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Who is CreditRegistry?

CreditRegistry is Nigeria’s largest credit bureau and the industry pioneer serving members since 2003. It is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Nigeria to provide credit bureau services to financial and non-financial institutions. Our innovative solutions help our subscribing members to drive revenue growth, recover debts and mitigate risks through utilization of information, analytics and world-leading fraud prevention services.

What is a credit bureau?

A credit bureau is an institution licensed to collect credit information from lenders, non-lending organizations and available public sources on a borrower’s demographics, credit history and performance. The credit bureau compiles information on individuals and business entities regarding their credit performance details and produces it into an insightful credit report; this credit report is then made available to creditors to make informed financial business decisions.

Are credit bureau activities regulated?

Yes. In Nigeria, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) issued Guidelines for the Licensing, Operation and Regulation of Credit Bureaus in Nigeria under section 57 of the CBN Act No. 7 OF 2007 in October 2008, and this was revised in November 14, 2013. Furthermore, there is a Credit Report Act 2017

What organisations can access my credit information?

Businesses that request your credit information must first subscribe to the credit bureau and accept the laws that govern access to credit information. In general, with your consent, any business that advances credit or performs background checks can obtain your credit information.

• Commercial banks
• Mortgage finance institutions
• Insurance companies
• Micro-finance and SME lenders
• Other financial institutions
• Asset management companies
• Suppliers of services on a postpaid basis e.g. telecoms, utility, etc.
• Retail stores
• Landlords
• Manufacturers

What can my information be used for?

Your information can be accessed for the following reasons:
• Processing an application for credit
• Reviewing an existing facility
• Opening of new accounts
• Prospective and current employee background checks
• Tenancy contracts
• Grant or review of insurance policies
• Acceptance of guarantees
• Contracts of prepaid service (e.g. electricity, telecoms, etc.)
• Any other purpose allowed by legislation
According to the guidelines, the reasons above are permissible purposes for which your (the data subject) information can be accessed.

Can anyone else access my information?

An information provider to the credit bureau can access your data for the purposes stated above. You can also order your credit report and instruct the credit bureau to share it with a specific individual or business.

What is a credit report?

A credit report is a detailed report of an individual's credit history prepared by a credit bureau. Credit bureaus collect information and create credit reports based on that information, and lenders use the reports along with other details to determine loan applicants' creditworthiness. Some information contained in a credit report include but not limited to:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Unique identification number
  • Type of credit account(s)
  • Credit payment limits and balances
  • Credit performance
  • Credit score
  • Other public records

What is the benefit of having a good credit report?

Some benefits of having a good credit report are:

  • The ability to obtain credit without collateral
  • Easier and faster access to credit
  • Lower interest rates
  • The ability to acquire ‘big ticket’ items such as houses, cars and household goods without having to save up for extended periods just to pay cash
  • A reputation as a responsible and accountable person
  • Demonstrate trust to buy now and pay later
  • It shows your integrity

How can I get a good credit report?

You build a good credit report by:

  • Taking credit responsibility
  • Paying your debts as at when due
  • Being truthful with any information supplied when applying for credit

What do I have to do to subscribe to your credit bureau?

Is there any law binding your operation?

The Credit Reporting Act 2017 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

Who is a data subject?

A data subject is any person or business whose data (demographic or credit data) is being collected and processed by the credit bureau.

Who are credit information providers?

Businesses that have subscribed to the credit bureau and have executed a data exchange agreement. With this agreement in place, they are permitted by law to report demographic and credit information of their customers to the credit bureau – the bureau does not create, modify or delete data without the instructions from the information providers.

Can my company just obtain credit data and not share our credit data to the bureau? I fear other lenders will poach my customers

The credit bureau concept is proven and has been working for centuries. It works because of reciprocity.
Data sharing is for the protection of your organisation. Information providers report full data, both performing and non-performing data. By reporting full data to the credit bureau:
1) Good performing customers will not be overextended credit. When your customer approaches another lender for credit, your customers’ debt to income can be better assessed so that they are not unexpectedly granted more credit than they can afford to repay.
2) Bad performing customers are restricted from getting new credit until they have paid off their outstanding non-performing loans first.
Moreover, data is not shared unless your customer approaches another organisation for credit and gives the lender consent to obtain a credit report.

