Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) – which promotes competition while protecting and educating consumers – has published the final agenda with confirmed panelists for the Accuracy in Consumer Reporting Workshop that the FTC will co-host with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on Tuesday, December 10, 2019, to examine issues affecting the accuracy of traditional credit reports as well as background screening reports.

The FTC-CFPB Accuracy in Consumer Reporting Workshop will bring together stakeholders – including industry representatives, consumer advocates, and regulators—for a wide-ranging public discussion on the changes in legal requirements and technological developments over recent years that may affect the accuracy of consumer reports. The final agenda for the workshop will include four panel discussions:

The final agenda also includes remarks by FTC Commissioner Noah Joshua Phillips, CFPB Deputy Director Brian Johnson, FTC Associate Director of Division of Privacy and Identity Protection Maneesha Mithal, FTC Deputy Director of Bureau of Economics Andrew Stivers, Tiffany George from the FTC Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, and a presentation by CFPB Assistant Director for Supervision Policy Peggy Twohig.

The workshop – which is free and open to the public – will begin at 9 a.m. Eastern Time at the Constitution Center, 400 7th St., SW, Washington, D.C.. It will be webcast live on the FTC’s website and tweeted live from the FTC’s Twitter page using the hashtag #AccuracyWorkshop. The final agenda is available on the workshop event page at www.ftc.gov/news-events/events-calendar/accuracy-consumer-reporting-workshop.

Since the FTC released its 2012 study on accuracy in credit reporting, there have been several changes in the landscape that impact the accuracy of consumer reports. In 2012, the CFPB began conducting supervisory reviews over large credit reporting agencies (CRAs), as well as various providers of consumer financial products or services that furnish information about consumers to CRAs.

In 2015, following state investigations, three nationwide CRAs agreed to a multi-state settlement requiring stricter standards for matching records, removal of certain public record information, and restrictions on medical debt reporting. Also, the use of machine learning and alternative data in making eligibility determinations, presented both opportunities and challenges for the consumer reporting industry.

The CFPB and FTC enforce the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) that regulates background checks in the United States and requires a consumer reporting agency – the official term for a background check firm – preparing a consumer report – the official term for a background check – “to follow reasonable procedures to assure maximum possible accuracy of the information concerning the individual about whom the report relates.”

In 2018, the CFPB updated a document that summarizes the rights the consumers have under the FCRA called “A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act” (en Español) to reflect changes made to the FCRA when Congress passed the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. This document summarizes the rights consumers have when undergoing a background check.

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global background check firm – complies with FTC, CFPB, and FCRA regulations. ESR is accredited by the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA), undergoes annual SOC 2 audits, and was named to 2019 HRO Today Magazine’s Baker’s Dozen of Top Enterprise Pre-Employment Screening Services. To learn more about ESR, visit www.esrcheck.com.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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