CFPB eyes new data sources to broaden credit access

The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) said on Thursday it was exploring the use of alternative data sources such as mobile phone and rent payment bills to help extend affordable loans to consumers lacking credit history.

The agency estimates that 26 million Americans have no credit history with a nationwide consumer reporting authority and about 19 million have a history that is insufficient to produce a credit score under most models.

CFPB said it was seeking public feedback on the benefits and risks of tapping these alternative sources to make lending decisions.

The agency will explore the impact of the program on cost and service of loans, complexity of credit decisions and its implications for privacy and security.

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