Secret Credit Bureau May Be Violating Consumer's Rights
Written by: Kristy Welsh
Scottsdale, Arizona - Innovis, a new credit reporting agency (CRA) shares information only under duress with consumers. CRAs keep consumer profiles which contain a person's entire payment history, and this history is used to determine the hit to a consumer's wallet when shopping credit cards, mortgage rates and insurance premiums. In addition, "the ability to gain employment may be hindered by a poor credit report", says Kristy Welsh, editor of Creditinfocenter.com, "so easy access to one's credit information is vital, especially with the job market so tight."
CRAs such as Experian, Equifax and Trans Union are well known within the industry and consumers have a relatively easy time obtaining access to their credit reports from these companies. Several of creditinfocenter.com's readers report that is was like pulling teeth to get a copy of their Innovis report, while others reported to her that the company had said they didn't give out credit reports as, "their database was being updated." Welsh has read other accounts of people who had to write threatening letters to the company or verbally point out that refusal to give out the information was in violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Many others wrote to her to ask her how to contact Innovis, as the company address is not posted on their website (www.innovis.com).
"Barriers to accessing consumer credit reports borders are illegal and should be brought to the attention of the FTC immediately", Welsh asserts. Even credit-savvy consumers are unaware of this forth CRA, ignorance of which could provide a nasty surprise in the future. With rising incidents of identity theft, victims of this crime may have to relive the credit-cleansing horror with Innovis should all lenders start to use this database as a matter of route. One reader told Welsh that her credit union had pulled Innovis while applying for a car loan, so this practice may be coming sooner than consumers think.
Innovis, owned by CBC Companies, is already referred to as the 4th credit bureau by many financial institutions. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two biggest buyers of home mortgages in the United States have recently begin requiring mortgage companies to report 90 day late to Innovis.
Welsh is urging consumers to complain about Innovic to the FTC. An online complaint form is available at: www.ftc.gov. Consumers wishing to contact Innovis:
Innovis Data Solutions
Post Office Box 219297
Houston, TX 77218-9297