Credit bureaus now under new federal supervision and taking consumer complaints

TULSA - The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is now supervising 30 of the largest credit reporting companies including the big three: Equifax, Experian and Transunion. 

The CFPB also put exam procedures in place.

Experts say this will give people more accurate credit reports.
The aim is to put a stop to credit reporting inaccuracies.
Examiners with the CFPB will watch over whether credit reporting agencies are quickly responding to consumers who report there's a mistake on their credit report.

Remember, you are entitled to receive a free copy of your credit report every year from Equifax, Experian and Transunion.

There are a lot of sound-alike sites to take note: is the only authorized source under federal law.

Other sites may promise a free report, leading you to a free trial that later charges you for credit monitoring.

Here's what you need to check on each credit report:

  • Look for accounts you've never opened.
  • Be sure you name, social security number, address and phone number are right.
  • Any negative marks on your account that were incorrectly reported by a business you have the right to dispute and have those mistakes corrected at no cost to you.

Here's how you make a dispute:

  • Send a letter to both the credit reporting company and the business that was the source of the bad information.
  • Be specific about what is wrong and include any documentation you have proving the correct information such as receipts showing a bill was paid on time and in full.

 CEO says it's a win for consumers to have the CFPB on their side:

Consumers Now Get Federal Help on Credit Report Complaints

Starting today, consumers can file complaints about credit reports with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The government agency can help consumers with "individual level complaint assistance on issues with their credit report."

The CFPB will work with the following complaints: incorrect information on a credit report, improper use of a credit report, a credit reporting company's investigation, problems regarding fraud alerts, or being unable to get a copy of a credit score.

"It will be a great help for consumers to be able to file complaints to the CFPB and have a federal agency on their side," said Bill Hardekopf, CEO of    "Credit scores affect so many areas of our financial lives, it is essential for the report to be correct."

If you have an issue with your credit reporting agency or incorrect information on your credit report, start by filing a dispute from the credit reporting agency. Filing with the agency first preserves some consumer rights guaranteed by federal consumer financial law.

If you are not satisfied with the resolution, then file a complaint  with the CFPB. You will need to provide the original dispute case number when you file with the CFPB. The CFPB website makes this easy by providing links to the dispute page for each agency as well as providing additional contact information.

The CFPB will use these complaints to understand the problems that consumers have with credit reports. This will help shape the CFPB priorities such as comparing credit scores sold to creditors versus those sold to consumers. The CFPB is also beginning to supervise consumer reporting agencies.

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