#ItsMyReport | Spread the word:

Credit reports should be free

Let's change the law

Sign the petition
18,449
say yes!

Credit reports control your access to credit cards, mortgages, housing and jobs, but they're also poorly understood, difficult to get hold of, and cost money.

That's why we're calling for:

  • Free annual credit reports and scores
  • Lenders should give a specific reason if you're rejected because of your credit report, along with a free copy of the report used
  • Standardised credit scoring between the credit agencies

Join the petition

We need your help to change the law.

Join the petition and help us make credit reporting free, fairer, and fit for purpose.

Want to learn more?

Read more about why credit reporting has to change, how the current system works, and how we're going to bring about change in our questions and answers section below.

Don't worry, we won't use this for anything outside the campaign. We just need to see where our campaigners are from.
Your email will only be used for correspondence relating to the campaign, and will not be used for any marketing activities.
Why are you signing the petition? Leave a comment and we will feature it on our comments wall below.
daniel says 24 May 16

it shouldnt cost me to know whats stopping me from improving my credit. its not the easiest thing to improve and its just as difficult getting clear cut advice on how to improve my personal scroe

phillip says 19 May 16

FREE

Muhammad Ali says 17 May 16

we need it free

Kazim says 16 May 16

Freedom of informations act surely apply's to info on our selves I feel its a crime for people to hold information on you without disclosing it I.E they know my credit score but I must pay to access it? that's ludicrous.

Gary says 14 May 16

With these modern times, anything you need to make a bigger purchase you need to have good credit to get the best deal, whether its a car, furniture, home improvement etc so why should we have to pay to access these reports that determines if we can or cant have credit?

Dm says 13 May 16

I feel that credit reports should be free and easier to understand plus an explanation as to why a person is rejected for a credit card, loan etc

Christopher says 11 May 16

It's unbelievable companies can make money from withholding my information

kathleen says 11 May 16

free my credit report

Jemima says 11 May 16

Had to pay £5.95 in addition to £9.95 to obtain updated credit score - this should be free as it is MY information not an agency's.

GILLIAN says 11 May 16

Basic Noodle reports are free and I get that every month but I refuse to pay for my own information which they choose to store without my written consent so it should be free.

Susan says 10 May 16

I think it's dispicable that people have to pay for information about themselves. This should be free to all.

Ben says 9 May 16

THIS SHOULD BE FREE!!

Afuah says 8 May 16

I think credit reports should be free

Bindi says 8 May 16

Credit reports should be free. Remember folks credit SCORES are just made up random numbers and mean NOTHING.

suzanne says 7 May 16

Free free

David says 7 May 16

I'm a firm believer that our credit information belongs to us, not some company and we should not have to pay to see it.

A says 6 May 16

Just another rip off. Having to pay for information on yourself is a joke!

ANDREW says 6 May 16

Charging £15 for an in depth view of your credit report is not good enough, some do provide free reports but only once a month which is not good enough.

David says 5 May 16

I believe we should have the right to freely view our own personal information. Especially something so vital as finance. I ruined my score 6 years ago as I was given bad advice and didn't understand credit files. Give the young a chance and move to a world with good credit and understanding.

Name says 4 May 16

This should be just the start, mobile phone companies aren't governed to the same rules as Banks, building societies and lenders. Mobile phone companies do not have to inform the bill payer of a default being registered and many refuse to do so. A default can be as serious as CCJ in some respects and can be applied for something as simple as missing a bill or small fee.

Ian says 4 May 16

Free credit reports for all!!!

Lesley says 3 May 16

Ripped off having to check credit report after being refused credit. No wiser after. . Possibly refused as self employed

daniel says 2 May 16

A credit report is ones personal private information. Companies collecting, processing and analysing this information should give free access to the most up to date credit report they hold against the individual requesting to view their own credit report.

cassandra says 30 Apr 16

Make credit reports FREE for all!

charlie says 29 Apr 16

it's your credit score why should you have to pay to view your own credit score!

Adriana says 29 Apr 16

Everyone should have free acces to his credit score.

Arthur says 28 Apr 16

I object paying for the mistakes of others.

Lewis says 27 Apr 16

Why should it cost someone to know their credit score

Helen says 27 Apr 16

Definitely should be free! Loads of people I know don't even know a how important your credit report is! It should be free and easily accessible to everyone.

