Under the Data Protection Act you have the right to see what information is held about you by the credit reference agencies.
Agencies hold details of your credit history which may be used by lenders to help them assess whether you are an acceptable risk for credit. Many lenders use credit scoring systems for this purpose. The credit scores lenders give you are not part of your files held by these agencies, but this information may be used as part of the lender’s scoring system.
If you are refused credit, lenders will tell you the main reason why they have turned you down, for example, because of the information provided by a credit reference agency. You can request a copy of your credit file by writing to the credit reference agency enclosing £2 and giving details of your full name and your addresses for the last six years. The lender will provide the name and address of the agency used.
If the details on your file are correct they cannot be removed. However, you can ask for your file to be amended if it contains information about other people who you have no financial connection with, or if information is incorrect. The procedures are different in each case.
The Information Commissioner has a free leaflet called No Credit? which sets out these procedures. It can be obtained by writing to No Credit Leaflet, PO Box 99, Nelson, BB9 8GS, or phone 0870 4421 211.