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United States Government Privacy Your Rights Online

New Federal Database Will Track Americans' Credit Ratings, Other Financial Info 294

schwit1 (797399) writes "As many as 227 million Americans may be compelled to disclose intimate details of their families and financial lives — including their Social Security numbers — in a new national database being assembled by two federal agencies. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau posted an April 16 Federal Register notice of an expansion of their joint National Mortgage Database Program to include personally identifiable information that reveals actual users, a reversal of previously stated policy. The FHFA will manage the database and share it with CFPB. A CFPB internal planning document for 2013-17 describes the bureau as monitoring 95 percent of all mortgage transactions. FHFA officials claim the database is essential to conducting a monthly mortgage survey required by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 and to help it prepare an annual report for Congress."
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New Federal Database Will Track Americans' Credit Ratings, Other Financial Info

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  • by Mitreya ( 579078 ) <mitreya&gmail,com> on Saturday May 31, 2014 @03:04PM (#47137115)

    Mortgages are public records. State and local governments already have all that data. Anyone can look it up.

    I don't think mortgages are public record. Sales of houses and their prices are public record, but that is a far cry from knowing your actual mortgage (maybe you paid cash?)

    There's a lot of funny stuff going on in the foreclosure area, but nobody has been analysing that as a "big data" problem.

    Yes, "big data in a cloud with web 2.0" is the solution. It is reasonably known what "funny stuff" goes on, but instead of cracking down on these practices, we are going to do reports. Reports are needed to identify the problem when it is a mystery.

  • Re:the Putin stage (Score:5, Informative)

    by x0ra ( 1249540 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @03:35PM (#47137259)
    btw, YES, I do believe that the whole mortgage crisis was caused not by banks, who merely provide a tool, but by the people with bad credit history thinking they can buy the american dream.
  • Re:the Putin stage (Score:5, Informative)

    by ganjadude ( 952775 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @04:06PM (#47137431) Homepage
    I believe there were changes made in the 90s that mandated banks give out more loans
  • by ganjadude ( 952775 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @04:10PM (#47137455) Homepage
    true, my only issue with that is I can avoid doing business with *insert private company here*, I have yet to figure out a way to legally avoid doing business with the feds
  • They don't do that. You are twisting facts to fit your lame argument.

    Tea Parties definition is:
    Death panels = Determining which elderly would get care.
    which is false.

    Some management at an organization breaking the law is nothing like the death panels issue.

    Stop lying to fit things into your narrative.

  • by ebno-10db ( 1459097 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @04:19PM (#47137497)

    hate to burst your utopian-bubble, but the last time i checked, in world history Government has caused, roughly, about a bazillion times more pain and sufferings than any corporation could ever even begin to conceive of

    So now you think you live in Nazi Germany or Stalinist Russia? Now who has delusions.

    i can't get my head around this "trust the government" meme

    Neither could the people who wrote the Constitution, which is why we're supposed to have freedom of the press and elections. It's far from perfect, and thanks to corporate influence it's getting worse, but I'm still not learning the Horst Wessel Song or the Internationale.

    BTW, you do know that one of the main complaints of the people who wrote that Constitution was the way the British government was influenced by the East India Company, right? Look up the actual causes of the Boston Tea Party. Oh, and check how that company ruled much of India for 130 years for its profit.

  • by CrimsonAvenger ( 580665 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @04:20PM (#47137507)
    And prosecuting way more whistleblowers than ALL other Administrations combined.
  • by ganjadude ( 952775 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @04:25PM (#47137533) Homepage
    im not lying at all. as you pointed out I guess we could use different definitions of death panels, but the facts are simple. Burocrats deciding who lives or die rather than doctors. it is a fact, it did happen and they admitted it happened.

    we can argue all day about whos definition is correct or not, or we can work towards making sure it doesnt happen again
  • Re:the Putin stage (Score:4, Informative)

    by meerling ( 1487879 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @04:31PM (#47137561)
    Last I heard, the government already has your financial information, through the IRS, and your social security number, they assigned the darned thing to you.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 31, 2014 @05:08PM (#47137749)

    You sound just like the Jews who chose not to flee Germany prior to 1938. It's all just a bunch of rhetoric, they said. No reason to be afraid, they said. Yeah. Nazi Germany really didn't exist as a cohesive unit, up until a point--and then unholy hell broke out. Ol' Adolf was legitimately elected, and used the liberalized rights guaranteed by the Weimar constitution to get himself there. Likewise, prior to 1922, nobody lived in in a Soviet transitional state. That's the point about keeping an eye on the past as you're racing toward the future, because we don't want to live in times like those again, well, at least some of us don't.

    Some people are saying that we might be at one of those critical junctions in time. With all of the capability the government has to track us, to listen to us, to automatically filter, classify and record our private correspondence, to have total information awareness on any of our financials; it's hard to deny, they may well be right. For if the worm did turn sometime in the near future, it'll be bad news.

  • Re:the Putin stage (Score:5, Informative)

    by CrimsonAvenger ( 580665 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @05:12PM (#47137775)

    No, actually it doesn't.

