May 14, 2021

New Data & API: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Publishes Over 7,700 Consumer Complaint Narratives About Financial Companies

From the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB):

[On Thursday the] Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) [went] live with an enhanced public-facing consumer complaint database, which includes for the first time over 7,700 consumer accounts of problems they are facing with financial companies concerning mortgages, bank accounts, credit cards, debt collection, and more. The CFPB is also publishing a Request for Information today seeking input on whether there are ways to enable the public to more easily understand and make comparisons of the complaint information.

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The CFPB began accepting complaints as soon as it opened its doors nearly four years ago in July 2011. It currently accepts complaints on many consumer financial products, including: credit cards; mortgages; bank accounts; private student loans; vehicle and other consumer loans; credit reporting; money transfers; debt collection; and payday loans. As of June 1, 2015, the Bureau has handled more than 627,000 complaints, with mortgages and debt collection being the most frequent topics. Through the complaint handling process, the Bureau has helped consumers secure hundreds of thousands of responses from companies as well as millions of dollars in monetary relief.

In June 2012, the CFPB launched its Consumer Complaint Database, which is the nation’s largest public collection of consumer financial complaints. It includes basic, anonymous, individual-level information about the complaints received, including the date of submission, the consumer’s zip code, the relevant company, the product type, the issue the consumer is complaining about, and how the company handled the complaint.

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[As of June 25, 2015] consumer narratives that have been scrubbed of personal information will be added to the complaint database on a daily basis. 

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Searching the Database
  • Search for specific product names or features: Users can now search consumer narratives for product names or features such as the brand name of a credit card or a mortgage feature.
  • Highlight specific company practices and problems: Users can search for terms in consumer accounts of what happened such as “lost paperwork,” “foreclosure scam,” or “robo-signing.”
  • Break down information by state: Users can sort complaints by state and zip code to spotlight local trends and information.
Direct to Complete News Release
Direct to Consumer Complaint Database
Direct to Request For Comment (via Federal Register)
About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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