The Blacklist

How professional databases purge subscribers to satisfy data sources.

Valerie McGilvrey
April 15, 2020

I’ve been blessed with good friends who’ve worked for or owned professional databases throughout the years. They’ve given me invaluable insight which I pass on to you.

If you look through my articles on The Daily Skip, you’ll read about TLO and its policy on audits and terminating accounts. Other databases that do business with TLO are required to follow their directive as well.

TLO is owned by TransUnion, obviously, a credit bureau, which is why the frequent audits take place. The standard must be high due to federal regulation placed on credit reporting agencies and I’m sure they’ve developed a procedural policy to rise to the trends in credit fraud.

It’s a fact that repossessions and private investigations are considered high-risk industries. PI’s either aren’t allowed to have access to credit bureaus or the fees are astronomically high ($5000 per month).

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Now, switching back to the cold shoulder that TLO and other databases turn to professionals. Lexis Nexis has a list of people who aren’t allowed access to their many different information products. Just simply known as, The Blacklist is given to any database that requests it even if the database doesn’t buy data from them, and since it’s a well-known industry list, it would be a security step that a database would include in their security protocol.

So here’s the point, I found out that a recent video was made regarding someone who lost access to their only professional database. I don’t know much more detail than that but the most important thing to remember is that if you don’t satisfy compliance standards or you’re on The Blacklist, you’ll forever lose access.

You could lose access to every database you subscribe to if you’re on the blacklist. The excuse that the database will give you will always be contestable but you’ll never gain access again and there’s no amount of begging or pleading that will change their minds. Donuts and flowers won’t work either.

Don’t search celebs, don’t search for yourself and don’t search your friends nor your enemies. Have more than one database to fall back on too. Keep good records and adhere to a strict code of ethics. I get audited once every five years by credit bureaus and about once a year for everyone else. The audit can go back three years because we’re required to keep hard copy files for three years (Texas third-party debt collection law).

And most certainly, the best advice I can ever give you as a self-employed legal industry professional is to never limit yourself to only one database.