Do red flags on credit files really protect us?

Jason Proctor reports:

A Burnaby, B.C., man who spent the past year besieged by identity thieves says RCMP have linked his case to a major arrest.

Paul Wright says criminals have repeatedly managed to change personal information on his TransUnion Credit Bureau profile.

One of the addresses placed on his file was the site of a massive police bust last month that led to the arrests of two people along with the seizure of 15 computer hard drives containing at least 44,000 identities and 220,000 credit card numbers.

Wright, a retired orthopedic surgeon, said he wants to know how criminals have managed to access his TransUnion information despite fraud flags placed on his file.

Good question, indeed. And of course, TransUnion doesn’t answer that as they don’t publicly discuss cases.

Read more on CBC News.

Proctor’s report also contains some other intriguing points, including a 2009 breach involving Desjardins Visa and another breach involving the theft of thousands of hotel receipts from an unnamed hotel. How many more breaches were these defendants involved in that we may never have heard about in the media?

As this is a Canadian case, it’s not clear to me what Canadian authorities might do with respect to concerns that TransUnion has not taken necessary steps to protect Dr. Wright’s file, but it sounds like an important case to investigate if consumers are to trust credit reporting agencies to provide adequate security and to be responsive when made aware of ongoing problems.

About the author: Dissent