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Equifax began just before the dawn of the 20th century as the old Atlanta credit bureau. Called “Retail Credit Company” in those days, it eventually bought almost all the other bureaus throughout the American south and at one point even employed Welcome Wagon ladies to spy for them. Nicely coifed women bearing coupons and other gifts would greet the new neighbors and then make careful notes for headquarters regarding demeanor, employment, race, religion, national origin, whether the smell of alcohol was detected, and other subjective items deemed in those days to correlate with credit risk. By the time the first version of the Fair Credit Reporting Act was passed in 1971, “Retail Credit” deeply desired to shed its besmirched name and reputation, so its bland new corporate moniker Equifax was installed and history was duly forgotten.

Equifax Information Services LLC
P.O. Box 740256
Atlanta, GA 30374

The TransUnion we know today began when a railcar leasing company by that name decided in 1969 to buy Chicago’s ancient bureau, the Credit Bureau of Cook County, and then subsequently gobbled every other local bureau they could through the 1970s and 1980s. Interestingly, TransUnion today is privately owned by the famous Pritzker family (of Hyatt Hotels fame) and their tony friends through a mysterious-sounding multi-billion dollar entity called the Marmon Group. Lucky bunch. Apparently, buying and selling personal information about others is a highly profitable enterprise. Perhaps the Pritzker grandchildren will never need to hire Lexington Law to straighten out their credit reports.

Post Office Box 2000
Chester, PA 19022

Great Universal Stores group now own Experian. Experian was originally formed when two other consumer reporting entities, TRW and Chilton, combined, then bought every other similar business they could in California, Texas, and other western states, and finally sold itself.


1-888- Experian (1 888 397 3742)

So why do Americans blindly trust three credit bureaus with questionable histories and cutthroat profit-seeking motivations to play such a critical role in almost every aspect of their financial lives? And why do consumers sometimes even feel guilty going up against these? It would be so easy now to turn the discussion to topics like groupthink, status quo, and social complacency, but I’ll resist those academic explanations in favor of a tighter one: Unfortunately, that’s just the way it is.

Of course, by reading this, you’ve already begun to fight back.

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RMCN Credit Services
375 Adriatic Parkway #2205
McKinney, TX 75072
(972) 529-0900 Office (972) 562-0225 Fax
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