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					Case 1:09-cv-00168-CAM-LTW

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` ORIGINAL
FILED l N~ ~E p '~r~FFICE S
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA ATLANTA DIVISION

JAN $ 2 20og
IAM~B A7r1'EN, C) BY,

HELENA

BROWN,

§ CIVIL ACTION FILE NO :

Plaintiff, pro se, § V. §

I = Q -9 -- G V - 016 8
JURY TRIAL DEMANDED'„ L

EQUIFAX INFORMATION § SERVICES, LLC, . § Defendant. §

COMPLAINT COMES NOW the Plaintiff, Selena Brown (hereinafter "Plaintiff'), prose, and
for her causes of action against Defendant Equifax Information Services, LLC

(hereinafter "Equifax"), avers as follows : PRELIMINARY STATEMENT
1 . This is an action for damages brought by an individual consumer against Equifax regarding inaccurate entries on her credit report and for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U .S.C. § 1681 et seq., as

amended (hereinafter "FCRA") .
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JURISDICTION AND VENUE 2. Federal question jurisdiction of this Court arises under 15 U.S .C . § 1681p and 28 U.S.C. § 1331 . 3 . Equifax is a for-profit limited liability company, organized, existing and doing business under and by virtue of the laws of the State of Georgia

with its office and princ ipal place of business located at 1. 550 Peachtree Street, N .W., Atlanta, Georgia 30309 ; therefore venue is proper in the
Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, pursuant to 28 U .S.C . § 1391(b) .

PARTIES 4. Plaintiff is a natural person and is a resident of Cobb County, Georgia.
5. Plaintiff is a "consumer" as defined by the FCRA, 15 U .S.C. § 1681 a(c).

6. Equifax is a "consumer reporting agency" as defined by the FCRA, 15
U.S .C. § 1681a(f), that engages in the business of maintaining and reporting consumer credit information . 7. Equifax may be served with process by delivering a copy of the Summons and Complaint to its registered agent, Kent E. Mast, 1550 Peachtree Street, N.W., Atlanta, Georgia 30309 .

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FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS : PART ONE 8. In October 2006 after reviewing her TransUnion and Experian credit reports Plaintiff discovered her identity had been stolen . 9 . Plaintiff has spent over two years and more than $532 trying to bring closure to this distressing ordeal (Plaintiffs Exhibits A-1 through A-3) . 10. After two years of gathering information and documentation Plaintiff has deduced that Equifax (a rogue employee) was directly involved with

Plaintiffs identity theft . This is based on e-mails Plaintiff obtained from the identity thief s e-mail account (which was fraudulently opened under Plaintiffs name) and numerous inconsistencies that are found only in
Plaintiff s Equifax credit reports . 11 . Plaintiff s TransUnion, Experian and Innovis credit reports correctly

reported fraudulent addresses, names, phone numbers and inquiries
directly related to the identity thief. 12 . In stark contrast, Plaintiff s Equifax credit reports, a total of 18 received

between August 2006 -August 2008, reported zero fraudulent addresses,
zero fraudulent names, zero fraudulent phone numbers and only a few

fraudulent inquiries .

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13 . On June 20, 2007, Plaintiff asked Equifax if her credit file contained mis-merged or mixed files . Equifax said there were no mis-merged or mixed files in Plaintiffs credit file . Therefore , all ofthe fraudulent information reported by the other three credit bureaus should have been reported by Equifax as well. 14 . In early 2006 an identity thief using the stolen personal information of a Georgia woman named Tonia Leach had gained employment at Equifax . 15 . Coincidentally, Plaintiffs identity was stolen in 2006 . 16. The identity thief worked at Equifax for almost a full year before the real Tonia Leach discovered that her identity had been stolen . 17 . In May 2007 an Equifax spokesman told WSB-TV/Channel 2 News in Atlanta that the identity thief did not have access to sensitive information . 18, The identity thief is not available to confirm Equifax's statement because law enforcement has not been able to locate her. 19. On November 3, 2008, Plaintiff submitted via certified mail a three-page dispute letter with 51 pages of supporting documentation disputing the completeness and accuracy of information contained in Plaintiff s credit file (Plaintiff's Exhibits B-1 through B-4) .

