My girlfriend at the time had a phone through AT&T WS for roughly 4
years, before SunCom was bought out. She later added her mom to her
account as they shared the family plan, which allowed for free M2M at
that time (her mom was added while it was still SunCom as well). Time
went on, service became unbearable, so she cancelled her main line,
but left the secondary line (her mom) active.
I, am employee of AT&T Wireless, decided I had enough of the service
and activated service for my girlfriend (now my wife) and myself with
Nextel. We have had our service with Nextel for just over a year and
are happy with our decision.
Her mom, recently de-activated her phone, which was still under my
wife's account. AT&T Wireless did have to get permission from my wife
to close the account. All is fine there.
Her mom, then ported her number over to Cingular. Cingular, when
taking in the port, must have acquired my wife's SSN and ran her
credit. They also ran her mom's credit (as well they should) since
the account was going to be in her name. Her mom, nor did my wife
NEVER authorized Cingular to run my wife's credit and we are rather
upset about their unauthorized viewing of her credit history. Can
anyone tell me WHY Cingular had to run my wife's credit, since she
does not have account with Cingular? And why weren't we informed?
What is my next recourse of action? I've never had a situation like
this one before, but I sure don't want to have this happen again.
Issuing a fraud alet on my wife's SSN is a possibility, but is
Cingular liable for anything here?
Sharon Needles (of course, not my real name) :)
[snipped the part of the story that isn't germaine to the question]
> Her mom, then ported her number over to Cingular. Cingular, when
> taking in the port, must have acquired my wife's SSN and ran her
> credit. They also ran her mom's credit (as well they should) since
> the account was going to be in her name. Her mom, nor did my wife
> NEVER authorized Cingular to run my wife's credit and we are rather
> upset about their unauthorized viewing of her credit history. Can
> anyone tell me WHY Cingular had to run my wife's credit, since she
> does not have account with Cingular? And why weren't we informed?
> What is my next recourse of action? I've never had a situation like
> this one before, but I sure don't want to have this happen again.
> Issuing a fraud alet on my wife's SSN is a possibility, but is
> Cingular liable for anything here?
How exactly could Cingular have run credit without your mother willingly
providing your wife's SSN to them? Maybe her credit isn't so good and she
provided your wife's SSN number fradulently. The vast majority of credit
fraud is committed by someone that is related to (or is well acquainted
with) the victim. Let's hope that's not the case , but it sounds fishy to
A potential creditor wouldn't need a second SSN if the first one came out
They obtain my wife's information from ATTWS and ran her credit
without her permission and we were NEVER notified until we pulled my
wife's credit yesterday when we went to purchase a vehicle.
What would you do?
Thanks for the reply,
First I would forget about it.
Then get on with my life.
The two above actions would be prudent because there is no recourse. ANY retail
company can run a credit report on ANY person that they get a SSN for unless
that person has previously told the company that they can't.
e-mail responses to - john at kiana dot net
John is exactly on point. If you've ever checked your own credit report,
you'll likely find that it has been checked, in some cases repeatedly, by
various entitiies, particular credit card companies wanting to find new
customers to mail unsolicited applications to. They don't need, and don't
request, your permission to do so.
"RWEmerson" <foolishco...@hobgoblin.com> wrote in message
What don't you understand about this? I have made myself very clear.
Do you work for Cingular?
Consumers do have rights. The Fair Credit Reporting Act was created
for disputes just like this.
On 31 May 2004 12:31:50 GMT, sexyex...@aol.comspamfree (John S.)
Credit card companies DO send out pre-approvals based upon your credit
history, but always note, it is subject to change until a credit
report is actually ran for that particular company.
They can look all they want as it does NOT put an inquiry on your
report. The only time it will put an inquiry on your report is when
you give them permission to do so.
"Sharon Needles" <sharon...@getHIV.ORG> wrote in message
"Sharon Needles" <sharon...@getHIV.ORG> wrote in message
I would like to correspond with you a bit because of issues I have and don't
know how to correct.
Can the information in my credit file be used for any other purposes?
Yes. The practice of generating and selling lists for use in "pre-approved"
credit and insurance offers is allowed by law. Trans Union, Experian and
Equifax all engage in selling lists of consumers who meet certain criteria
in order to receive a "firm" offer of credit or insurance. This is the
source of the many pre-approved credit offers most consumers receive in the
mail. "Pre-approved" and so-called "firm" offers of credit, however, can be
somewhat misleading. A creditor may legally look at your report before
making the offer. If you respond, the creditor may again access your report
before you are actually granted credit. They can deny your credit
application at that time. This is explained in the fine print on the
The law does not allow CRAs to compile and sell information from credit
reports for the purpose of direct marketing. Although CRAs have engaged in
this practice in the past, the Federal Trade Commission, on March 1, 2000,
ruled that Trans Union violated the FCRA by the sale of personal credit
information for target marketing purposes. To read the FTC's full opinion,
see www.ftc.gov/opa/2000/03/transunion.htm. Trans Union has appealed the FTC
's decision and the matter is now under review in federal court. Equifax
states it does not sell lists used for direct or target marketing. Experian,
on the other hand, sells lists of consumers to marketers derived from
consumer surveys, demographics sources, and public records. Experian states
that it does not sell information obtained directly from credit reports for
marketing purposes. See www.experian.com/directmktg/lists.html.
