A guide to the National Hunter and Cifas databases
With identity fraud on the rise, the National Hunter and Cifas databases are becoming increasingly relevant. Many people are blissfully unaware of Cifas and National Hunter until they cause a lender to reject your credit application.
Even if you have a perfect credit score, you may experience problems when it comes to the UK's fraud prevention services. So, what are the National Hunter and Cifas databases? And how do they affect your ability to secure a great car lease?
What is the National Hunter database?
The National Hunter database is loosely known as the ‘fourth credit reference agency’, although it does not hold any credit report information, court judgments or electoral roll data. Founded in 1993, the organisation carries out approximately 100,000 credit checks per day and is solely concerned with the prevention of fraud and financial crime.
Will the National Hunter database stop me getting a car lease?
If your details are held in the National Hunter database, obtaining a car lease can be challenging. The National Hunter detects inconsistencies by comparing credit application form data with information held in their system. If the National Hunter highlights an application as suspicious, lenders may contact you for more information or decline your application with no explanation.
While the National Hunter database works well to identify fraudsters, it can also cause lenders to reject genuine applications. Any minor discrepancies in the information you supply can cause the database to flag your application as suspicious.
“The National Hunter database was founded in 1993 and now performs around 100,000 credit checks each day.”
How do I find out if my name is on the National Hunter database?
You have a statutory right to obtain any personal information from the Hunter database. To access it, you must submit a Subject Access Request (SAR) and pay a fee of £10.
Why did the National Hunter flag up my application as suspicious?
There are a number of reasons why the National Hunter could flag up your application:
You have recently received a large salary increase.
You accidentally miss a digit from your salary (e.g. declaring that you earn £10,000 instead of £100,000).
You have changed employers or address frequently over a brief period.
There are inconsistencies in the spelling of your name.
Your mobile number is held by more than one person (e.g. if you have given your old phone to a family member).
Can I remove information from the National Hunter or Cifas databases?
Any suspect entries remain on the database for six years and can seriously harm your ability to lease a car. Be as honest and consistent as possible when completing credit applications to prevent discrepancies showing in the system.
If you find the database holds incorrect information, you must contact the lender directly. The National Hunter database is unable to amend or remove entries without the lender’s consent.
What is the Cifas database?
Cifas is the UK’s leading fraud prevention service which acts to ‘detect, deter and prevent fraud’ and financial crime. Cifas holds a comprehensive database of confirmed fraud cases and works closely with financial institutions and law enforcement agencies to protect victims of fraud.
Information held on the Cifas register is usually more accurate than the National Hunter as its data concerns actual cases of fraud as opposed to suspected cases. However, Cifas can place a warning on a specific address, which means you may run into problems if you move to an address that has been linked with previous fraudulent activity.
“Cifas holds detailed information about confirmed fraud cases and works to ‘detect, deter and prevent fraud’ in the UK.”
Will the Cifas database stop me getting a car lease?
When an organisation identifies fraudulent activity, they apply an alert to your name or address. Car finance companies see this warning when you apply for a car lease, making them aware that you were a victim of fraud. While the Cifas system won’t automatically prevent you from getting a car lease, it will prompt extra security checks to confirm your identity. This can lengthen the process and make it a little harder to secure a car lease deal.
How do I find out if my name is on the Cifas database?
As with National Hunter, you can obtain a copy of your personal information for a fee of £10. If you notice the database contains incorrect information, you should write to your lender in the first instance to request they amend or remove the information.
If you struggle to obtain a car lease or car finance loan, contact Eureka to discuss your options. Our friendly team are trained to understand your situation and requirements and are happy to help you secure a great car lease.