Data security is a significant concern today. And the security of personal information on credit reports is no exception. Before 2018, Tenant-Net would electronically pull down a proposed tenant’s credit report as part of our background search. We would then forward it to you as part of your background review. Since 1994, this system has worked well, and has worked safely. But, the world has been changing since 1994 when we first started business; hackers are more sophisticated, and more determined than ever to secure personal identity data, and, to use it maliciously. Just ask Equifax, one of the “big three” credit agencies. They had over 140 million records stolen last year.
It’s become evident to us that that the risks posed by downloading credit reports substantially outweighs the perceived benefits. So, we have developed a new process, one that is markedly safer for you, and still assures you access to the vital information found on your applicant’s credit report. So, here’s how it works now.
Once your applicant signs their application authorizing a background check, we will go online to Trans Union (our credit report provider). On their website, we can carefully review your applicant’s full report, including their “Vantage Score”, all without the risk posed by electronic downloads. We confirm basic name, SSN and addressing issues, and will also provide you with the applicant’s Score. If requested, we can even provide the explanation as to why your potential tenant received their score. But, the credit report itself will not be sent to you, eliminating all the risk these reports pose.
As you probably know, a person’s score is considered the best indicator of the likelihood of payment. That’s why banks across the country rely on scores when determining whether to grant a loan, and if so, at what rate of interest.
Vantage is a newer computer modeling system. It is akin to the “FICO” model of risk assessment that has existed for many, many years. A more complete description of Vantage Scores can be found via the link on this page.
This is a new approach for us, but we think this the best way to protect your applicant’s personal identifying information, and to protect you as well from the risk of lost credit records and data.