Credit Bureaus Have Own Negative History
Credit Bureau’s Negative History
If your grade school teachers appointed a “hall way monitor” to snitch on the others if they talked out of line you probably had the same opinion as I did of that person. Don’t you sometimes feel as if the Credit Reporting Agencies are the adult version of the hallway monitor? The one who seemed to enjoy getting others into trouble? Don’t you sometimes wonder if they themselves are so perfect while the rest of us are sinners to some degree? Well consider these facts about the Credit Bureau’s negative history. Credit bureau’s negative history goes back a long way in time.
Equifax was “Retail Credit Company”
Equifax is the oldest of the credit reporting agencies. It was first established in 1899 when it was known as the “Retail Credit Company.” Their first mission was to keep a list of people along with an assessment of their credit reliability for their local retail grocer’s association.Credit bureaus then were established by local retail stores and personal finance companies in 1906. At that time they formed what was called “Associated Credit Bureaus” to facilitate sharing of information. There were no effective laws preventing discrimination or storing whatever information they wanted. This information was kept on hand written files with notations from merchants or lenders that were never checked for accuracy. The ability for consumers to respond was minimal at best. The word of the money lender was law and all objections to it were suspect and ignored to a great degree.
Credit Bureau’s Negative History Includes Reliance on Hearsay
Hearsay from neighbors was included and even sought out. Every bit of information that they could find was included. That means your employment history, marital status, age, race, religion, political leanings and negative comments were all fair game. Consumers did not have the right to produce the files in order to check for accuracy or completeness. Positive information was not recorded with the same detail as was negative information. Discrimination was common. Coverage was limited to a few large cities.
In modern times all of the credit reporting agencies have been bought up by corporate giants. Computers today use mathematical models to send information in milli-seconds. Government regulation is turning the screw ever tighter on the abuses that still persist. The Consumer Financial Protection Agency is taking a long overdue and vigorous approach to implementing tighter and tighter supervision. A new day has dawned. Your rights are protected. It’s up to you to take steps to enforce them.