • No credit check when applying

Bottom line

If you have no credit or poor credit, the Discover it Secured Credit Card account could be a good fit for you. It’s one of the best secured cards out there due to its Cashback Match of the cashback you earn your first year. 

If you qualify, you can build a solid payment history and take advantage of the cash back. 

Keep in mind that there is a refundable security deposit, so be sure to have that ready before you apply.

Author Details

Kevin Payne Kevin Payne is a freelance writer specializing in student loans, credit cards, personal finance, and travel. He is a regular contributor to Club Thrifty, Millennial Money, and Student Loan Planner. As the budget and family travel expert behind FamilyMoneyAdventure.com, Kevin recently turned his writing side hustle into his full-time career. He lives in Cleveland, Ohio, with his wife and four kids.

Want to learn how to make an extra $200?

Get proven ways to earn extra cash from your phone, computer, & more with Extra.

You will receive emails from FinanceBuzz.com. Unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy

  • Vetted side hustles
  • Exclusive offers to save money daily
  • Expert tips to help manage and escape debt