    There's a whole section of the Constitution concerning Congressional Powers (and another for Executive Powers).

    And then there's the "if we didn't mention it, it's a prerogative of the States of the People" part (10th Amendment.)

  • Settle Down... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Hangtime ( 19526 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @05:52PM (#47137985) Homepage

    Full Disclosure: Worked at one of the money center banks in both Small Business and Credit Cards for six years and a foreign bank with a US presence for 4.

    What is this thing and do I need to get my foil hat?

    The database they are constructing is being used to conduct performance reviews on originated mortgages. The database won't pick you up unless you start a mortgage. Once you originate the mortgage this database is being put into place in order to monitor your performance on that mortgage and your corresponding financial condition.

    Why are they doing this?
    To stop the next credit crisis as the system would allow surveillance over mortgages originated by banking institutions. Today, banking regulators have broad powers to request information out of banks including everything that's going to be held in this database (personal information about you, you bet - your bank is pulling regular credit reports on you and the regulator can check your progress when they come in for an exam. Building the database would shortcut that request and help get a better view as to how institutions are originating. No longer would regulators have to show up and start poking around at a bank, but they could monitor the health of the banks portfolio.

    Who would be against this? This sounds like a way to crack down on banks.
    It is a way to crack down on banks and ensure that what's being originated isn't crap. Think about it. We could have better monitored the health of the entire mortgage system by have having this database in place. Those who are against this are most likely those who have a vested interest in ensuring that the mortgage industry opaque to regulators. Those concerned about privacy should realize all of this data is being collected today, I can pull your credit report and cross it with data from CoreLogic and do roughly the same thing. Yes it is all in one place and with a government entity, but so long as its being used responsibility I don't have a problem with it as it would create an excellent tool for finding bad actors within the mortgage industry.

  • Re:the Putin stage (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 31, 2014 @06:02PM (#47138039)

    But the left hates and fears the Tenth Amendment or anything that takes power away from their daddy, the federal government.

  • Re: the Putin stage (Score:4, Informative)

    by TubeSteak ( 669689 ) on Saturday May 31, 2014 @10:41PM (#47139087) Journal

    You would think the banks would have an obligation to protect investors' money.

    Banks were securitizing the bad loans and selling them off immediately.
    They protected their investors money, it's the poor assholes who bought those fraudulently rated AAA bundled loans that weren't protected.

    The people who want to blame this on government housing policy or sub-prime borrowers are the financial equivalent of climate change deniers (yes, I'm talking about the GP).
    All of the official reports blame widespread fraud on the part of lenders.
    Anyone who disagrees with this is in an alternate universe.

    This was written in 2009 by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland:
    Ten Myths about Subprime Mortgages
    http://www.clevelandfed.org/research/commentary/2009/0509.cfm [clevelandfed.org]

    This is the Senate Oversigh Report from 2011:
    Wall Street and the Financial Crisis: Anatomy of a Financial Collapse (646 pages PDF)
    http://www.hsgac.senate.gov//imo/media/doc/Financial_Crisis/FinancialCrisisReport.pdf [senate.gov]

    This is the Congressional Report from 2011:
    The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report: Final Report of the National Commission on the Causes of the Financial and Economic Crisis in the United States
    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/GPO-FCIC/pdf/GPO-FCIC.pdf [gpo.gov] (663 pages PDF)

    They lay out in extensively footnoted detail who was responsible and who wasn't, but I'll save you the trouble of reading them:
    The collapse was caused by weak regulatory controls, conflicts of interest in the banking sector, lending fraud, credit ratings agencies' fraud, massive failures in risk management by the financial sector, and insufficient capital reserves.

    These financial deniers need to cite legitimate research that supports their position.
    At the bare minimum, supporting documents would need to lay out (with numbers) what deserves the blame.
    Because the official reports say things like

    Research indicates only 6% of high-cost loansâ"a proxy for subprime loansâ"had any connection to the [1977 CRA] law. Loans made by CRA-regulated lenders in the neighborhoods in which they were required to lend were half as likely to default as similar loans made in the same neighborhoods by independent mortgage originators not subject to the law.

    The facts are out there, if only you'd look past the media noise machines.

  • by Raenex ( 947668 ) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @08:05AM (#47140397)

    Gotta love the liberal revisionist history. If the civil war was only about slavery:

    1) Why were there Union states that still allowed slavery?
    2) Why did it take Lincoln two years AFTER the war started to deliver the emancipation proclamation?
    3) Why were there Union states that still did not abolish slavery AFTER the emancipation proclamation and even AFTER the Civil War?

    The answer is simple. Lincoln was willing to tolerate the status quo of slavery to preserve the Union. However, he was determined to prevent slavery from being established in the new territories. The South decided that wasn't good enough and decided to secede. The emancipation proclamation was meant to punish and undermine the states in rebellion.

    You can argue that the war was also about the right of secession, but the issue of slavery was the cause for the split, and of that there is no doubt.

Solutions are obvious if one only has the optical power to observe them over the horizon. -- K.A. Arsdall