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Choice Point Informative - Big Brother EXPOSED aka Choice Point

Review by DebHgn on 2005-03-13
ChoicePoint is an Alpharetta, Georgia-based company that sells information in three markets--insurance, business and government, and marketing. According to a recent quarterly statement filed at the Security and Exchange Commission,

ChoicePoint sells: “claims history data, motor vehicle records, police records, credit information and modeling services...employment background screenings and drug testing administration services, public record searches, vital record services, credential verification, due diligence information, Uniform Commercial Code searches and filings, DNA identification services, authentication services and people and shareholder locator information searches...print fulfillment, teleservices, database and campaign management services...”

ChoicePoint has managed to attain a large share of the commercial data broker (CDB) market with strategic purchases of other businesses. ChoicePoint has in it’s files the medications your insurance company has paid for, voter registration information and how you voted! Now whether this information is correct or not is at question.

Since its spinoff from Equifax in 1997, ChoicePoint has acquired a number of information collection and processing companies.

These include:

National Data Retrieval, Inc., a provider of public records information; List Source, Inc., d/b/a Kramer Lead Marketing Group, a marketing company in the life and health insurance and financial services markets;

Mortgage Asset Research Institute, Inc., a mortgage fraud monitoring company;

Identico Systems, LLC, a customer identity verification company;

Templar Corporation; insuranceDecisions, Inc., an insurance industry claims administration company;

Bridger Systems, Inc., a USA PATRIOT Act compliance company;

CITI NETWORK, Inc. d/b/a Applicant Screening and Processing, a tenant screening company; TML Information Services, Inc., a provider of motor vehicle reports;

Drug Free, Inc., a drug testing company;

National Drug Testing, Inc., a drug testing company;

Application Profiles, Inc., a background check company;

Informus Corporation; a company enabling ChoicePoint to offer products online;

Tyler-McLennon, Inc., a background screening company;

ChoicePoint Direct Inc., formerly known as Customer Development Corporation, a database marketing company;

EquiSearch Services, Inc.;

DATEQ Information Network, Inc., an insurance underwriting services company;

Washington Document Service, Inc., a court record retrieval service;

DataTracks Technology, Inc., a public record information company;

DataMart, Inc., a database software company;

Statewide Data Services, Inc; NSA Resources, Inc., a drug testing company;

DBT Online, Inc., a public record services provider;

RRS Police Records Management, Inc., a provider of police reports and related services;

VIS’N Service Corporation; Cat Data Group, LLC; Drug Free Consortium, a drug testing company;

BTi Employee Screening Services, Inc., an employee pre-screening services company;

ABI Consulting Inc., a drug screening company;

Insurity Solutions, Inc., an insurance rating company;

National Medical Review Offices, Inc.; Bode Technology Group, Inc., a DNA identification company;

Marketing Information & Technology, Inc., a direct marketing company;

Pinkerton’s, Inc., a pre-employment screening company;

Total eData Corporation, an e-mail database company;

L&S Report Service, Inc., a provider of police records;

Resident Data, Inc., a residential screening services provider;

Vital Chek Network, Inc., a provider of vital records;

Accident Report Services, Inc., a provider of police records;

Programming Resources Company, insurance software company;

Professional Test Administrators, Inc., a drug testing company;

CDB Infotek, a seller of public records;

Medical Information Network, LLC, an online physician verification service;

Rapsheets.com,an online provider of criminal records data.

An April 13, 2001 article in the Wall Street Journal reported that profiling company ChoicePoint provided personal information to at least thirty-five government agencies.

EPIC has filed a series of Freedom of Information Act requests to determine the nature and amount of information sold to government. To date, EPIC has determined that ChoicePoint has several multi-million dollar contracts with law enforcement agencies to sell personal data.

ChoicePoint sells a wide array of information to the government, including:

Credit headers, a list of identifying information that appears at the top of a credit report. This information includes name, spouse’s name, address, previous address, phone number, Social Security number, and employer.

“Workplace Solutions Pre-Employment Screening,” which includes financial reports, education verification, reference verification, felony check, motor vehicle record, SSN verification, and professional credential verification.

Asset Location Services.
The ability to engage in “wildcard searches,” which allows law enforcement to “obtain a comprehensive personal profile in a matter of minutes” with only a first name or partial address.

The use of “Soundex” queries, which allow searches on personal information based on how names sound, rather than how they are spelled.

Information on neighbors and family members of a suspect.

ChoicePoint’s AutoTrackXP is one of the most favored CDB products. It provides an interface for additional data points, including:
Linkage services, which draw graphical relationships between suspects and other addresses, neighbors, and Social Security Numbers.

Public records, including Social Security Death Master Filings, bookings and arrests, liens, judgments, marriages, divorces, VIN number, previously owned vehicles and bankruptcies.

Licenses, including drivers, pilots, and professional credentials.

Lists of residents of Georgia, New York, and Ohio.

National real-time phone directories and reverse look up services.

Business information, compiled nationwide from Secretaries of State.

“SmartSeach,” a tool that allows broad wildcard searches: “There may be thousands of Jane Does, but there’s probably only one Jane Doe who’s between 25 and 30 and lives on the upper west side of Manhattan. SmartSearch makes it possible to find that one.”
U.S. Military Personnel.

Boat owners.
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