Bank customer requests credit score information

PIPEDA Case Summary #2001-7

[Principle 4.9, Schedule 1, and Section 8]

Complaint

A customer complained that a bank had denied her access to her personal information regarding her credit score.

Summary of Investigation

The complainant had telephoned her branch of the bank in question and asked for her credit score information. A customer service representative at the branch advised her that the bank did not release such information to its customers. On being informed of this complaint, the bank undertook an extensive search of its records and subsequently reported that it could not find any credit product or credit application in the complainant's name and therefore had no corresponding credit score for her. The complainant subsequently confirmed that she had no credit products with the bank and had never submitted any credit application to the bank.

Commissioner's Findings

Issued July 23, 2001

Jurisdiction: As of January 1, 2001, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act applies to federal works, undertakings, or businesses. The Commissioner had jurisdiction in this case because financial institutions are federal works, undertakings, or businesses as defined in the Act.

Application: Principle 4.9, Schedule 1, states that upon request an individual must be informed of the existence, use, and disclosure of his or her personal information and be given access to that information. Section 8 sets out conditions under which a request may be deemed to have been refused.

The Commissioner was satisfied that the requested information did not exist in the bank's files. He found therefore that the complainant had not been denied a right of access to her personal information under section 8 of the Act.

The Commissioner concluded that the complaint was not well-founded.

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