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I-Team 10 Consumer Watch: Credit reporting errors

Posted at: 02/12/2013 8:18 PM
By: Brett Davidsen

Have you checked your credit report lately? There could be errors on it that could be costing you money.  A new government study is warning you and begging you to take a close look at your credit report for any errors. That's because it found that one in five people had a mistake on at least one of their three credit reports.

I-Team 10 heard a little about this report Monday, but wanted to take a closer look at it and what it means and give you some ideas about what you can do to protect your pocketbook.

Your credit report has information about your finances and your bill paying history and from that you receive a score. And that score will determine if you can get a credit card or a car loan or a mortgage and at what interest rate. So it's important to make sure your report is accurate.
 
The Federal Trade Commission looked at more than one thousand credit reports issued by the three major credit reporting agencies. The FTC found that one in five or 20% of consumers had some kind of error and five percent of consumers had mistakes that could lead them to pay more for some financial products.
   
So how do these mistakes happen? Maybe you have a common name and someone else's financial information gets posted to your report. Or maybe, a social security number is entered incorrectly. It could be minor, but then again, it could be something much bigger. So it pays to go over your report at least once a year with a fine tooth comb.

News10NBC's Brett Davidsen said, “This is important to do. But do most people give this much thought?”
 
Lynette Baker, CCCS of Rochester, said, No, it's something that really falls to the bottom of your list. Everyone's so busy. And unless you have an issue, you don't really think about it every day. Or you might think, that's something i really should do, but you just don't until something happens."

Anybody can check their credit report for free. The FTC and the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Rochester both recommend the site, www.annualcreditreport.com