You can remove your name from any list compiled by a CRA, whether the list
is for pre-approved credit offers or direct marketing. To "opt-out," that
is, to remove your name from mailing lists compiled by credit bureaus, call
the toll-free number all CRAs are required by law to maintain for this
purpose: (888) 5OPTOUT or (888) 567-8688. This phone number can be used to
remove your name from the list of all three CRAs. You may also write to the
CRA, and the CRA may also provide an online means for opting-out.
"Sharon Needles" <sharon...@getHIV.ORG> wrote in message
"John S." <sexyex...@aol.comspamfree> wrote in message
Actually, the FCRA was enacted to give consumers a path of action if there
were errors on their credit report, and to prevent false information from
hitting your credit report (among other things not related to the report).
Your credit report is accurate- Cingular did the credit check. There is
nothing to dispute. The phone number that was being ported was associated
with your wife's credit (prior to the port). By allowing someone to port
that number, you have given permission for the companies to perform whatever
business practices they have in effect to port a number. If running the
credit report of the person responsible for the number is a part of that
business process, they are within their rights to do so. The only person
you would have a beef with is the person who initiated the porting process,
because it appears that they set a course of action into motion that is
unacceptable to you.
Simply incorrect. Your anger is based in large measure on not understanding
the issue. As Tee Box suggested, you ought to get over this and move on.
Correct on all points. It isn't an [entirely] random process. Your #4 (and
#5) is much to the point, it seems to me.
> My mother-inlaw did NOT give the Cingular representative my wife's
> SSN. No one from Cingular even contacted us to get an authorization
Then how did your mother-in-law get the number ported? Unless I'm
gravely mistaken, only the "owner" of the number can port it. You
said your mother-in-law "deactivated" the AT&T phone THEN ported to
Cingular. I think you're misunderstanding the situation- you can't
port after you cancel service. The porting process cancels the
service for you. If you cancel first, your number is "lost" and can't
be ported anywhere.
My wild guess is that something like this happened- your Mother-in-law
goes to Cingular to port. Cingular says "but Mrs. Mother-in-law, this
isn't your account, it's your daughter's..." M-i-l gives copy of
daughter's bill to Cingular, Cingular gets vocal permission from your
wife to port (the permission to close the AT&T account that you
mentioned), ported your wife's AT&T account to Cingular (resulting in
the credit check you're complaining about) THEN, transferred the
contract from daughter's name to mother's, which is the only way I can
think of to accomplish this particular port.
So, frankly, instead of bashing Cingular for an "unauthorized" credit
inquiry, you should probably commend them for their creativity, since
they did the near-impossible- they ported your wife's number to her
Are you sure your wife didn't just misunderstand what she was giving
> Cingular obtained my wife's SSN from ATTWS during the port from ATTWS
> to Cingular.
I don't think so. If I understand the porting proceedure, AT&T has no
direct contact with Cingular. After Cingular activates service, AT&T
is electronically notified by a third-party company (who handles the
porting requests) to cancel the prior service. Cingular gets no
information from AT&T, and AT&T gets none from Cingular (except the
electronic equivalent of "Sorry suckers, you lost another one. Cancel
this customer's service...") All information is supplied by the
consumer doing the port. The SSN, if obtained by Cingular, HAD to
come from your wife or her mother.
> They then took it upon themselves to pull the credit
> report of my wife.
If my theory is correct, they had to actually activate service in your
wife's name as well, even if only for a minute, prior to transferring
it into her mother's. They got permission to do THAT from someone-
perhaps from her mother (which would also be improper, but IMHO far
As much as you're complaining about this credit inquiry, imagine how
much you'd be complaining if people could port _other_ people's
numbers! Maybe I like your number so much I'll just port it in my
name to Cingular... ;-) Seriously- por ing can't be done by anyone
but the number's "owner", which in this case is your wife.
> I am not barking up an empty tree.
Perhaps not, but I think you're missing a piece of this puzzle that
either your wife or her mother misunderstood or doesn't remember.
Regardless, (I almost wrote "irregardless" just to get a rise out of
John S.!), say Cingular "accidentally" ran the report. What are your
damages? If Cingular removes the inquiry, you are "safe" from any
> Have you read the Fair Credit Reporting Act? Consumers do have
Yes, and companies sometimes make mistakes. No harm, no foul. If a
cell company had to run my credit to straighten out a problem with MY
mother's account I'd find that FAR less objectionable than any one of
the dozens of "routine" inquiries on my report for the "pre-approved"
credit card solicitations I receive daily in the mail.
Are you POSITIVE it was AT&T and not Cingular who spoke to your wife?
Again, if AT&T closed the account, there could be no port to Cingular
(or anyone else), and then the whole story doesn't make any sense.
Somebody's remembering the events incorrectly here, I'd wager...
If not empty, then the WRONG tree.
Why is this thread still going on? People have their credit checked all the
time and no one thinks less of their credit rating.
Get on with your life and take this someplace else.
Actually, credit inquiries do reduce your score. As a matter of fact, when I
was younger and first trying to get my credit established, I was denied a
few times for "too many inquiries". Upon requesting a copy of my report, I
found out there were 50-60 inquiries on my credit in a relatively short
period of time. Will one check hurt your credit? Of course not. But when a
habit is made of it, it will in the short term.