Check Your Credit Score, And Now Your Privacy Too - Los Angeles Local News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Check Your Credit Score, And Now Your Privacy Too

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"Combajulate!" I don't know what that means. I can't find it in a dictionary. It's a word, though, that restaurant cook Robert Bronow came up with to describe his frustration with the report the Equifax Credit Reporting Company sells personal information to debt collectors and others.

To Carolann Guzman the notion of personal information is sold by the credit reporting agency is "outrageous!" But, it's legal. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act credit reporting companies can collect and distribute information. Equifax has one of the biggest databases according to published reports. And, what they share is everything from employment, salary and insurance information provided by companies about their employees.

This information might be used by a future landlord or employer. 85% of government workers including Department of Defense staff and schools have their information available through Equifax. "It doesn't seem right," says Bronow.

I caught up with him and Guzman at a coffee shop in Encino. He was even more surprised, as was Guzman, to find out that the practice is legal. She says maybe that would change if more people knew about it. Maybe if they did they'd feel, like Bronow, a bit "combajulated!" -- whatever that means.

The reactions on Facebook range from outrage, to not surprised at all. Some call it the biggest privacy breach of our time. Equifax which is one of the nation's big three credit reporting agencies is reportedly selling off very personal information about you to debt collectors and other companies -- and it's legal.

Equifax has accumulated the salary and employment records of more than one-third of US adults

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