Millions of errors found within consumer credit reports, according to Sen. Nelson

According to a report released by U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) Friday, consumer credit reports are riddled with tens of millions of errors annually.

Consumers disputed more than 224 million mistakes on their credit reports between 2014 and 2016, a 60 percent increase over the previous three years, the report found. More than half of those disputed items were confirmed as errors and fixed by the various credit reporting agencies.

“There’s nothing more frustrating than discovering an error on your credit report, especially when it could result in being denied a loan, paying higher interest rates or even getting turned down for a job or an apartment,” Nelson said. “Unfortunately for consumers, once they’ve found a mistake they have nowhere else to turn but the big three credit reporting agencies. That’s why it’s imperative these companies do a better job of making it easier and faster for consumers to fix credit report errors.”

Among the recommended changes, the report said credit reporting agencies should make the dispute resolution process easier for consumers. This can be done by creating better processes to remove inaccurate information. They should also take a tougher stance against furnishers that provide inaccurate data.

Consumers should check their credit reports with all three leading credit reporting agencies regularly for errors. If one of the credit reporting companies does not fix an error, consumers should report it to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

The CFPB said that between July 2011 and March 2017, credit reports are the third most-complained-about product behind debt collection and mortgages. Consumers logged about 195,800 credit reporting complaints during this period.

Further, the leading credit reporting agencies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion – are among the five most-complained-about companies in the bureau’s monthly complaint reports.