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Credit bureaus aggregate —or collect and compile— data from creditors, public records, and credit applications on more than 170 million Americans and store that information in databases that are used primarily by lenders during the credit application process.
All three of the major credit bureaus include virtually the same four categories of information. Identifying information includes your name, date of birth, Social Security and telephone numbers, and current and previous addresses and employers.
Credit history information includes your bill-paying history, loans, finance companies, and mortgage companies. Public records information includes information relevant to your creditworthiness, such as tax liens, court judgments, and bankruptcies.
Finally, the inquiries information includes a list of which potential lenders and other authorized parties have received a copy of your credit report within a certain timeframe. This section also includes information on companies that may have received your name and address for the purposes of offering you credit. If you wish to opt out of receiving pre-approved offers from these companies you can call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT or visit www.optoutprescreen.coM.