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20 . On November 12, 2008, Equifax responded with an absurd letter to Plaintiff requesting additional documentation to process a security freeze

(Plaintiff's Exhibit C) .
21 . . Plaintiffs dispute letter never ment ioned a request for a security freeze .

22 . Equifax did not conduct a reasonable reinvestigation to determine whether
the disputed information was accurate or complete . 23 . Therefore, in November 2008 Equifax willfully and intentionally violated 15 U.S.C. § 16811 by failing to act as prescribed by federal statute after receiving notice of a dispute from a consumer . FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS : PART TWO 24. On July 12, 2006, at 2 :18 p.m ., Plaintiff obtained her annual free credit

report from Equifax via a federally mandated and secure website with
encryption, www.annualcreditreport .com (Plaintiff s Exhibit D) . 25 . The online credit report contained no fraudulent information . 26 . At 5 : ]. 1 p.m. on that very same day and just three hours after Plaintiffs

initial contact with Equifax, an identity thief called Scana Energy and opened a fraudulent account for an address in Clarkston, GA (Plaintiff's
Exhibits E-lthrough E-3) .

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27 . Clarkston, GA is located 12 miles east of Equifax's Atlantaa office . 28. On July 13, 2006, the very next day, the identity thief attempted to re-open a closed account with World Financial Network National Bank (hereinafter "WFNNB"). 29. WFNNB performed a hard inquiry via Equifax and Experian. 30. Experian correctly reported the fraudulent inquiry (Plaintiff's Exhibit F) .

31 . Equifax did not report the fraudulent inquiry. Instead, Equifax
fraudulently suppressed/concealed the WFNNB inquiry for five months and then deleted it on December 5, 2006, along with six other fraudulent inquiries, several "additional disputed inquiries and accounts (Equifax's cryptic wording, not Plaintiffs)," two fraudulent names and two fraudulent phone numbers (Plaintiff's Exhibit G).

32. Plaintiff had received four different credit reports from Equifax between
August 2006 - December 2006 (Plaintiff's Exhibits H-1 through K-4) . 33 . Absolutely none of the deleted information appeared anywhere on any of those four credit reports . 34. All of the deleted information had been suppressed/concealed since July 2006 (five months) and all of it was directly related to the identityy thief .

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35. On August 11, 2006, Plaintiff called Equifax and requested that her last name be corrected . Plaintiff was still unaware at this point that her identity had been stolen . 36 . Plaintiffs phone call required Equifax to mail an updated/current credit

report to Plaintiff s home address showing the name correction .
37 . On that very same day at 6 :14 p.m . and again seven minutes later at 6 :21 p.m., the identity thief submitted a fraudulent change of address via www.whitefence .com (Plaintiff's Exhibits L-1 and L-2) . 38. The identity thief had been in possession of Plaintiffs personal information since July 2006, yet this identity thief coincidentally chose August 11, 2006, to submit a fraudulent change of address . 39 . Therefore, on the very same day Plaintiff generated an Equifax credit report that could potentially expose the identity thief s fraudulent activities, the identity thief submitted a fraudulent change of address . 40 . There were only two people who knew that a credit report was about to be mailed to Plaintiffs home address - Plaintiff and Equifax . 41 . The fraudulent change of address was unsuccessful because unbeknownst to the identity thief and Equifax the Plaintiff had a private mailbox .