David says 25 Apr 16

I too am a victim of Lloyd's bank wrongly assuming that I can't pay my debts. I bought a new car £30K put a £10k deposit down and in 6 months paid in full. Now I find I am blacklisted for another year or so. It is totally wrong.

paul says 24 Apr 16

I totally agree. Why should we have to pay to access our information.and its always outdated information

Kerry says 24 Apr 16

Who gave permission to hold this information? Government departments need legislation to hold information,

Sarah says 23 Apr 16

15 pounds when you are a person in need of financial support is disgusting .

Angela says 23 Apr 16

Help low wage earners to improve their credit rating. £14.99 per month with Experian is alot of money when you are trying to improve your score

miamii says 23 Apr 16

Yes

Paul says 23 Apr 16

Why should information about me be hidden from me?

Ita says 22 Apr 16

This information is being used for commercial purposes, why am I paying for it as well?

Elizabeth says 21 Apr 16

Credit ratings should be revealed by banks upon request. Especially as a credit card holder, we should have the right to understand our credit score in order to make good decisions.

Richard says 27 Nov 15

why should I need to pay for information that is based on myself!? It is only right that we can all see the scars from the whip of the slave masters.

PAULA says 27 Nov 15

I totally agree. Why should we have to pay to access our information.

Ashley says 26 Nov 15

I need to check my report due to debt. but i cant afford to pay my debt and now i am being asked to search for my own information???

Ian says 26 Nov 15

There are some many errors on the data that a free and automatic correction of records should also be enforced

Judith says 26 Nov 15

Absolutely ridiculous that we have to pay for this information which should be free to all, regardless of their financial ability!! 'Freedom of Information Act' was not designed to be a money making scam!

money online says 26 Nov 15

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ilker says 26 Nov 15

Also Errors on credit reports should be corrected with a matter of urgency.

Ann says 26 Nov 15

Everyone should face reality and there is no better way than reading your own credit report.

faye says 25 Nov 15

I agree with anyone that thinks it should be free. Id like to know what iv done wrong if I have' then I can work towards correcting it & making it right. Everyone deserves a chance at that there for it should be free it may help spur people into ironing these faults away & I'm sure there would be more people a little more maybe Alot more who would feel greater for having this sacred secret credit report about themselfs. I think certain statistics might change just a tad..for the better :)

Ahmed says 25 Nov 15

These changes are past overdue.

Robert says 24 Nov 15

I have banked with Halifax -50years.I am told in branch I am classed A1 customer( best rating I am told) After applied for holiday credit card only,I was denied.Local branch tried to enquire why I was refused but head office would not say why! I can only surmise that since I have paid off my mortgage,never had a loan,I always pay off credit card so as not to incur charges - this has gone against me Head office said they do not discuss why I have been declined - how ridiculous!!!

Richard says 24 Nov 15

It is wholly wrong that companies who buy false debt, Are then able to put a default on your credit file even though it is in dispute, and you have to pay to find out !!!!!

Marc says 24 Nov 15

Why should you have to pay for something that is already yours?

Navaneeth says 24 Nov 15

I was rejected credit, because of errors in my credit reports, credit report companies say "it is not their responsibility to correct the errors on their report", until the individual finds it when credit is rejected. Also companies should say what is the exact reason for rejection. When a wrong information is stored about you and you are rejected credit based on that report and you need to pay for the credit report to see what was told about you and then correct the report and wait for 90+ days for reapplying any credit. This seems like the worst way to tell something about someone.

Terri says 24 Nov 15

It's wrong that to keep a healthy score, you have to pay to check your own personal details. This could put people off doing it and therefore stop then improving their rating

joel says 23 Nov 15

wrong way they calculateing credit score.

Alan says 23 Nov 15

Free credit file access is vital, not only to enable consumers better to manage their affairs, but perhaps more importantly to increase awareness of the number of errors that reports contain.

billy says 23 Nov 15

Let it be free..!

bulent says 23 Nov 15

.

Katrina says 23 Nov 15

Free credit report

Steph says 20 Nov 15

Spending £14.99 a month to read something in order to look into buying a house! Does this reflect on my credit score that I'm paying this! Does it help towards buying a house! NO it doesn't. Sick of paying out for something that i look at 1 every 3 months

Lynn says 20 Nov 15

Make finding out your score, free!

david says 20 Nov 15

Yes, I am for free credit report.

Jacolyn says 19 Nov 15

I lived for 4 years with an erroneous deficit on my credit report before I paid and uncovered the mistake by British Gas, I lost a significant amount of money because of it. Paying for credit reports is an unnecessary barrier to being in financial control.

Robert says 18 Nov 15

How do they expect us to learn to manage our money if we can't see our mistakes

Chathushka says 17 Nov 15

This is obviously something to be given free. Why would you have to pay to see what you have or not done?

