Effective date: 20th January 2021
We encourage you to read this policy thoroughly. To make it easier, we've broken it up into bite-size chunks and some longer sections.
Experian is part of a group of companies whose parent company is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) as Experian plc. The Experian group of companies has its corporate HQ in Dublin, Ireland, and its operational HQs in Costa Mesa, California and Nottingham, UK. You can find out more about the Experian group on our website at www.experianplc.com.
Your service provider will provide us with certain personal information about you so that we can deliver the Experian Credit Score and/or the data required to populate the report service to you. We or our third parties will also collect other information about you and the devices you use to access our website. We do this by using technologies like cookies. See also our Cookies Policy
When you request your credit report information/or Experian Credit Score, or when this is included within the service you receive from your service provider, we require some contact information. Contact information may include some or all of the following: Full name, previous names, residential address, previous residential addresses, date of birth, landline phone number, mobile phone number and email address.
In addition to the above, we may also use previous residential addresses that you did not provide to the service provider, but that we think you may have lived at. This helps us to create the most accurate Experian Credit Score and/or credit report information and will show you more clearly what lenders could be taking into consideration when making lending decisions.
In order to verify your identity we may ask you to provide security information that only you will know.
We may also collect certain data automatically when you use our services. This may include (but is not limited to) some or all of the following. How you connect to the internet (including IP address), how you engage with our site, screen resolution, browser data stored on your device (such as cookies – see also our Cookies policy), information about the device software you are using (such as internet browser) and location data (city, region of the IP address you used when accessing our services).
To obtain results from your service provider's price comparison services you may be asked to provide additional information in order to obtain the most accurate quotations from brokers, aggregators, insurers, lenders and providers of credit. This includes:
We may be passed this information in order to provide you with eligibility results in those price comparison services
Where you receive data to populate your credit report and/or Experian Credit Score through a third party (such as a lender, price comparison site or other provider), we may be provided with some of your personal information, this enables us to confirm your eligibility or cancel services you are no longer eligible for.
We use your personal information in lots of ways to make our products and services as effective as possible.
We will use your information to accept you as a new/returning customer and continue to provide you with our products and services.
As part of providing credit report data and/or Experian Credit Score to you we will confirm your identity and authenticate the information we receive about you for security purposes
Establishing your identity is important as the services will provide you with your personal credit information and we must be sure you are who you say you are. Identity checking may also involve checking the registration information you gave your service provider against information we already hold about you as a credit reference agency and potentially publicly available information about you such as from social media.
We will use your information to be able to provide and improve the customer support we provide to you (e.g. when you have questions about the data within your credit report and/or Experian Credit Score.
We will use your information to send you alerts where 'Alerts' are part of the service you receive from your service provider, e.g.
When you use your service provider's price comparison service to search for products, the information you provide is used to retrieve information about products relevant to your search and create a table which allows you to compare them.
Where eligibility ratings are available, the information you provide (including personal information such as your name and address) and your current and historical credit information from Experian (and sometimes TransUnion and Equifax) is also used to help you understand whether you are likely to be accepted based on the lender's criteria.
In some circumstances, we will share that information with brokers, aggregators, lenders and providers of credit and other financial products themselves (as described in the section "Who we share your personal information with").
We may use your information for fraud investigation, detection and prevention measures.
We may use your information for the investigation, detection and prevention of crime (other than fraud).
We will use your information to ensure that our team has the knowledge and expertise they need to ensure we provide the best possible experience to customers when interacting with us.
We will use your information for reporting and analytical purposes (e.g. how many customers are in the north or south of the country) to enable us to improve our products and services and provide appropriate levels of support to our customers.
Like any business, we need to ensure that we maintain comprehensive and up to date records of the ways we process your personal information and other operational activities and therefore we will process the information you provide for record-keeping, updates and general administrative purposes.
Whilst we will try to make sure that you are happy, if you do complain to us about the data within your credit report or Experian Credit Score, we will use the information we have about you to help us manage your complaint.
Like any other business, we are required to comply with many laws and regulations. We will, where necessary, use your personal data to the extent required to enable us to comply with these requirements.
Personal information about you that your service provider sends to us may be used to improve the credit bureau information we already hold about you in our role as a credit reference agency. For example, if you provide a different address or alias to the one we hold already we may store the new address or alias in the credit bureau information to aid quicker identification of you and ensure that lenders can see a full picture of you when making lending decisions. It also aids identification and verification in the credit application process.
At the point of registration, a footprint will be left on your credit report, this will be a 'soft' footprint, which means it is not seen by lenders when you apply for credit.
On each subsequent occasion that you receive an updated credit report and/or Experian Credit Score a further soft footprint will be left on your credit report to show that your credit information was accessed at this time. None of these footprints will be visible to lenders.
Data protection laws require that, where we process your personal data, we must satisfy at least one prescribed condition for processing. These are set out in data protection law and we rely on a number of different conditions for the activities we carry out.
In most cases, the information described above will be provided to us by your service provider because you want to take services from them that include the provision of your credit report data /or Experian Credit Score. Use of your information will be governed by contract terms with your service provider. Giving this information to us is therefore your choice. If you choose not to give all or some of it to us, this may affect our ability to provide the services you want, to you. In particular, we may rely on this condition for processing in the following scenarios:-
In the United Kingdom, we can also use personal information where the benefits of doing it are not outweighed by the interests or fundamental rights or freedoms of individuals. The law calls this the “Legitimate Interests” condition for processing. Where we rely on it, the benefits being pursued by us are: -
We share your personal information only with those persons who need to handle it so we can provide the Experian data required to generate your credit report and/or Experian Credit Score that forms part of the services you've signed up to. We also share it with companies within the Experian group who manage some parts of the services for us; with suppliers who provide services to us which require access to your personal information only; and with resellers, distributors and agents involved in delivering the services we provide where necessary for them to do so.