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42. Also on August 11, 2006, the identity thief fraudulently obtained Plaintiff s TransUnion credit report (Plaintiff's Exhibit M) . 43 . The identity thief then hastily submitted 14 fraudulent credit applications . 44. Therefore, on August 11, 2006, after Plaintiff had called Equifax and generated a potentially incriminating credit report, theree were three different coincidences : (1) fraudulent change of address, (2) TransUnion credit report obtained and (3) a slew of fraudulent credit applications . 45 . The very next day, August 12, 2006, the identity thief fraudulently obtained Plaintiffs :Experian credit report (Plaintiff's Exhibit N) 46 . The identity thief never obtained Plaintiff s Equifax credit report . 47. On August 14, 2006 (a Monday), after a busy weekend of fraudulent credit applications, the identity thief called Equifax (allegedly) and

disputed 12 hard inquiries (not soft inquiries) and three charge accounts
(Citi, Dell Financial Services [hereinafter "Dell"] and Target) . 48 . The identity thief never called TransUnion or Experian even though he/she had fraudulently obtained credit reports from both credit bureaus . 49 . The identity thief chose to call (allegedly) Equifax even though he/she had never obtained Plaintiffs credit report from Equifax .

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50. Therefore, the identity thief was somehow able to get through Equifax's interactive voice response (NR) phone system without a confirmation number and then d ispute a total of 15 items without a credit ' report. S 1 . Equifax was then able to : (1) submit 15 disputes to 15 different creditors ; (2) receive responses back from all 15 creditors ; (3) delete 12 hard inquiries, not soft inquiries, based on the responses from each creditor ; (4) review Plaintiffs credit file to ensure all disputes had been addressed ;

(5) generate three separate credit reports based on the 12 hard inquiry
deletions and (6) mail those three separate credit reports to Plaintiff . 52 . All of this was accomplished (allegedly) in less than eight hours on August 14, 2006, the very same day of the alleged "phone call" from the identity thief. 53 . Equifax did not give Plaintiff the same speedy service that was given to the identity thief. 54 . Plaintiff had also called Equifax on a Monday, December 4, 2006 ; however, she only disputed three hard inquiries (HSBC Retail, Wal-Mart and Cingular Wireless) . Equifax took four working days to investigate

and delete those three hard inquiries .

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55 . Plaintiff then called on a Friday, January l9, 2007, and disputed only two

hard inquiries (Comcast andHome Shopping Network [hereinafter
"HSN"]). Equifax took three working days to investigate and delete those two hard inquiries .

56 . Therefore, it took Equifax an average of three and a half working days to
resolve an average of only two disputes for Plaintiff, yet Equifax took less than eight hours to resolve 15 disputes (seven times -as many) for the identity thief. This anomaly is highly suspicious. y 57. On August 25, 2008, Plaintiff contacted Ms Anna Holland at the Target Fraud Division . She stated that Target had not received any type of dispute from Equifax on August l 4 ; 2006 . 58 . Equifax hadd allegedly generated three separate credit reports on August 14, 2006, after quickly deleting 12 hard inquiries for the identity thief 59 . Equifax allegedly mailed the credit reports to Plaintiffs correct address . 60. Plaintiff never received those three credit reports ; however, Plaintiff did receive the other 18 credit reports, 14 letters and six PS Forms 3811

(certified mail receipts) for a total of 38 separate pieces of mail from
Equifax since July 12, 2006 (Plaintiff s Exhibit 0).

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61 . Plaintiff has also received 115 separate pieces of mail related to her identity theft from 22 other businesses (Plaintiff's previous Exhibit 0). 62 . Therefore, Plaintiff has received every single document that she has requested, except three credit reports directly related to an alleged "phone

call" from the identity thief. This anomaly is alsoo highly suspicious .
63 . On June 22 , 2007, Plainti ff called Equifax and requested that they mail her another copy of the three missing credit reports. 64 . Plaintiff specifically requested Confirmation #6226017229, #622601804

and #6226017935 and then verified her correct/current mailing address .
65 . That very same day, Equifax allegedly mailed four credit reports to Plaintiff even though Plaintiff had specifically requested only three . 66. Equifax mailed only one credit report, #6317015115, to Plaintiff s correct address (Plaintiff's Exhibit P) . 67. Plaintiff had not requested #6317015115 and it had absolutely nothing to do with the three credit reports Plaintiff had specifically requested . 68 . Equifax then mailed (allegedly) the three credit reports that Plaintiff had specifically requested (#6226017229, #6226018041 and #6226017935) to a totally different address in a totally different state .

