The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is calling on the nation's top credit card companies to make credit scores and related content freely available to their customers.
A report released by the CFPB today found that accuracy issues top the list of credit reporting complaints the Bureau received from consumers. The CFPB also warned companies that provide information to credit reporting agencies not to avoid investigating consumer disputes.
"Credit reports and scores can determine the terms of people's mortgages, whether they qualify for auto loans, or if they are eligible for different credit cards," said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. "Making consumers' credit scores freely available on their monthly statement or online makes it easier for them to spot problems with their credit report. We will continue to work to ensure that credit report disputes are fully investigated, errors are fixed, and consumers are treated fairly."
Most Americans have a credit file. Credit reports and scores can determine everything from consumer eligibility for credit to the rates consumers pay for credit. Because of the significance of these reports, consumer reporting agencies have been a major focus for the CFPB.
The three biggest credit reporting companies, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, each maintain files on over 200 million consumers. These files are based on information supplied by thousands of providers, also known as data furnishers.
Fewer than one in five Americans check their credit report in any given year. Without a regular review of their credit report, consumers may not notice errors in the data or even identity theft. Recently, some credit card companies have made credit scoring information freely and regularly available to their customers on monthly statements or through online access.
CFPB Director Cordray recently sent letters to the nation's top credit card companies urging them to follow suit by making credit scores and related content freely available to their customers. A regularly available credit score may prompt more Americans to review their credit standing and pull their free annual credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com.