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How to dispose of Consumer Report Information

In an effort to protect the privacy of consumer information and reduce the risk of fraud and identity theft, a federal rule requires businesses to take appropriate measures to dispose of sensitive information derived from consumer reports.

Any business or individual who uses a consumer report for a business purpose is subject to the requirements of the Disposal Rule. The Rule requires the proper disposal of information in consumer reports and records to protect against “unauthorized access to or use of the information.” The Federal Trade Commission is the agency that enforces the Disposal Rule.

Among those who must comply with the Rule are:

  • Consumer reporting companies
  • Lenders
  • Insurers
  • Employers
  • Landlords
  • Government agencies
  • Mortgage brokers
  • Automobile dealers
  • Attorneys or private investigators
  • Debt collectors
  • Individuals who obtain a credit report on prospective nannies, contractors, or tenants
  • Entities that maintain information in consumer reports as part of their role as service providers to other organizations covered by the Rule

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