A Closer Look At Credit Reporting Agencies
Credit agencies are those companies that collect information about consumers and their credit histories. These companies collates information from public records, creditor's information, and other valid sources. Although the law allows credit reports and histories of a certain individual be available to both future and current creditors, the collection and the use of these valuable information for any other purpose is highly regulated. This is the primary job of credit companies. They do not have the power to either give or refuse credit.
Currently, there are three credit reporting agencies. These are Equifax, which is based in Atlanta; Experian, based in Texas; and TransUnion which is in Philadelphia. Let's take a closer look at these companies.
Equifax is a 107 year old credit company. Currently, it is operating in 13 other countries including Chile and El Salavador. Theirs is an established company which secures commerce globally through information management, authentication business, and other marketing services. Their clients are not only financial institutions but healthcare, brokerage, and telecommunications companies as well. Currently, the company rakes in USD $1.4 billion in profits.
Aside from providing credit reports, Equifax has value-added services consumers may find helpful. They have what they call Scorewatch and Score Power.Scorewatch is the continuous credit score monitoring system which notifies customers when there is a change in their overall credit scores. Score Power, on the other hand, is the instant online access to credit scores and credit reports itself.
Experian is also a globally-recognized institution with offices around the world. Aside from North and South America, it also has branches in Europe and in the Asia Pacific. Equifax is a subsidary of the London Stock Exchange GUS L. It established ConsumerInfo to serve as the main provider of credit history and credit report to consumers. It is founded in 1995 and have delivered more than 8 million reports to its 1.9 million members.
Experian has the CreditExpert tool which is their own version of the daily monitoring of credit reports to consumers. And since the law only provides for a single free copy of one's own credit report once a year, Experian can supply it to its paying members without limit. Personal credit reports can also be accessed instantly through their website.
TransUnion is present in about thirty countries around the globe. They currently employ 4000 employees in their business centers. The company was built in 1968 as the parent holding company of Union Tank Car Company, which, just for the record, is a rail car leasing corporation. Since then, it has grown spontaneously. Currently, it is a wholly owned independent credit bureau.
TransUnion supplies consumers with their credit reports which could include personalized tips so that the individual can improve his score. Debt analysis can be integrated in as well. They also have the ability to give consumers the credit reports from the other 2 bureaus combined. Just like Experian and Equifax, they too offer unlimited access to one's own credit report for a fee.
These are America's three credit report bureaus. They have the full access to one's credit history. Although they have power over it, consumers still has the right to know how they are using these personal information. Privacy is still very much protected. It is just a matter of knowing your rights regarding these sensitive information.