Lastly, we may also provide your personal information to fraud prevention agencies. This is to protect the Experian group of companies and our customers, to keep our systems secure, or where it's necessary to protect either yours or our best interests.
The following section explains more about who and why we share your information with others.
Fraud prevention agencies The personal information we have collected from you will be shared with fraud prevention agencies who will use it to prevent fraud and money-laundering and to verify your identity. Law enforcement agencies may access and use this information.
If fraud is detected, you could be refused certain services, finance, or employment. Further details of how your information will be used by us and these fraud prevention agencies can be obtained by writing to us at Experian Ltd, PO Box 8000, Nottingham, NG80 7WF.
We and other organisations may access and use the information recorded by fraud prevention agencies from other countries.
Brokers, lenders and providers of credit and financial products In some circumstances, we will share credit report information and your personal information (such as name and address) with brokers, lenders and providers of credit and financial products themselves for purposes that may include:
Individuals You can obtain a copy of the information we hold about you. See section Your rights to how we use your personal information for further information on how you can do this.
Experian is based in the UK, which is where our main databases are. We also operate elsewhere in and outside the European Economic Area, so we may access your personal information from and transfer it to these locations as well. Don't worry though, any personal information we access from or transfer to these locations is protected by European data protection standards.
While countries in the European Economic Area all ensure rigorous data protection laws, there are parts of the world that may not be quite so rigorous and don't provide the same quality of legal protection when it comes to your personal information.
To make sure we keep your personal information safe, we apply strict safeguards when transferring it overseas. For example:
It is important that you understand your rights in relation to your personal information and how you can contact us if you have questions or concerns.
If you've given us consent to process your personal information, you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time by contacting us on UK.DPO@EXPERIAN.COM. You can also ask for access to the personal information we hold about you and request that we correct any mistakes, restrict or stop processing or delete it. We will assess your request and subject to legal or overriding requirements to keep it we will act on your request, but please note that this does not mean that we will delete negative information about you if it is confirmed to be correct. If that is the case, we will explain why. To request a copy of the personal information we hold about you by contacting us https://www.experian.co.uk/consumer/data-access. or write to Experian Ltd, PO Box 9000, Nottingham, NG80 7WP In certain circumstances (e.g. where you provide your information to us (a) with consent to process it or (b) where the processing is necessary for the performance of our contract with you) you can require that we provide the information we hold about you either to you or a third party in a commonly used format. This only applies if we are processing it using automation only. If you would like more information about this, let us know by contacting us at UK.DPO@EXPERIAN.COM.
We will try to ensure that we deliver the best levels of customer service but if you think we are falling short of that commitment, please let us know by contacting us at UK.DPO@EXPERIAN.COM. You may also see our full complaints handling procedure and how to make a complaint.
If you're still unhappy with any aspect of how we handle your personal information you also have the right to contact the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), the supervisory authority that regulates the handling of personal information in the UK. You can contact them by:
You may also see our full complaints handling procedure and how to make a complaint. If we cannot resolve things under that procedure, then you may have the right to refer your complaint, free of charge, to the Financial Ombudsman Service. The contact details for the Financial Ombudsman Service are: Telephone: 0300 123 9 123, or from outside the UK +44 20 7964 1000 E: firstname.lastname@example.org W:
You may also have the option to register your complaint using the European Commission Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) platform. This is a web-based platform that is designed to help consumers who have bought goods or services online to deal with issues arising from their purchase.
Online privacy and security is the most important aspect of any customer service and we take it extremely seriously. We use a variety of the latest technologies and procedures to protect your personal information from unauthorised access, destruction, use or disclosure.
Experian have a comprehensive Global Security Policy based on internationally recognised standards of security (known as ISO27001 standard) and holds ISO27001 certification in the key areas of Global Security Admin team who are responsible for administering logical access to systems and in the Data Centre.
Experian has a dedicated Cyber Security Investigations team who safeguard Experian's key assets such as its systems and storage facilities. This team, identify and effectively manage any security developments that may threaten Experian's people, process, or technology through intervention and the thorough investigation of security incidents. Experian holds Cyber Essentials Certification and performs risk assessments against our critical and external facing applications annually.
Experian is annually audited by an External QSA (Qualified Security Assessor) from Trustwave and have successfully maintained compliance since 2010.
We'll keep your personal information for the periods set out below, and where we were not able to give a specific period, we will keep it only as long as we need it to provide the Experian products and services you've signed up to.. We may also keep it to comply with our legal obligations, resolve any disputes and enforce our rights. These reasons can vary from one piece of information to the next and depend on the products or services you're signed up to, so the amount of time we keep your personal information for may vary.
We will only retain your contact information for up to 7 years after the end of the provision of services in order to answer any queries you may have. However, information about address or name changes which we are told about by your service provider may be kept while there is a continuing need to retain it to help us improve the quality of our data .
We will only retain your security information for six years after the end of the provision of services in order to answer any queries you may have and identify you when you contact us.
We will only retain your Device information for 26 months after the end of the provision of Services .
We will store this information for up to 36 months from the date we first obtain it. After 36 months this personal information will be securely and permanently deleted. However general comparison services usage data that does not identify any individual user, may be kept for a longer period for reporting and analytics purposes.
We will retain these files for the duration of the contract we have with the third party.
In all cases, our need to use your personal information will be reassessed on a regular basis, and information which is no longer required for any purposes will be disposed of.