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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/xtn-i-wrote-btw-disclosure-of-facts-can-be-30544852.aspx

Subject:  Re: Another expose on the credit reporting indus Date:  2/15/2013  4:29 PM
Author:  joelcorley Number:  306826 of 310603

xtn,

I wrote, BTW, disclosure of facts can be constrained by trade secret and non-disclosure agreements (contract). Those agreements can be buried in other contracts and be far from obvious...

To which you replied, Oh sure. I'm pretty confident that Joe Blow consumer doesn't have any such agreement with a CRA, or with any of his creditors. In fact most any credit agreement I've laid eyes on in my lifetime - excluding those cocktail napkin agreements used between family members borrowing money from one another - has language such that the consumer specifically agrees to disclosure.

My bigger concern was that the CRAs might require you to agree that the entire report and its contents are proprietary and you do not have the right to disclose it. Actually I've been told by potential creditors that the CRAs require something like that - that the information is proprietary and it cannot be disclosed in whole or in part - but I don't recall a CRA ever requesting that of me. Of course they could slip in such language at some point next time I go to sign up for a free report and I might not notice. Of course most people don't go around showing their own credit report to other people, so this is probably a pointless discussion...

You also said, Other problems I have with the 60 Minutes gig are as follows:

1. They say one in five Americans have a credit report that contains an error. They say that's a 20% error rate. No it isn't. Error rate would be number of trade line errors divided by number of trade lines.


Technically it is an error rate. As they say, "Figures don't lie..." 60 Minutes simply fails to point out that cumulative error in the trade lines actually makes it difficult to produce a low-error-rate report on an individual.

Of course fixing such high error rates requires them to invest resources in processing feedback - which was a valid point of the 60 Minutes piece, even if they didn't say it quite that way.

And, 2. They gloss over the notion of any errors originating with the reporting lenders, and imply errors are only the fault of the CRAs.

Very true. Creditors are the source of almost every error on a report. Of course the problem 60 Minutes is trying to highlight is that the CRAs don't handle feedback well. A good point they made was that if the CRAs don't send the documentation received from the consumer to the creditor for review, why would the creditor change the report? I mean if the mistake is obvious, the creditor might see it and fix it; but without that feedback, a lot of the more egregious problems become unresolvable.

Also, Now I certainly don't mean to be defending the CRAs. I agree with the overall premise of the report, in that they are a giant mess and make it very difficult for consumers to correct info. I just don't like the twisting of fact used to promote agendas. ...

Yes. The reporting appears to be structured to inflame opinions - not simply report how it is...

And, If a CRA comes back saying "Hey, yo