Credit Reporting Bureaus : How You're Protected and Getting Your Free Report
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Credit Reporting Bureaus : How You're Protected and Getting Your Free Report

How credit reports can be used to protect your information. Get a free credit report without paying a sign up page.

Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion are the three main bureaus for credit reporting who keep track of the credit history. Each of them has their own particular methods for calculating the credit score. These bureaus are also known as credit reporting agencies or "CRAs." These agencies provide your credit ratings to the prospective lenders.

What Credit Bureaus Report about You

Records of late payments, delinquent accounts, and closed accounts are compiled by these agencies. Also records related to foreclosures, bankruptcy, repossession, judgments and tax liens are taken into account by these agencies. The credit reports from these agencies may vary. There may be some record of your credit history shown by the report from Equifax which may not be shown by Experian.

Fair Credit Reporting Act

The Act was implemented in 1971. It provided the customers with the right to check the accuracy of their credit ratings. If the consumer notes an error in a report, FCRA permits him to dispute the records of negative information. A time line is prescribed by the FCRA within which the bureau has to investigate and reply in writing to the consumer. It also stipulates that the negative information that is not accurate must be taken off the credit report of the consumer.

Accurate Negative Information

The FCRA also serves to safeguard the lenders from lending money to the high risk debtors. The credit reporting agencies are not permitted to remove any accurate data regarding the credibility of the consumer like bankruptcy records, etc. Federal Trade Commission states that most of the negative records remain on the credit report of the consumer for up to 7 years while those of bankruptcy and other such records stay for about 10 years. There are some credit-repairing agencies which claim that they can clear the negative information off the credit report, which is not true.

Who Gets Your Credit Report

The credit report is not allowed to anyone unless it is supposed to be utilized for a permissible use. If a credit card or a loan is applied for, or you are seeking a job or may be trying to rent your apartment, a credit report is provided to the potential lender or employer or landlord even without obtaining a written permission from you. As per the FCRA, you will receive a free credit report from each agency once in a year.

Your Free Credit Report

You can order the free copy of your credit report from It is an online portal that the bureaus maintain to provide reports or you can also call at (877) 322-8228. A request form can also be filled that is available on the website and mailed to: Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, Georgia 30348-5281.

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