Shane says 16 Nov 15

Why should we have to pay to make sure credit rating companies have your details correct?

steven says 16 Nov 15

Great idea

Nicholaus says 14 Nov 15

It's my data.

Richard says 13 Nov 15

why should i pay for my own information held by private companies

John says 12 Nov 15

MAKE THIS FREE IMMEDIATLY.

Jack says 12 Nov 15

My credit eligibility is not for sale by any company

dale says 11 Nov 15

Data and information regarding me should always be available freely with out re-occuring costs.

Garfield says 10 Nov 15

im am signing the petition because i feel we should all able to get free credit reporting

Lovette says 10 Nov 15

Everyone should have easy access to an accurate credit score. So they know where they stand, monitor their position and make necessary amendments if necessary. Its not right to have to pay to get informed about your information.

David says 10 Nov 15

I've long felt it to be ludicrous that something which is so important to people as their credit standing should be kept hidden from us unless we pay someone for the privilege of seeing it! Surely this is a basic right?

Craig says 9 Nov 15

freedom of information

john says 8 Nov 15

should be free to me as it's my data, others that need to use it should pay.

dipak says 8 Nov 15

I would like to keep my information correct and ensure it is not abused by corporation.

Karl says 8 Nov 15

Credit reports should be completely free!

Vinod says 7 Nov 15

I do believe that credit score should be freely available to everyone.

Carine says 7 Nov 15

For years, I've wondered why I should pay to access my personal data. Hope this petition will help us all in pushing for a change of the law.

Ian says 5 Nov 15

Only want to see what they see about me and my finances.

Alan says 4 Nov 15

Experion and like companies should be penalised/fined for holding and using incorrect data about an individual. This will 'encourage' the companies to tighten their procedures, reduce their errors and the inconvenience they cause to individuals as a direct result of their incorrect data.

sandeep says 3 Nov 15

I think it is really unfair that we do not have unrestricted access to a report that can make or break a chance to own a house and its result can take over means of living.

Nathan says 3 Nov 15

We should also be able to see what a lenders specific criteria are before applying for products

TONY says 3 Nov 15

ITS MY REPORT

Nathan says 2 Nov 15

Have had a nightmare with credit. After 20 years in the military with no credit problems ever, because I move home I have credit problems

Toni-ann says 31 Oct 15

It's information about me so I should be allowed to view it free of charge.

russell says 30 Oct 15

Should be free

Stephen says 30 Oct 15

If you need to get your credit improving why should you not see your ownn personal datafree and how its affecting you. Also if you are struggling and wish to see anything that maybe be holding you back you have to pay expensive fees to access your own personal data

Josiah says 30 Oct 15

People with poor/bad credit may also be the same people with low incomes. We should all have an equal right to build our credit without breaking the bank.

Jennifer says 29 Oct 15

Credit reports should be free as it your information

Bob says 29 Oct 15

I would like to see my credit account

Vipul says 28 Oct 15

My report for me should be free, it should be charged to other agencies, like bank etc to view.

gilbert says 28 Oct 15

if you having trouble paying bills then why should have to pay for credit checks on yourself rip off at £14.99 a mouth.

abid says 28 Oct 15

It should be free

Brett says 27 Oct 15

You shouldn't have to pay to access your OWN credit report

Darren says 26 Oct 15

A bank or employer can run a credit check for nothing, and then refuse me, yet I can't see on what grounds. How is this fair? Most of the time, you look at your report because you have been declined, which could mean that you are in debt. How does having to pay £9 or£15 a month help?It is not fair and should be clearer and more accessible. It should be free.

Daniel says 26 Oct 15

This should be a free report without any penalties for viewing it. Just another way to make money off the workforce.

Jean says 26 Oct 15

Totally agree these reports should be free. Especially given the amount of money banks make and. Rights under the Data protection act

Ben says 26 Oct 15

At least make the statutory report cover all data and be delivered instantly online - monthly subscription for this is not value for money.

Latest News

Do you know your credit score?

78 % YES
22 % NO

Why credit reports need to change...

76%

of consumers have applied for financial credit

41%

of these have never checked their credit report

20%

haven't checked their report as they didn't know they had one or that they could check it

27%

of consumers who haven't checked their report are put off by the cost

Questions and answers

What does a credit report contain?

Your credit report is like a personal profile that lenders use to assess you. Here are some things you can expect to find in your report.

Address details

Along with basic personal details like your name and date of birth, your credit report will show your registered address details. Make sure these are correct.

