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TheStreet Open House

CDIA Says "60 Minutes" Story Misleads On Credit Report Accuracy

WASHINGTON, Feb. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "The promotion released yesterday for a '60 Minutes' story airing this coming Sunday, February 10, demonstrates that '60 Minutes' has selectively interpreted an upcoming Federal Trade Commission (FTC) study to ignore the most significant results," stated Consumer Data Industry Association (CDIA) president and CEO Stuart Pratt.  "The FTC study shows that 98% of credit reports are materially accurate, a fact it appears '60 Minutes' is set to ignore."

The "60 Minutes" promotional spot reveals that the show has been given access to a Federal Trade Commission report on the accuracy of credit reports that has not yet been released to the general public.  Having obtained a copy of the report, CDIA found that the show has missed the most critical point in the research; that the measure of accuracy is tied to the question of when an error has a consequence for consumers, not just when a report contains an error that will have little or no impact on creditworthiness.

"It is irresponsible for '60 Minutes' to be reporting the findings of the study in this manner.  The FTC's study concludes that only 2.2 percent of credit reports have an error that would lead to higher-priced credit for the consumer. It is simply wrong to suggest that 21 percent have errors that would lead to this consequence," stated Pratt.

"It's easy to selectively hype snippets from the FTC study to sensationalize the issue, as '60 Minutes' has done, but the number important to consumers is the one they ignored – that only 2.2% of credit reports contain materials errors.  The shared goal of our members and lenders who report data about consumers is to get it right every time.  We will continue our efforts to push down the material error rate even further in credit reports," stated Pratt.

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