Everything You Need to Know About Transunion
Transunion is one of three major credit reporting agencies in the United States. Transunion Chicago is the company’s headquarters, however, there are locations all over the world providing employment opportunity to tens of thousands of people. The company operates by collecting pertinent credit information on customers and using that information to calculate a credit score. That credit score is then used by lenders in combination with a Transunion credit report to assess risk for providing loans to those who apply. Transunion also provides credit reports to customers upon request which can be used to identify toxic credit accounts and take steps to increase the customer’s overall credit score. Customers can access one free credit report each year, but they may also access their credit report more than once for a small fee. Transunion makes it simple to check your credit score by gathering information and accounts for you, which takes a huge amount of the time and hassle out of the process.
Transunion’s mission statement is “to help people around the world access the opportunities that lead to a higher quality of life, by helping organizations optimize their risk-based decisions and enabling consumers to understand and manage their personal information”. The company states that they are committed to understanding the evolving needs of their customers and providing solutions that meet those needs. The company partners with a multitude of companies including banks, healthcare providers, property managers and more to provide accurate and complete information on potential customers for lending. Finally, Transunion prides itself on providing more than just data, but also insights to ensure both lenders and customers can make informed decisions about credit.
Transunion offers a multitude of products and solutions to serve their customers. This company is both a Business to Business and Business to Customer facing company, meaning that they provide products and solutions for both businesses who chose to pay for their services, as well as to consumers whose credit information is collected and reported. Solutions and products that the company aims to provide to its business customers include:
- Customer Credit Reporting: A database of customer credit information accessible for personal credit reasons or to lenders to facilitate smart investing. This is the primary function of Transunion, and this freedom of information helps both lenders and consumers to make smart credit decisions.
- Marketing and Audience Segmentation: Provides companies with consumer financial spending habits in order to better understand their behaviors and target audiences more effectively. By using this information, companies are able to understand and target various demographics to bring in more applications for lending.
- Debt Recovery: A solution offered to businesses to help them in their debt collection strategy, using data, storing, and analytics to help companies more effectively predict lending risk. This product also includes contact solutions to help companies reach debtors in an effort to attain a collection. Having a process for debt collection allows companies to recover more profits that may be lost without a plan for collection.
- Identity Verification and Authentication Services: Tools to help protect organizations from fraudulent activity allows companies to make safe lending decisions based on consumer-provided information to predict fraudulent activity. This product also combines analytics to more accurately predict risky consumer behaviors that may end up being a fraud. Protecting both businesses and consumers from fraudulent activity saves time and money spent resolving fraud cases on both sides of the lending equation.
- Customer Analytics: Data and customer analytics provide valuable insight for a better understanding of the markets. This allows businesses to make more lending offers, adapt to market changes, and grow a company in size and profitability. Understanding the market better will help businesses to save time and money by more accurately targeting who will apply for loans, and who is most likely to accept them.
- Healthcare Patient Access: Engagement and workflows to help businesses engage and inform customers early in the financial process allow the company to effectively collect on more accounts. By keeping clients informed and educated about their financial obligations early in the process, businesses can help ensure that fewer accounts go into collections, and less time is spent trying to collect on accounts.
- Digital Lending: A product that replaces that traditional lending application product, this allows companies to automate, improve its speed to market numbers, creates new opportunities to reach customers, provides a smoother overall experience for the customer, and introduces autopay features. This tool benefits business by reducing the time and resources used in the lending process and benefits consumers by providing them with more tools to manage their loan.
- Portfolio Management: This credit tool helps manage portfolios to create a risk-reward balance. The tool can help businesses increase profitability by allowing them to more quickly assess changes and provide actionable solutions. By more quickly analyzing market changes, both lenders and consumers can make investment decisions to ensure they come out on top.
- Customer Acquisition: This solution allows businesses to identify top performing clientele and acquire them to increase the company’s profit margins. Identifying consumers who have a longer history of good credit history, or those who will be more likely to take out larger loans helps companies to achieve maximum profitability.
Transunion is committed to providing products as solutions to companies and customers alike, and the list of products and tools available to meet those needs are extensive. Consumers can access a variety of free tools on the Transunion website, and there are even more products for businesses that are more specialized and can be integrated for a business’s specific needs.