How accurate is the information provided by a credit bureau?

The credit bureau obtains information from a variety of reliable sources and is the custodian of such information. Data accuracy is important and information providers are required to submit complete, correct and current data to the bureau. There are two types of errors that can be introduced to the credit bureau if information providers report incorrect data:

  • Type I error occurs when a borrower is incorrectly deemed creditworthy, when in fact, the institution should not give the borrower a loan. 
  • Type II error occurs when a financial institution denies a loan to a creditworthy borrower

The credit bureau has dispute processes available to support correcting both type 1 and type 2 errors when they occur. It is important for you to regularly check the completeness, correctness and overall accuracy of your credit file on the credit bureau. If you find any problems, contact us at [email protected].

How secure is my data with a credit bureau?

The credit bureau has extensive data and as such it has physical security measures in place to ensure that no unauthorized access takes place. All communication and transfer of data from the bureau to an authorized user are encrypted. The Central Bank of Nigeria and third-party auditors regularly examines and audits all credit bureau processes, procedures and technology to ensure that all data are secure.

Who can access my credit information?

Any organisation subscribed to the credit bureau who has the permissible purpose to run a credit check with your consent can access your credit information. You may grant consent for a variety of reasons such as: credit enquiry, background check, verifying your identity, tenancy, employment, etc.

Through which mediums can I use CreditRegistry’s services?

Our services are available through API (AUTOCRED), web application (CIMWEB) and batch processes.

Can I access my personal credit report?

Yes. Go to CreditRegistry CreditConnection (https://creditconnection.creditregistry.ng) to place your order directly. You can also contact us at [email protected] and our team will be happy to attend to you.

How do I correct discrepancies in my credit report?

Contact us at [email protected] if you notice a discrepancy on your personal CreditRegistry credit report. Do the following:

  1. Make a formal request for the credit bureau to review the information which it holds and which you are certain to be incorrect.
  2. Provide the credit bureau with copies of any documents, deposit receipts, etc. which supports your claim.
  3. The credit bureau will investigate your complaint requesting the original information provider to substantiate their data submission where relevant and report back to you on their investigations.
  4. Obtain a new credit report to confirm information is as expected.

Can I randomly search for anybody on the bureau because I have access?

No. The law stipulates a need-to-know basis and consent from the data subject before accessing anybody’s credit report.

How do I get my customer’s consent to check his/her credit status?

Organisations should update their contract form indicating that credit checks will be done as part of their processes for the customers to sign off. While for existing customers, your organisation is required to notify your customers in writing.

What medium can I use to communicate a credit check to my customers?

This can be achieved in many ways such as having a notice on customer statements/ invoices, company website, newsletters, receipts, social media channels, registration forms, email, SMS, etc. Our subscribers should state that it uses the services of CreditRegistry, a credit bureau licensed by the Central Bank of Nigeria.

How can CreditRegistry help my business?

Our innovative and robust solutions help our subscribers to efficiently and effectively manage the entire credit cycle to grow revenue and reduce credit risk.
As a modern credit bureau company focused on innovative solutions, we provide a bouquet of customer acquisition and risk management services in order to drive your business through the entire credit cycle (i.e. from ‘planning’ to ‘write-off’).

Our products include: Credit Report, SMARTScore, CreditConnection, Portfolio Monitoring Report, Enhanced Search List, Campaign Report, Skip Tracing Report, BVN Discovery Service, Predictive Analytics, Credit Monitoring Service, Market Insight Report, Supplier/Business Background Checks, Employment & Address Verification, KYC and Dud Cheque Report, Customer Acquisition & Enrolment, Customer Identification & Fraud Prevention, Credit Risk Gap Analysis & Consulting and Credit Risk Management Training. For more information about our services, visit www.creditregistry.ng/services.

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