It has never been more important for collectors to be sure the phone numbers they are dialing belong to the individuals they are looking to communicate with, so Experian has released a product that aims to help agencies be more productive and efficient while also helping with their risk management and compliance.
The product, called Phone Number ID, verifies the owner of a phone number and provides that information to collection agencies. Experian is working with 4,500 different carriers to obtain the information in real-time. Phone numbers can be uploaded in batches to Experian, which then connects with the carriers to obtain ownership information. Experian then transmits the ownership information back to the collection agency, said Paul DeSaulniers, senior director for risk scoring and trended data solutions at the credit bureau.
Recent changes to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, which limits the number of times that a company can incorrectly contact a consumer before being in violation of the law was also a driver for Experian to develop the product, DeSaulniers said. Beyond that, however, the real value of the product lies in how much more efficient it can make collectors by reducing or eliminating the number of wrong numbers dialed.
“If I am running a collection shop, why wouldn’t I want to verify who I am calling,” DeSaulniers said. “It’s data hygiene; it makes all kind of sense from a best practices perspective.”
The product is available on a tiered-based pricing model, DeSaulniers said.
By reaching out to carriers directly, the information could be more up-to-date than what is included in a consumer’s credit report, DeSaulniers said.
“Bureau numbers work fantastically,” DeSaulniers said. “This product is an extra layer that comes directly from the phone company.”
The objective is to provide collection agencies with peace of mind that the numbers their collectors are calling are the most likely phone numbers, DeSaulniers said.