Electoral roll

Being registered on the electoral roll to the correct address is vital to a healthy credit profile, so make sure these details are accurate.

Credit report history

Your credit report will show you who's been looking at your credit report. Spotting unauthorised searches is key for ID fraud and security.

Bankruptcies and CCJs

Your report will also show details of any bankruptcies, insolvencies or County Court Judgements (CCJs) against your profile.

Notices of correction

If you spot any mistakes on your report you can ask the lender to remove them, but you can also leave a correction on your report for lenders to see.

Connections

Credit reports will also show details of other people you are financially tied to like partners or spouses. Again, it's crucial to check this is accurate.

Fraud notices

If there are any warnings against your file from CIFAS, the UK's fraud prevention service, they will also be shown on your report.

Why does credit reporting need to change?

Credit reports play a huge role in our lives. A mistake on your credit reports can mean getting rejected for a credit card and can lead to riskier and more expensive types of credit. It can also mean being charged a higher interest rate, being rejected by a landlord, or even missing out on a job.

Despite this, our research shows that lots of us are in the dark when it comes to credit reporting.

The confusion around credit reports is hardly surprising. It costs money to access your report, there is no standardised credit score scale in the UK, and financial providers are under no obligation to explain why someone is rejected for credit.

We think that's wrong.

Other countries have been able to introduce measures to make credit reports more transparent and easy to access to the benefit of the average person. We believe the time has come for the UK to do so as well.

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What is the goal of the campaign?

Our research shows there is a huge amount of confusion around credit reports. We believe that a few simple changes could make the world of difference, allowing us all to take ownership of our credit files.

At the heart of this campaign is the belief that we are all owners of our personal data. We should have easy access to this information, especially when it is used to make decisions about us. That's why we've called the campaign 'It's My Report.'

We want to see three fundamental changes:

  1. Every person in the UK should get free access to their full credit report containing their credit score once a year - the equivalent of a financial 'MOT' - allowing them to verify if their information is correct while also having the ability to fix any incorrect details that may be negatively impacting their overall score.

    This sort of system is already in place in other countries like the United States, Canada, Australia and Germany. We think it would help make credit reporting more transparent and remove some of the confusion that currently prevents people from taking ownership of their credit file.

  2. A change in the law to make it mandatory for a person to be given the specific reasons why they have been turned down for credit, if that decision was based on something found in their credit report. This should be alongside free access to the full report used to make the decision

    Our research found that 32% of people who applied for credit have been rejected. In a lot of these cases we believe that, had people had access to the report used to assess them, they could have corrected mistakes, or worked towards improving their credit file for future applications.

  3. A standardisation of the credit score scale used in the UK, so your score always means the same thing, regardless of the company you get it from.

    Currently credit scores give you an indication of where you stand ('excellent' or 'poor' for example), but each credit reference agency has its own system. A standardised scoring system would allow you to immediately know where you stand.
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What is the current credit system?

There are three credit reference agencies in the UK - Experian, Callcredit and Equifax. Each of these agencies collects information on your repayment history with a variety of different creditors, from banks to mobile network providers.

To see your whole credit file you have to get a copy of your report from each agency. You are entitled to a statutory report from each agency, but it will cost you £2 per request. Each agency also has a monthly, more in-depth report that you can order. These cost more, although many have a free introductory period.

Crucially your monthly credit report contains your credit score, which helps you assess how good or bad your file is. We think this score should be included in the free annual reports we're calling for.

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How will the campaign work?

We will be publishing new research to highlight the problems the UK's current credit report system has created.

We are also inviting you to sign our online petition calling for change.

Finally, alongside other consumer organisations, we will be directly lobbying the major credit report companies, banks, lenders, the government and the FCA, to drive through the changes with your support.

If you've joined the campaign we'll keep you up-to-date with our progress through emails, Twitter, or check back to see the latest news section of the site.

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Who will benefit from change?

We believe these changes will lead to a fairer, more transparent credit reporting system in the UK. Our research shows a huge amount of confusion about credit reporting which could be easily fixed with a few simple changes.

Credit reports are vital to so many parts of our lives, but they are also difficult to access, inconsistent, and lacking in transparency. We believe the changes we have proposed will benefit everyone, from the credit report companies and the banks and lenders that rely on their information to anyone looking for credit.

Trust Online is particularly useful if you are in dispute with a lender regarding a CCJ or old debt that has been paid, but your records have not been updated, or if a judgement against you has been issued to an old address where you no longer reside.

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What affects your credit score?

