Credit Referencing Agencies - are they a necessary evil?

(Dawn Trespass) #23

My take on this whole thing is they are a necessary evil but if you practice good credit management then you shouldn’t hit problems. The main issue is the chain reaction and stopping it once you’ve had a bad default.
Join something like Martin lewis’ credit club… It shows a list of credit cards and how likely you are to get them plus your Experian credit score. The council’s are getting in on the action and selling social rent payment history to them. Of course the council say you have a choice but make it clear that if you don’t allow them to sell your data it could affect your credit status. It can turn good for you if you pay your rent on time though.

(Kevyn) #24

I’m sure if they use a fake passport number they will get caught out, or be asked for further information at least, when the bank cross checks the passport number with HM Passport Office through the Passport Validation Service.


Councils (or Housing Associations) do not sell rent payment history to CRA.

Experian has Rental Exchange which offer LA/HA access to information back for sharing rental information. Experian don’t pay for it, the LA/HA doesn’t receive income from it.

(Andre Borie) #26

Does this service only work with UK passports or with all passports?

What if we’re talking about a foreign ID instead of passport - would it be any different? I know many online banks (including Monzo) allow you to use ID instead of passport to verify your identity,


The PVS is only for validating UK passports. A friend was recently told that their Canadian passport could not be validated by a Post Office.

(Andre Borie) #28

In this case the passport validation can be foiled easily - in my above scenario you just need to make sure the fake passport pretends to be from a foreign country and job done.


Apparently some banks do further checks when using (foreign) ID documents to open a bank account: When I opened my Natwest account it took them almost a week to verify my ID. When I queried why, I was told that since I had used my ID, rather than my passport, they had to get in touch with the embassy, to confirm authenticity.

Suffice it to say that I was extremely surprised (to the extent where I struggle to believe it). Both with natwest and my embassy…

(Peter G) #30

Sorry to bump this thread, but it seemed like the best place to post this (@alexs / @Rat_au_van do move if it’s misplaced!)

Does anyone know how credit reference agencies (CRAs) work commercially? Do banks pay them for access to their data, or are they paid to provide data to the CRAs? Or both? Or neither? :thinking:

I was musing about this the other day - personal data is collected and processed by the CRAs under the “legitimate interest” clause of GDPR. Presumably the CRAs will be making a profit somewhere (through the effective monetisation of personal data?) so I was interested in how the cash flows, in what direction and how… Interestingly, I couldn’t work out who would pay whom, so I thought someone on here might know / have a view…?