I have gotten a number of calls from a local number identifying themselves as "Asset Associates" or something like that, that leave a message saying they have "documents" that they're sending out to me and need to verify my information. Call us back...YOU HAVE BEEN NOTIFIED. Very official-ish.
So I look up the number on google and get a bunch of people claiming it's a scam to get your SSN. So I look at the inquiries on my credit report and see "MSI/First Choice Assets". Hmm.
So I answer one of the calls today and they start trying to verify my identity and birthdate. I tell them I am not going to verify any personal information. They tell me I need to verify so they can serve the documents to me. They put me on with a supervisor- they again spit my information at me and ask me to verify. I know at this point they've soft pulled my credit so the information would be on my report. I refuse do verify. Then he switches tactics and tells me "I cannot give out financial information without verifying that it's the right person but I have information that could save you $2,000 on a debt you owe." I say "you can send me any such information and validation of this supposed debt in the postal mail. I will not verify any information by phone" and he says "so you're not interested in saving $2,000?" "No." Click- he hung up on me.
What gives? I believe this company pulled my credit, saw that I have one collection on the report that they pulled (which is soon to be excluded) and are trying to do...something? I can't quite figure out what though. I guess they could be trying to get my SSN and commit fraud, or maybe trying to bogus collect on a debt that's not even theirs? Is there anything I can do to prevent these people from pulling my credit (other than freezing it)? Can I notify the CRA?
Anyone else have a similar experience
My fist question is why you would answer the phone for a number you don't know, or even call back a number you don't know, especially if you see dubious information about that number on the internet once you looked it up. Block the number and forget about it.
As far as pulling your credit report, while companies are indeed supposed to have a permissible purpose, good luck trying to get an inquiry off there as there is a broad list of permissible purposes that companies can fall under. Your debt may have been sold to this company, they can claim an affiliation with the original company even if they don't really have one, or any number of 100 other things.
I'd block their number and move forward.
My cell phone is also my work cell phone. I have to answer calls I don't know.
I guess they've hooked my interest and I'm worried something bad I don't know about is about to show up from years ago on my credit.
They are only authorized to have pulled your credit report if they have obtained legitimate collection authority, either by way of having been assigned authority from a current owner, or by way of their purchase of the delinquent debt. FCRA 604. You will likely not know if they have legitimate collection authority until you communicate with them.
Their ability to obtain your credit report may in fact be permissible. If they do have collection authority, you cannot block their ability to continue pulling your credit report unless or until their collection authority has been terminated. Freezing will not prevent their permissible purpose, nor will any notice to thte CRA.
Cease communication notices can be sent, but they only prevent communication with you, and not pull of your credit report.
A debt collector can communicate only with the named consumer, and cannot communicate with a third party other than to attempt to obtain location information, so they have a legitimate reason to ask for proof of identity before stating they are calling in reference to an alleged debt. However, you likewise have the authority to decline to provide them any personal information, so unless they establish their own basis for determining you are the pertinent party who owes the asserted debt, there is a standoff.
You have the authority, if you suspect they are a debt collector, to send them a debt validation request, which will impose a cease collectin bar on them until such time as they provide the requested validation. Do you have their mailing addrress?