Salesperson's hastiness results in unwanted credit card for customer

Settled case summary #15


An individual complained that a retail store inappropriately collected her personal information and disclosed it to a financial institution. She also complained that the financial institution used her personal information, and disclosed it to unauthorized organizations, without her consent.


The complainant had gone to the retail store to make a purchase. She provided her personal information to the salesperson for credit application purposes. The salesperson entered the information into the computer system, and printed out a contract. After reviewing the terms of the contract, the complainant decided that she did not want to continue with the credit application or make the purchase. She tore up the contract and left the store.

A short time later, the complainant received a credit card from the financial institution. She immediately contacted the store, which apologized to her. Although she was told that she would not receive any further notices from the financial institution, she continued to receive its correspondence.

The Office's investigation established that the application is to be filled out and signed before the information is entered into the computer system by the store's salespeople, where it is forwarded to the financial institution for adjudication. In this case, the salesperson keyed in the information before asking for the complainant's signature, and the store did not inform the financial institution of the error. The application was approved, and an account was established with the institution.

The financial institution informed the Office that it did not share any of the complainant's personal information with a third party. It apologized to the complainant, removed its inquiry and trade line from her credit file, and purged all information relating to her and the transaction at the store from its system.

For its part, the store took appropriate action to ensure its salespeople obtain the applicant's signature before entering his or her personal information into the computer system.

Both the complainant and the Office were satisfied with the actions taken by both organizations. The complaints were therefore considered settled during the course of the investigation.

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