Credit bureaus or credit reporting agencies are companies that collect information on individual credit history and financial relationships. Credit bureaus provide access to credit reports for consumers, creditors, and other organizations as allowed by law.
These companies do two things: compile credit histories on prospective borrowers and provide credit reports to lenders. A credit bureau may collect information from banks, credit unions, financing companies, credit card companies, and others who may provide credit to you.
Information in a credit report may include payment habits, number of credit accounts, the balance of accounts, and length and place of employment. Lenders use these reports when making decisions on extending credit.