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69. There was one, and only one, address of any type reporting in Plaintiffs Equifax credit file on June 22, 2007 (Plaintiffs previous Exhibit P) . 70. There is no logical explanation for Equifax's actions on June 22, 2007 . 71 . On six different occasions (June 22,2007 ; October 9, 2007 ; February 12, 2008 ; July 21, 2008 ; August 11, 2008 and August 25, 2008) Plaintiff has specifically requested copies of the three missing credit reports . 72. One credit report, #6226017229, was finally produced in February 2008 after eight months and three phone calls . 73 . Confirmation #6226018041 and #6226017935 are still missing in action . 74. On August 30, 2006, Plaintiff had attempted to obtain her TransUnion and Experian credit reports via www .annualcreditreport .com; however, she

kept receiving error messages stating that she had already obtained them .
75. The identity thief had actually obtained both credit reports on August 11 and Augu st 12 , 2006 . 76. Plaintiff was still unaware of her identity theft on August 30, 2006 ; however, the error messages raised red flags for possible identity theft . 77. On September 19, 2006, Plaintiff froze her credit files as a precaution due

to the error messages from www.annualcreditreport .com.

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78 . The identity thief had been able to open 15 fraudulent accounts in just two months (July 12 - September 14, 2006) ; however, Plaintiffs credit freeze immediately halted his/her ability to open any more accounts . 79. Four of the accounts (Dell, Target, Cingular Wireless and Scana Energy) had been opened using 1024 Noble Vines Dr #4, Clarkston, GA 30021 (Plaintiff s Exhibits Q-1, Q-2, R, S and previous Exhibit E- 1 ) . 80. Three accounts (DirecTV, a second Target account and Georgia Power/Southern Company) had been opened using 751 N . Indian Creek Dr #429, Clarkston, GA 30021 . 81 . All seven of the inquiries were performed via Equifax (Plaintiff s previous Exhibits E-3, G, 1-2 and 1-3) .

82. All seven of the fraudulent credit applications were approved .
83 . Equifax's own website states that current and previous addresses in the credit file come from credit applications (Plaintiffs Exhibit T) . 84 . Therefore, Equifax received and processed seven inquiries containing two

different fraudulent addresses ; however, Equifax has never reported one
single fraudulent address on any of the 18 credit reports mailed to Plaintiff over a two-year period, August 2006 - August 2008.

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85 . On August 25, 2008, Plaintiff contacted Ms Anna Holland at the Target Fraud Division . Ms Holland stated that Target had actually reported both of the aforementioned Clarkston, GA addresses to Equifax, Experian and TransUnion between August 11, 2006 - December 12, 2006 .

86. All four of the credit bureaus correctly reported the fraudulent accounts .
87. Experian also reported five fraudulent addresses, two fraudulent names and one fraudulent phone number (Plaintiff's Exhibits U-1 and U-2) . 88. TransUnion reported , three fraudulent addresses and one fraudulent phone

number (Plaintiff's Exhibits V 1 through V-3) .
89. Innovis reported one fraudulent address and one fraudulent phone number (Plaintiff's Exhibits W- I and W-2).

90. TransUnion, Experian and Innovis all reported the same fraudulent
address, 1024 Noble Vines Dr #4, Clarkston, GA 30021, and the same fraudulent phone number, (404) 296-4431 . 91 . Equifax has never reported one single fraudulent address . 92. Equifax fraudulently suppressed/concealed the fraudulent phone number ([404] . 296-4431) and two fraudulent names for five months and then deleted them on December 5, 2406 (Plaintiff s previous Exhibit G) .

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93 . At all times pertinent hereto, Equifax was acting by and through its agents, servants and/or employees who were acting within the course and scope of their agency or employment, and under the direct supervision and control of Equifax . 94 . Equifax's intentional, willful, reckless and malicious disregard of statutory dutyy was a direct and proximate cause in bringing about Plaintiffs actual

damages, including but not limited to, emotional distress, insomnia and
economic damages . CLAIM FOR RELIEF Violating the FCRA~ 95. Plaintiff realleges and incorporates Paragraphs 1 through 94 as if fully set forth herein.

