Many consumers are aware that the big three credit reporting agencies — TransUnion, Experian and
But what's less known is that there are many other national specialty consumer reporting companies that collect data on us, and they, too, must provide a free report annually to us. These companies track such things as our employment, medical payments, tenant history and insurance claims. Creditors, landlords, employers and others review reports when making decision about us.
The CFPB said last week it found that some companies didn't list toll-free numbers as required or that they didn't have a streamlined process for consumers to request their report.
The federal agency warned several companies by letter that they may be in violation of the law.
The CFPB says there are hundreds of reporting companies in the country. It has posted the names of 40 on its website. Not all must provide a free annual report, but they do at least have to provide a report for a reasonable price — nor more than $11.50 right now — to consumers.
All of this is important because if a report contains errors, you could end up paying more for credit or being denied an apartment or job.