Having your credit checked when you apply for a new cell phone can hurt your credit score. But, if it does, it won't be by much. When your credit score gets pulled, an inquiry goes on your credit report, which typically knocks down your score by five points or less.

Length of Impact

Credit inquiries always remain on your credit report for two years, but depending on which scoring method is used, it could impact your score for a shorter period of time. The FICO score, which is the most widely used score, only counts inquiries within the past year. The Vantage Score counts your inquiries against you as long as they remain on your credit report.