Credit Reference Agencies

What is a Credit Reference Agency?

A Credit Reference Agency (sometimes called a Credit Reporting Agency or Credit Bureau) reports public and credit-related information about individuals from a variety of sources. This information is provided to prospective lenders, landlords or employers upon request to help them verify an applicant’s identity and in the case of credit agreements, determine how likely they are to default on payments.

In the UK there are four main credit reference agencies: Experian, Equifax, Callcredit and Crediva. Checkmyfile is the only service that allows you to see your credit files from all four agencies, letting you see the bigger picture when it comes to your credit file.

Their addresses are listed below:

  • Callcredit Limited, Consumer Services Team, PO Box 491, Leeds LS3 1WZ
  • Crediva Limited, Customer Services, Global Reach, Dunleavy Drive, Cardiff CF11 0SN
  • Equifax Limited, Customer Service Centre, PO Box 10036, Leicester, LE3 4FS
  • Experian Limited, Customer Support Centre, PO Box 8000, Nottingham, NG80 7WF

Q: Where do they get their information?

A: Credit reference agencies get their information from numerous sources, including payment data from lenders and publicly-available information such as the electoral register and court records. When you consent to a credit check, this information is then shared with the relevant party using the principles of reciprocity, which encourages the responsible use of data to prevent identity theft, fraud and money laundering while reducing the likelihood of lenders losing money as a result of defaulted payments.

Q: What information do they hold?

A: The information held by Credit Reference Agencies covers a wide range of details that can help establish you are who you say you are and what your credit history looks like. This includes (but is not limited to) your name, any loans or credit, accounts in your name, financial associations, defaults, electoral roll listing and judgments against your name.

You can see what information is held by Credit Reference Agencies by checking your credit report. checkmyfile offers the only credit report that lets you see what all four Credit Reference Agencies are reporting, making it the most detailed report in the UK. If you haven't already, you can try checkmyfile FREE for 30 days, then for just £14.99 a month afterwards, which you can cancel online at any time.

Q: Can anyone else can see my information?

A: No. Unless they have your permission to do so, no one can access the information found on your credit file.

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