CFPB Should Ensure Information Posted on Government Website Provides Consumers with Facts

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 20, 2014

Contact: Alison Hawkins
202-589-2427

CFPB Should Ensure Information Posted on Government Website Provides Consumers with Facts

Financial services industry remains committed to resolution of all consumer complaints

Washington, DC— The Financial Services Roundtable released the following statement regarding the CFPB’s online complaint portal that would include unverified, anonymous complaint narratives:

“The financial services industry welcomes sunlight on its customer services and products and is now more transparent than ever. Nearly every company in the industry engages with customers extensively on highly-trafficked, publically available social media forums. Some companies also engage in direct dialogue with consumers on their own websites. But the CFPB’s plan to host, and essentially endorse, unverified complaints on a government website—a place where consumers should be going to get only facts—is not helpful for consumers.”

“The CFPB also states that posting these unverified narratives will help enforcement. The CFPB is already receiving these narratives and is resolving complaints with companies, so posting these unverified claims will do nothing to further enforcement actions. The financial industry has maintained a strong working relationship with the CFPB and is clearly meeting the needs of customers via the CFPB’s current complaint portal, as outlined in the CFPB’s own Consumer Response Annual Report.”

“This new proposal will be a disservice to consumers who expect to get factual information from an agency that was created to help consumers. The CFPB, and all federal regulators, should consider how they can be more transparent and not rush this proposal without full debate. Again, rumors don’t equal facts.”

The agency also has not mapped out exactly how it will treat the posting of unverified complaints, and how that may provide false information to consumers and harm employers.

FSR encourages the CFPB to ensure that consumers benefit from clear, factual information from the government, and that the agency does not misuse a government website by posting unverified information. The financial services industry continues to welcome the complaints, comments and concerns of their customers, and remains deeply committed to the strength and security of the nation’s economy.

FSR’s Senior Director of Consumer Financial Services and President of ITAC, Anne Wallace, posted the following blog to highlight some of the concerns consumers should have with the CFPB’s proposed complaint portal: http://bit.ly/1odDpIM

To learn more about how the CFPB’s proposal could harm consumers, visit CFPBrumors.com

For more information, contact Alison Hawkins at 202-589-2427 or at Alison.Hawkins@fsroundtable.org

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The Financial Services Roundtable represents the largest integrated financial services companies providing banking, insurance, payment and investment products and services to the American consumer. Member companies participate through the Chief Executive Officer and other senior executives nominated by the CEO. FSR member companies provide fuel for America’s economic engine, accounting for $92.7 trillion in managed assets, $1.2 trillion in revenue, and 2.3 million jobs. Learn more at FSRoundtable.org.

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