CFPB Releases Examination Procedures for Consumer Reporting Agencies

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On September 5, the CFPB released procedures to guide its staff in examining “larger participant” consumer reporting agencies (CRAs). In July, the CFPB adopted a rule that will allow it to supervise CRAs with more than $7 million in annual receipts from consumer reporting activities starting September 30, 2012. The procedures outline how examiners should assess a CRA’s compliance with federal requirements, primarily under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, relating to (i) using and providing accurate consumer information, (ii) handling consumer disputes, (iii) providing disclosures to consumers, and (iv) preventing fraud and identity theft. While the procedures focus on issues specific to consumer reporting, they include a module that directs examiners to consider whether a CRA offers any other consumer financial product or service that creates other risks to consumers, particularly with regard to Gramm-Leach-Bliley privacy requirements and potential unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices (UDAAP violations).