frequently asked questions

  • What is a credit report?

    A credit report is a record of information relating to your personal credit history. This is used by credit providers, such as banks and telecommunications institutions, when assessing your credit application.

    Your credit report may contain the following information about consumer credit that you have been given or have applied for:

    • your name, or any alias you use or a previous name, date of birth, gender, current or last known address and two (only) previous addresses, current or last known employer and driver’s licence number
    • information that shows you applied for credit, and the type and amount of credit that you applied for
    • the date you opened your credit accounts
    • the type of credit accounts you opened
    • the date a credit account was closed
    • the maximum amount of credit available to you under each credit account (and if you get a credit limit increase on a credit card, for example, the new credit limit can be shown)
    • basic information about the terms or conditions relating to the credit repayment (such as any maximum term and whether payments are interest-only or principal and interest)
    • the name of your credit providers and whether they hold an Australian credit licence
    • default information (that is, a payment of more than $150 that is at least 60 days overdue and for which you have been served with at least two notices requiring payment)
    • information that shows you have paid the full amount of a default, and the date you paid it
    • information that shows that, because of a default, you have entered into a new or varied arrangement with that credit provider (or another credit provider)
    • information about whether monthly repayments have been paid on time over the past two years (this information can only be supplied and accessed by credit providers that hold an Australian credit licence or by an organisation that is considering providing mortgage insurance for a home loan you have applied for. Telecommunications companies and utilities providers such as electricity or gas companies do not currently hold Australian credit licences. This means they cannot supply or access this information.).
    • publicly available information about your history and activities in relation to consumer credit
    • a credit provider’s opinion that you have fraudulently attempted to get credit or fraudulently evaded your obligations to repay credit, or that you do not intend to comply with your repayment obligations (after taking steps to contact you over a period of at least six months and failing to do so)
    • court judgements about credit provided to you (or that you applied for)
    • information about a bankruptcy, a debt agreement or personal insolvency agreement.

    In addition, in the new comprehensive credit reporting system, your credit report may contain information that shows you have applied for commercial credit, and the type and amount of credit you have applied for.

    You will also be able to see which credit providers have requested copies of your credit report.

  • Why do I have a credit report?

    You have a credit report if you have applied for credit. This includes instances where you have applied for a new phone contract, credit card, loan, mortgage or hire purchase

    Credit providers – such as banks, other financial institutions, and telecommunications and utility companies – use credit reports to help them determine if they will give you credit and, if so, how much. Information from the reports can also be used by the credit provider over the course of the credit relationship.

  • Who else has or can access a copy of my credit report?

    Generally, only credit reporting bodies, credit providers and yourself. As a credit reporting body, D&B can provide information regarding your personal credit report to:

    • A credit provider
    • A current credit provider
    • A mortgage insurer
    • A trade insurer
    • Another credit reporting body
    • A person/body to whom disclosure is authorised or required by or under law
    • A credit provider or a law enforcement authority in connection with a 'serious credit infringement'

    The recipient of your personal credit report will need to advise you that they will be accessing your report. D&B may provide a copy of your personal credit report to a person who has been authorised in writing to act on your behalf.

    For a credit provider wishing to seek a combination of consumer and commercial information, the credit provider will need to obtain your consent.

  • What information is not stored on my credit report?

    The following information will not appear on your credit report, nor will any other information that is not specifically permitted to be included under the Privacy Act:

    • religious or philosophical beliefs
    • health information
    • genetic information
    • racial or ethnic origins
    • political opinions
    • sexual orientation
    • membership of professional associations or trade unions
    • criminal record
    • credit account balances.
  • How do I obtain a copy of my personal credit report?

    You can request a copy of your personal credit report online. Your identity will need to be verified, so please ensure that the details you provide are complete and accurate. You are entitled to request your credit report for free once a year. You can also receive a free credit report if an application for credit was declined in the past three months.

    Order your personal credit report »

    Alternatively, you may complete our Application for Personal Credit Report form to receive a copy of your credit report in the mail. In addition to completing the form, you will need to provide the following documents to verify your identity:

    1. A copy of your Driver’s Licence or Passport or Birth Certificate or Proof of Age card; AND
    2. A copy of a document issued by an official body (such as a utility bill or bank statement)

    D&B adheres to the Privacy Act, Credit Reporting Code of Conduct and the Australian Privacy Principles by providing you with the right to obtain a copy of your credit report.

  • Can D&B advise the contents of my personal credit report over the phone?

    In support of the Privacy Act, Credit Reporting Code of Conduct and the Australian Privacy Principles, all applications must be made in writing (online, email or post) by you to obtain a copy of your credit report.

  • What is a Consumer Credit Bureau?

    A consumer credit bureau is a database of individual consumer credit histories. The credit histories are built up from credit provider information about credit that you have been given or have applied for. These credit histories are disclosed to credit providers when they access your credit report to assess an application for credit.

  • What is a credit alert and how can it protect me from identity fraud?

    Keeping up-to-date with changes to your report is crucial in detecting instances of fraud. Personal fraud costs Australians more than one billion dollars annually, with credit card fraud and identity theft being two of the most common types. Checking your credit report regularly will notify you of any irregularities, such as attempts to open a credit account in your name. If left unchecked, fraudulent behaviour can affect your ability to access credit in the future. D&B offers an alert service that will notify you of changes to your credit report.

