Oostburg State Bank will never sell customer information, but we have been contacted by several people concerned that their personal and financial information has been sold because they started getting phone calls soliciting them to apply for credit with someone else after applying for a loan.

Unfortunately, there is a reason for this. While we don’t sell your information, the credit bureaus we pull reports from (Equifax, Innovis, TransUnion, and Experian) can and do. Credit bureaus have the right to sell your information to certain companies offering “pre-approved” or “firm” credit.

According to GoBankingRates.com, every time you get an offer in the mail for a “pre-approved” credit card, this is based on the information sold by one of the big three credit bureaus. This is very common practice and is legal.

Credit bureaus are prohibited from selling your personal information for direct marketing purposes. Still, the fact that they can sell it at all can be pretty annoying.

There is some good news. Our customers can choose to opt out of this practice by going to www.optoutprescreen.com and also getting on the do not call list at 1-888-382-1222 or donotcall.gov.

Please contact us if you have any additional questions.