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Is the CFPB the next NSA?

By Janna Herron · Bankrate.com
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Posted: 6 am ET

A Washington Examiner report highlighted the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's, or CFPB's, credit card data-mining goals after the agency's director testified before the House Financial Services Committee.

The federal watchdog aims to monitor 80 percent of credit card transactions this year and beyond, according to a strategic plan it published online in April. Is that too much?

Last year, the agency monitored 77 percent of the credit card marketplace, according to the online document. The information was gathered from commercially available and proprietary data sets. The agency also plans in-house collection efforts to achieve the 80 percent target, according to the online plan. The data won't include personally attributable or identifiable information.

A CFPB spokesman told me that the data will help ensure that credit card companies are "treating consumers fairly" and are complying with the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009, which banned certain practices, restricted fees and required consumer disclosures. The CFPB is charged with enforcing the act.

The agency will use the information it collects to report to Congress on the CARD Act's impact on credit card practices this fall.

The agency's strategic plan also includes monitoring 95 percent of the mortgage marketplace, a goal it already achieved this year and last year.

Do you think the CFPB's monitoring is necessary? Why or why not?

Follow me on Twitter: @JannaHerron.

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2 Comments
Gil
March 24, 2014 at 2:58 pm

No, and you should be ashamed of even suggesting that and planting that seed of doubt in public minds. Consider the source.

The conservative-leaning Washington Examiner is trying to plant the seed of doubt about the CFPB in the public's mind, so that the public will rise up and demand that the CFPB be disbanded, and the banking industry will no longer have any regulatory agencies monitoring it, like in the good ol' days that led to the 2008 Great Recession.

The CFPB monitoring is necessary to make sure that banks don't engage in the same evil practices that necessitated the creation of the CFPB in the first place.

This article is a microcosm of exactly what is wrong with mainstream media today.

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