|Received:||4/1/2004 8:00:00 AM|
|Agency:||Federal Trade Commission|
|Rule:||FACTA Free Reports Proposed Rule|
Comments:I am in support of the proposed Free Annual Credit File Disclosures. This regulation will give low income individuals access to their credit report who otherwise are not able to do so under the current system. Currently the 3 CRAs are only required to provide a credit report after an application for credit has been denied and a letter is sent to the applicant to inform him/her. Since ID thieves usually submit applications under false mailing addresses, the actual victim is never notified or even aware of any fraudulent activity. However, one problematic issue remains to be addressed by the FTC- the inconsistency of the CRA's reporting practices. Each of the CRA currently abides by their own standards regarding the information its obtained and kept on an individual's credit report. This inconsistency in reporting allows for misleading, outdated, and wrong information to remain on an individual's credit report until disputed. The power that the CRAs hold over a person's lives is insurmountable since every job application, rental agreement, utilities application, etc. has to run first a credit check before it is approved. Recent data shows that an overwhelming number of credit reports contain wrong information. Recently, affter requesting copies of my own credit report from the 3 CRAs, I found several inconsistencies in each one of the reports. Positive credit information contained in one of the reports was not listed in the other two reports; one of them contained wrong information and the third one had a negative report from an unknown doctor which was over 10 years old. Although, I was not an ID victim I found myself in a lengthy and time consuming battle as I tried to update and correct my information with each one of the CRA. The FTC will greatly serve the consumers by holding the 3 CRAs to a consistent standard of reporting with the addition of regulations regarding truth in reporting, verification of information from the reporting individuals or companies before is entered in a consumer's credit report as well as the length of time information is kept on file. Consistency, verification, and truth in reporting regulations will benefit the consumers by providing accurate and updated credit information to the companies who request a credit report. In combination, Free Annual Disclosures and Consistency in Reporting regulations will give consumers more power over the contents of their personal information rather than to the agencies who are prone to vast reporting errors.