Transunion found its start in 1968, working on holdings for the Union Tank Car Company, a railroad leasing company. One year later, Transunion purchased the Cook County Credit Bureau. This prestigious and strategic merger eventually attracted the attention of an even bigger holding company, the Marmon Group, who eventually acquired Transunion in 1981. With the Transunion product and the backing of a major Credit Bureau, it was only a matter of time before the company attracted even bigger fish, and that eventually happened in 2010, when the company was acquired by lending giant Goldman Sachs Capital Partner, in conjunction with Advent International. Only 5 years later, Transunion was launched as a publicly traded company.
Through a series of partnerships and acquisitions with data agencies and technology companies, Transunion was able to evolve their brand and launch a series of products that revolutionized their ability to cater to clients in the financial space.
The company has also been subjected to many financial laws and regulatory changes throughout the years. The Fair Credit Reporting Act was put in place in 1970 and was legislated to ensure that credit reporting agencies were adhering to a number of standards, including accuracy, fairness and to ensure that consumer information was kept private and protected. This act is now enforced by the United State Federal Trade Commission. This act also includes protections for lending agencies, such as requiring reporting agencies to disclose all information which will allow a lender to qualify a consumer for a loan.
There are a multitude of ways to contact Transunion. The sites contact page lists the Transunion phone number, fax lines, email support and even ground mail options for consumers needed to get in touch with a representative. Additionally, due to a 2015 Fair Credit Reporting Act ruling in California, Transunion and all other major credit reporting agencies are required by law to investigate and correct any reports of misinformation or fraudulent activity on a credit report. The company has dedicated staff members and contact lines for handling all disputes and are Federally mandated to resolve any reporting issues within 30 days of receiving a dispute filing.
How to Report an Error on TransUnion
Reporting an issue on your credit report to Transunion is easier than ever. The top contact option on their sites contact page is specifically designated for those looking to dispute claims with the company. Should you find yourself in a position of needing to dispute Transunion report information, you can complete the entire process by filling out a Transunion dispute form online. If you would rather use ground mail, instructions for sending in a dispute include mailing in a report containing:
- Your Name: Provide your name as it would appear on your credit report. If you typically use your middle name, for example, provide your middle name on your report.
- Account Number: This is the account number of the credit line that is being affected by the faulty claim. Again, it’s best to be as thorough as possible, but it is equally important to keep your personal information secure. If you do not feel comfortable providing a full account number, you can also provide a partial. You can take a cue from financial statements and show the last portion of the account number that would appear on a bill if applicable.
- Your Address: This should be the address shown on your credit report or financial statements for the affected account.
- Your Transunion File Number: Your file number will be a series of numbers found on your credit report relating to the account that will be needed when completing the dispute process. You can also find this number online by going to the dispute portion of the website and clicking on a past of pending dispute. From there, click “check dispute” and you will find the number in the upper right-hand corner.
- Your Social Security Number: Remember, be cautious with your personal information! If you are not comfortable sending your full social security number, then the best practice is to send the portion typically used in identity verification services- usually the last four digits.
- Your Date of Birth
- The Name of the Company the Reported the Claim You are Disputing: This information can be found on your credit report, as well. The name of the company may be the name of the lender on a student loan marked late, a collection agency that didn’t mark your account as closed, or a bank who owns your car loan for example.
- The Reason for Your Dispute: This may be one of the most important items in your report. You must include all the details you have regarding your dispute. You should also include any documentation you have backing up your claims, such as a receipt of payment for an account that has been marked as unpaid.
- Corrections to Personal Information: Occasionally, you may find that the reason you are filing a dispute is because of incorrect personal information which is affecting the account. However, even if that is not the reason for your report, it is still advised to correct any incorrect information you see on your report.
Once you have completed your report, you can mail it to the Transunion address listed on the website specifically for disputes and they will begin the dispute process. Keep in mind, the process will not begin until your dispute is received, so if you chose to submit via ground mail, you will be adding additional time to the overall process. If you have any questions or concerns or need help at any point during the dispute process, the company provides customer service over the phone, so you can get your questions answered quickly and ensure that you are following the process correctly.
To summarize, Transunion is one of three major credit reporting agencies, but that is not all that the company does. It also provides solutions and products to businesses looking to maximize their profitability in a competitive financial field, as well as provide support to consumers. Consumers can do an annual free credit score check to ensure that their Transunion credit score is accurate and reflects their history with credit and lending and portrays the proper risk assessment to lenders considering loaning money to them. The company also employs people all over the world, and Transunion careers are excellent opportunities to grow within an enterprise that is absolutely fundamental to financial operations.
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