What is a Credit Reporting Agency?
A credit reporting agency is a private company that collects data and maintains historical information on consumer and business credit records. Credit reporting agencies also provide consumers and credit providers with credit reports.
Australia Credit Reporting Agencies
|Agency||1. Request Ban||2. Order Report|
|Experian||Ban Info & Email||Report|
|Dun & Bradstreet (D&B)||Ban Info & Email||Report|
|Equifax (formerly Veda)||Send email: banrequestAu@equifax.com||Report|
Tasmanian Residents: If you reside in Tasmania, or have done in the past, it would also be recommended that you contact Tasmanian Collection Services on 03 6213 5555
*Placing a Ban with Experian: When you request a ban with Experian this will automatically generate a free credit report. Furthermore Experian will allow a client to extend a ban for any length of time ie: 3 months, 6 months, 12 months, 10 years. When an extension is requested with Experian, a free credit report will automatically be generated. Furthermore, a free credit report can be ordered at any time (there are no limits to how many reports a person can request in the space of a year).
*Placing a Ban with Equifax (formerly Veda): Send an email to banrequestAu@equifax.com with the following:
- The driver licence number (copy of the document is NOT needed, just the number)
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Current and previous address history
- Mention the reason for the ban request ie: identity theft
New Zealand Credit Reporting Agencies
|Agency||1. Request Suppression||2. Order Report|
|Centrix||0800 236 874||Report|
|Dun & Bradstreet (D&B)||0800 362 222||Report|
|Equifax (formerly Veda)||0800 698 332||Report|
Tip: iDcare Contact Log – can be used to keep a record of your engagement with organisations, this may become quite valuable in criminal, civil or administrative proceedings both planned and unforeseen.
What is a Credit Report?
A credit report is a point in time snapshot of what credit related transactions you have made where the provider of credit has checked your history. You are entitled to one free credit report every year.
What is a Credit History?
A credit history is a ‘picture’ of how you use money. If you have ever owned a credit card, taken out a loan, or applied for a mobile phone, chances are you will have a credit history. Your credit history may include information such as loan inquiries, current loans, defaults, bankruptcies, and as of March 2014, details about whether you pay your bills on time. This ‘picture’ is used by credit providers when deciding whether or not to approve your application.
Why do I Need a Credit Report?
A credit report is a safety mechanism to assess whether someone has attempted to obtain credit in your name. A yearly credit report is also a way you can monitor your history to ensure no errors are on your report.
Note: If you request your credit report, your current contact details will then become available to any lenders, creditors or debt collectors who check your report.
How do I Obtain a Free Credit Report?
If you suspect your identity has been compromised, iDcare believes it is important to request a free credit report from ALL THREE agencies as some may gather credit information that others have missed. All Australian and New Zealand citizens are entitled to a free credit report every twelve months. Please click on the individual agency links above which will take you directly to their free credit report application pages. For more information go to OAIC Fact Sheet 31 or if you would like help understanding the process please call iDcare.
Note on costs. You may be charged a fee if you have already obtained a report from the same credit reporting body within a twelve month period. You may also be charged a fee if you require an urgent copy of your credit report – usually within 10 working days. Credit reporting agencies offer additional products that may be useful in your case. Please refer to the agencies’ websites for further information.
What if my Identity Has Been Compromised (Credit Bans)?
Bans (AU), Supression (NZ) – If there is risk that your identity may be fraudulently used, it is recommended that a ban/suppression be placed on your file – this is a free service. During a ban/suppression period, credit bureaus state that credit providers will not be able to access your file, nor can new information be added. In Australia the initial ban period is 21 days, and 10 days in New Zealand. The bureaus state that this may be extended indefinitely but you will need to provide proof of fraudulent activity ie: police report number. It is important that you contact all 3 credit reporting agencies.
File Note – Dunn & Bradstreet, Centrix and Experian report that they offer the ability to add a file note in conjunction with a ban/suppression (Veda says they do not offer this service). A file note is a flag on your file to notify the viewer that there has been a compromise to your credit report. Experian refers to a file note as a ‘personal statement’.
For more information on suspected fraud go to OAIC Fact Sheet 37 or call iDcare.
WARNING: If you believe your computer, phone or other Internet connected device has been targeted (including email), iDcare recommends that you use a different system and email address when communicating with, and sending documents to, the credit bureaus – unless this risk has been addressed. If you are unsure about what to do, please call us.
What if my Credit Report is Incorrect?
If your credit report has information that is incorrect (not fraudulent) it is recommended to contact the credit provider or credit reporting agency. For more information on corrections go to OAIC Fact Sheet 32, or call iDcare and we will assist you in understanding the process further.
If there is unknown (fraudulent) activity on your report it is recommended that you contact the relevant credit agency and the credit reporting agency. For more information on fraudulent activity go to OAIC Fact Sheet 37, or call iDcare and we will assist you in understanding the process further.
While we work to collect and provide the most up-to-date information available, organisations will occasionally change their protocols without notifying iDcare. For further details it is best to contact iDcare.