There are a lot of myths about what the credit bureau is and what they can and can’t do. The objective of this blog post is to educate you on what the credit bureau is and what is their purpose. A credit bureau is a centralized source of credit information on consumers and businesses. To make it simple, it is a clearinghouse that buys and sells information. There are three major credit agencies, Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. There is also a fourth secret bureau, Innovis Datat Solutions that you should not ignore because lenders use this company to pre-screen your credit offers. Therefore, if you have negative items on their reports you will not get pre-approved offers. Additionally, there is another credit reporting agency that is considered the 4th largest and it is also secret is NCTUE which stands for National Consumer Telecom & Utilities Exchange. Their data report is a record of all telecommunication such as TV services and utility accounts.
So what are the myths concerning credit bureaus? First myth is that they are the ones who turn you down for credit. This is far from the truth. Credit bureaus only report what is given to them by their members (lenders). They do have a universal system whereby each member can report their information in a uniform way so everyone can interpret the contents the same way. However, they do not. The lender you are applying to for credit will or may turn you down due to incorrect information that is reported to the bureau and used in calculating credit scores. This is why it is possible for credit bureaus to report the wrong information.
Another myth is that credit bureaus can remove marks reported by lenders from your credit report. This False. They can’t remove information from your credit report without the lender’s consent or for reasons pertaining to the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
Getting a Free Credit Report
Everyone is entitled to obtain a free credit report once a year from annualcreditreport.com. Here are some other ways you can get free report.
Conditional free report from any credit bureau:
- Unemployed and seeking employment
- Receiving public welfare assistance
- Suspect errors due to fraud
Now here is the beauty of the third condition. You can place a fraud alert on your credit report by contacting just ONE credit bureau, and it will trigger them to contact the others. Then you can get a FREE credit report for all three bureaus.
Here are the numbers:
Equifax: 800-685-1111 For FRAUD Alerts: 888-766-0008
Experian: 866-200-6020 For FRAUD Alerts: 888-397-3742
TransUnion: 800-888-4214 For FRAUD Alerts: 800-680-7289