What’s on your credit report?
Equifax reveals consumers confuse fact with fiction when it comes to understanding their credit report
Understanding the information held on a credit report is vital for anyone applying for a mortgage or even opening a mobile phone contract. However, new research* from credit information provider, Equifax, highlights just how misinformed many consumers are, with popular myths being held as fact.
Information people thought was on a credit report when it isn’t...
- Criminal record (32%)
- Child support agency information (30%)
- Fines, such as speeding and parking (21%)
Information people thought wasn’t on a credit report when it is...
- Electoral roll information (52%)
- Shared financial commitments (48%)
- Mobile phone agreements (47%)
“Our research illustrates that many people are confused when it comes to what information is included on a credit report,” explains Lisa Hardstaff, Credit Information Expert at Equifax. “The fact that 52% didn’t recognise that electoral roll information is included on their credit report and that 32% thought parking fines were, shows a clear lack of understanding. It is important that consumers are in the ‘know’ when it comes to what information makes up their all-important credit history.”
The Equifax credit report checker helps consumer understand what is and is not on their credit report:
What is ON your credit report?
- Name, address and date of birth
- Electoral Roll Information – used to verify a person’s name and address and to establish the length of time you have lived at an address
- Credit Account Information – your accounts are classed as 'settled', 'active', 'defaulted', or 'delinquent'
- County Court Judgments or Decrees – held on your credit report for six years from the date of the judgment
- Searches – where a lender has performed a credit check on you will be kept on your credit report for 1 year
- Shared Financial Commitments also known as Associates – anyone you specifically share a financial responsibility with, such as a joint bank account
- Current Account Information – only credit aspects of your current account will be shown on a credit report such as the overdraft limit and balance as well as the manner in which this is maintained. A positive balance will not be displayed for these accounts.
- CIFAS Protective Register (UK’s Fraud Prevention Service) – will only appear on your credit file if you have registered with the Protective Register. It aims to detect and prevent fraud.
- Student Loans – only pre-98 defaulted loans will appear on your credit report
What is NOT on your credit report?
- Third Party Information – members of your family who live, or have lived with you do not appear as long as you don’t share any joint financial commitments
- Savings Accounts, Fines, Child Support Agency, Medical History, Criminal Records, Salary
One of the best things consumers can do to gain a clear picture of what information is held on their credit file is get a copy of their Credit Report. Hardstaff concludes, “Apply for a copy of your Credit Report before applying for credit so that you can check all the information is correct and up to date. Armed with our key facts and tips, consumers can help boost their chances of getting the best deals and staying in control of their finances.”
The Equifax Credit Report is accessible for 30 days free simply by logging onto www.equifax.co.uk. If customers do not cancel before the end of the 30 Day Free Trial, the service will continue at £9.95 per month, giving them unlimited online access to their credit information and weekly alerts on any changes to their credit file. It also includes an online dispute facility to help them correct any errors on their credit file simply and quickly.
*Equifax Credit Score Survey – 3,000 consumers surveyed through Atomik Research June 2015
For further press information, please contact: Clare Watson, Cecile Stearn, Parm Heer or Wendy Harrison at HSL on 020 8977 9132 / Fax: 020 8977 5200 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Equifax is a global leader in consumer, commercial and workforce information solutions that provide businesses of all sizes and consumers with insight and information they can trust. Equifax organizes and assimilates data on more than 600 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide. The company’s significant investments in differentiated data, its expertise in advanced analytics to explore and develop new multi-source data solutions, and its leading-edge proprietary technology enable it to create and deliver unparalleled customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax operates or has investments in 19 countries and is a member of Standard & Poor's (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. In 2013, Equifax was named a Bloomberg BusinessWeek Top 50 company, was #3 in Fortune's Most Admired list in its category, and was named to InfoWeek 500 as well as the FinTech 100. For more information, please visit www.equifax.com.
Equifax Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.