Personal Finance 

List of Free Specialty Consumer Reports

After my post on requesting your CLUE reports, Reader Bob sent me an exceptionally long and comprehensive list of all the specialty consumer reports that you are entitled to every year. When I wrote my first request your specialty report post, I had about half a dozen… this expands the list by a lot.

I was amazed by the sheer number of companies that collect information about me. I was aware of the credit report companies, LexisNexis, and ChoicePoint, but there are a lot of smaller companies collecting data like rental history that I’ve never heard of. While I’ve never been too fearful of the idea of Big Brother, the number of companies collecting information about me, and you, is a little disconcerting!

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How to Request Your ChexSystems Consumer Report

ChexSystemsThe Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACTA) and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) give you the right to review your credit reports every twelve months. Most people are aware of the three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) but did you know that the rule applies to all consumer reporting agencies, which includes several other types of reporting systems.

One of those systems is ChexSystems. ChexSystems is a network of financial institutions that contribute “mishandled checking and savings account” information. This includes everything from how many checks you’ve ordered, if you’ve had any bounced checks, the number of financial institution inquiries, to instances of identity theft and fraud. Whereas your credit report discusses only loan-related items and your credit score focuses on the probability you’ll default on a loan, a ChexSystems report “fills in the blanks” on how you’d be as a customer of a bank.

You can request your ChexSystems Consumer Report here.

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