    If you believe someone has fraudulently used your personal information, you should:

    1. call D&B to tell them about the identity theft and ask them to put a ban in place, which only they can do
    2. contact your local police station.

    The initial ban period is 21 days, but can be extended if needed. During the ban period, D&B may not share your credit report unless you provide consent in writing or if required by law. If a credit provider requests your credit report to assess your application for credit, D&B will explain there is a ban in place and will not provide the report to the credit provider unless you have consented in writing.

    A ban period may prevent accounts being fraudulently opened in your name, if there is a concern that your identity has been stolen or fraudulently used.

    Order a credit alert »

  • How can I find out why I was refused credit?

    As a credit reporting body, D&B is not the decision-maker. D&B only supplies information. If credit has been denied based on a D&B credit report, you will be advised of this by the credit provider. It is recommended that you regularly review your credit history by obtaining a copy of your credit report.

    You can request a free credit report if an application for credit was declined in the past three months and you have the letter of decline.

  • How can I query information contained in my credit report?

    D&B is committed to handling queries regarding your information in a fair, efficient and timely manner. D&B takes ownership of your query to ensure that that it is effectively managed.

    When dealing with queries relating to your credit report, the below procedures are followed:

    Step 1. Obtain a copy of your personal credit report

    Step 2. Notify D&B's Public Access Centre of your query

    Making a query or notification of change concerning the information contained within your credit report can be made via your account online.

    Login to My Account »

    Alternatively, if you have received your credit report via mail, please complete and submit the Amendment Request form.

    Step 3. D&B will investigate the change requested

    Credit Provider

    Where the information has been provided directly from the credit provider, D&B requires that you provide relevant documentation to support the required amendment or contact the credit provider directly.

    Outcomes

    In the event that the appropriate documentation is supplied, D&B will update your credit report to reflect the change.

    In the event that the entry is correctly recorded and there is insufficient documentation, you can request a statement be included into your credit report advising that the entry has been queried and your report will not be amended.

    Public Record Entry

    Where the information relates to public records, a D&B Public Access Centre representative will request that you provide relevant documentation from the court to update your credit report.

    Outcomes

    In the event that the appropriate documentation is supplied, D&B will update your credit report to reflect the change.

    In the event that the entry is correctly recorded and there is insufficient documentation, you can request a statement be included into your credit report advising that the entry has been queried and your report will not be amended.

    Following these three steps we will provide:

    Notification of the outcome of the query request

    Within 30 days of the change request being lodged, a D&B Public Access Centre representative will notify you of the outcome of the query request.

    Disclosure of Amended Report to Previous Enquirers

    At your request, D&B may provide previous enquirers of your credit report (within the past three months or between the time the error was made and the date of the query request) with notification of the correction.

    In the event that you are not satisfied with the outcome, you may exercise your right to appeal to the Privacy Commission.

    Federal Privacy Commission (Australia)
    Address: GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001
    Hotline:1300 363 992

  • What is an information request and how long does it remain on my credit report?

    An information request is when a credit provider seeks information from a credit reporting body in connection with an application for consumer credit. Consumer credit applications are intended to be used for personal, family or household purposes. This assists you to know who has accessed your credit report and the number of potential applications lodged. Information requests are retained on file for 5 years, from the date of application.

  • What is a default and how long does it remain on my credit report?

    A default is information about a payment to a credit account that is at least 60 days overdue, where the credit provider has notified the individual in writing about the overdue payment and the overdue payment is equal to or over $150.

    A default remains on your credit report for 5 years.

    If your default requires updating, please contact the credit provider. Alternatively, please provide D&B with proof of payment in order to update the default.

  • Why have I received a sample report?

    Based on the search details you have provided, there is no information currently contained in the D&B database.

    A sample report has been provided to inform you the contents of a D&B report, should you have one in the future.

  • How do I place a ban on my credit report?

    If you believe someone has fraudulently used your personal information, you can request D&B to place a ban on your credit report.

    The initial ban period is 21 days, but can be extended if needed. During the ban period, D&B may not share your credit report unless you provide consent in writing or if required by law. If a credit provider requests your credit report to assess your application for credit, D&B will explain there is a ban in place and will not provide the report to the credit provider unless you have consented in writing. However, credit providers will still be able to provide D&B with information.

    If you wish to seek credit during this time, you can consent to the release of your credit reporting information during the ban period.

    Before the BAN expiry date, you can request an extension of the BAN period by providing us with sufficient evidence in support of your request. If we do not receive this information and evidence before the BAN expiry date, we will be unable to extend the BAN period.

    Request a ban be placed on your credit report

  • What is ‘account information’?

    A credit account is one that provides a facility for credit. Account information on your credit report contains information about the credit accounts in your name that have been submitted to D&B by credit providers.

    This information can include the type of credit account/s, credit limit/s, the credit provider/s and the date/s the accounts were opened and closed. This information will remain on your credit report for up to two years after the account is closed.

  • What is repayment history information?

    Repayment history includes up to two years of detail about the monthly payments you have made, or been late to pay, to the personal accounts listed on your credit report.

    This repayment history information is provided to D&B by credit providers on a regular basis.

Error