96 . Plaintiffs credit file contained inaccurate and incomplete information .
97 . On November 3, 2008, Plaintiff notified Equifax directly of the inaccurate and incomplete information by submitting a three-page dispute letter with 51 pages of support ing documentation via certified mail . , 98 . Plaintiffs dispute was not frivolous or irrelevant . 99 . Equifax willfully and intentionally failed to reinvestigate as prescribed by federal statute after receiving notice of a dispute from a consumer .

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100. Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U .S .C . § 1681e(b) by
failing to follow reasonable procedures to assure maximum possible accuracy of Plaintiffs credit reports . 101 . Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U .S .C . § 1681g(a)(1) by failing to clearly and accurately disclose to Plaintiff all information in

Plaintiff s file .
102. Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 1 5 U.S .C. § 1681g(a)(3)(A) (ii) by failing to clearly and accurately disclose to Plaintiff the identification of each person that had procured Plaintiff s consumer report . 103 . Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U .S .C . § 1681i(a)(1)(A) by failing to conduct a reasonable reinvestigation to determine whether the disputed information was inaccurate or incomplete .

104 . Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U . S.C. § 1681 i(a)(2)(A)
by failing to provide notification of Plaintiffs dispute to Dell and Target before the expiration of the five-business-day period . 105 . Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U .S.C. § 168li(a)(2)(B) by failing to promptly provide to Dell and Target all relevant information

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regarding the dispute received by Equifax from Plaintiff .

106 . Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U . S.C, § 1681 i(a)(4) by
failing to review and consider all relevant information submitted by Plaintiff with respect to disputed information .

107. Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated 15 U .S.C . § 16811(a)(6)(A)
by failing to provide written notice to Plaintiff of the results of the reinvestigation that allegedly occurred on August 14, 2006 .

108 . Equifax willfully and/or negligently violated I 5 U.S .C . § 1681i(a)(7) by
failing to provide to Plaintiff a description of the procedure used by Equifax on August 14, 2006, to determine the accuracy and completeness of information, including the business name and address of any furnisher of information contacted in connection with such information . 109 . As a result of Equi£ax's willful and/or negligent violations of the FCRA,

Plaintiff has suffered and continues to suffer damages, including but not
limited to, emotional distress, insomnia and economic damages . 110 . Plaintiff has suffered mental distress and insomnia due to indisputable

evidence confirming that an Equifax employee manipulated Plaintiffs
credit file on numerous occasions to conceal Plaintiffs identity theft .

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111 . The identity thief that Equifax hired in 2006 did not need personal access to sensitive information to steal identities ; she only needed proximity to thee employees that had access to sensitive information . 112 . At all times pertinent hereto, the conduct of Equifax, as well as that of its agents, servants and/or employees, was malicious, intentional, reckless, willful and was done with either the desire to harm Plaintiff and/or with the knowledge that their actions would very likely harm Plaintiff . 113 . Therefore, Plaintiff is entitled to punitive damages to punish Equifax for its deliberate, willful, malicious and outrageous conduct and to deter Equifax and any other credit reporting agency from engaging in such misconduct in the future . 114. Plaintiff is entitled to recover damages pursuant to 15 U.S.C . § 1681n for willful violations and/or 15 U .S .C. § 16810 for negligent violations . DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL 115. Plaintiff demands a jury trial on all issues so friable . PRAYER FOR RELIEF WI-IEREFORE, Plainti ff seeks judgment in Plaintiffs favor and damages against Equifax and respectfully prays for :

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a. Actual damages in an amount to be determined by the jury ; b. Statutory damages in an amount to be determined by the jury ; c. Punitive Damages in an amount to be determined by the jury ;

d. Costs and expenses incurred in this action and
e. Such other and further relief as the Court may deem just and proper .

Respectfully Submitted,

Dated: January 22, 2009 Selena -Plaintiff', pro se 4355 Cobb Pkwy, Ste J129 Atlanta, GA 30339-3887 Telephone : (404) 723-8916 Email : mas1ow527@gmail .com

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