Your credit rating is affected by more than your repayment history, although that is certainly one of the biggest factors. Creditors also want to know about your personal circumstances to assess how reliable you are to lend to.

There are a number of other factors that will influence your credit rating:

  1. Whether you are registered to vote
  2. Whether you have any credit cards you're not using
  3. If you've made a high number of credit applications in a short space of time
  4. If you are registered on the electoral roll
  5. If you move house frequently
  6. If you have existing joint accounts open
  7. Substantial fluctuations in your income
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What should you do if you find an error on your report?

Mistakes on your credit report can lead to you being rejected for credit or being charged a higher interest rate. Typical mistakes include not being on the electoral roll, having outstanding debts on a card that doesn't belong to you, or bad debt on a joint account from a former partner.

If you find an error on your credit report you can raise a complaint with the credit agency who have 28 days to respond, during which time a notice is added to your file so creditors know what's happening. If the dispute isn't changed you can add a notice of correction to your file. This notice will be seen by creditors.

You can also check whether information held against you on official registers is up to date. Trust Online covers registers of CCJs, administration orders, child support agency liability order, high court judgements, fines defaults from Magistrates courts, Tribunal Awards and a number of other registers in Scotland, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, the Isle of Man and Jersey.

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How can you improve your credit report?

There is a range of things you can do to improve your credit rating:

Remember that your credit file is seen differently by different lenders and can take a while to mend itself. The measures listed above aren't instant fixes, following these basic rules should improve your credit rating in time though.

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Who are the credit reference agencies?

The three main credit reference agencies are Callcredit , Equifax , and Experian

Experian

0344 481 0800 or 0800 013 88 88.

Experian
Landmark House
Experian Way
NG2 Business Park
Nottingham
NG80 1ZZ
United Kingdom

You can get your statutory Experian report online or by calling 0844 481 8000.

Equifax

0845 603 3000

Equifax Credit File Advice Centre
P.O. Box 1140
Bradford
BD1 5US

You can get your statutory Equifax report online or by calling 0844 335 0550.

Callcredit

0845 366 0071

One Park Lane
Leeds
West Yorkshire
LS3 1EP

You can get your statutory Callcredit report online or by calling 0870 060 1414.

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How will we know when we have succeeded?

We will measure the success of our campaign by tracking whether consumer understanding of credit reports increases and, more importantly, whether consumers take control of their information.

Ultimately, we will be successful when we see real change in the credit report industry in the UK, with all three of our goals achieved:

However these are only changes that will help people access their report. The real aim of our campaign is to spread awareness of credit reports and encourage people to learn and take control of their own credit files.

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Statutory credit reports vs. monthly reports

One of the most confusing things about credit reports is the distinction between 'free' reports, the £2 statutory reports, and paid for monthly services (often with a free introductory period).

First off it's important to understand there is no single credit profile for you. Each of the three credit reporting agencies keep their own credit file on you, and each agency deals with different lenders (although big lenders use all three). To see your entire credit profile you need your report from all three.

Your £2 statutory credit report provides all the information that lenders will see when they request your credit file from the reporting agency in question, but it doesn't contain your credit score (although we think it should, that's one of the things we're calling for).

To see your entire credit file you need to get your statutory report from each of the three agencies:

Experian

You can get your statutory Experian report online or by calling 0844 481 8000.

Equifax

You can get your statutory Equifax report online or by calling 0844 335 0550.

Callcredit

You can get your statutory Callcredit report online or by calling 0870 060 1414.

Alternatively if you want extras like your credit score and things like ID fraud alerts, the monthly paid for services provide these. Experian's Credit Expert service is the most well known and costs £14.99 a month, while Equifax's monthly service costs £14.95, as does Callcredit's 'Credit Compass'.

To further confuse things there are other services like Checkmyfile , UKCreditRatings and MyCreditMonitor which compile your reports for a monthly fee, as well as providing alerts.

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What should you do if you have bad credit or debt?

Total personal debt in the UK is now at an estimated £1.4 trillion, which means many of us are relying on debt and credit to make ends meet.

We believe that if consumers have free access to their own credit report it will help them take control of their credit profile, as well as being able to correct any errors that may be limiting their access to credit. But what should you do if you're currently in debt or have bad credit?

If you have a bad credit profile take a look at our How can you improve your credit report section for some basic tips on improving your credit report.

If you're in debt we have a dedicated section of debt help advice.

For those in severe difficulty we also recommend StepChange, a registered charity which offers free, confidential advice and debt management support to anyone who's struggling with debt. They also provide an online debt advice service.

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