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What is a credit reporting agency?

Credit reporting agencies

  • compile credit histories on prospective borrowers,
  • provide credit reports to consumers and lenders, and
  • provide other related products and services.

Information in a credit report may include payment history, number of credit accounts, balance of accounts, and length and place of employment. Lenders often use these reports when making decisions on extending credit.

Last Reviewed: April 2021

Please note: The terms "bank" and "banks" used in these answers generally refer to national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches or agencies of foreign banking organizations that are regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). Find out if the OCC regulates your bank. Information provided on should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion of the OCC.

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