Mulvaney wants to make CFPB like the FCC and FTC and all the other agencies that have been totally neutered and rendered impotent by a Congress in hock to campaign contributors who crack the whip and watch their minions jump.
A consumer attorney in Ohio isn't having any of this, and has put the entire CFPB consumer complaints database online outside the CFPB's control, and promises to keep it updated -- so even as Mulvaney tries to hide the complaints, this new database will ensure that real people will be able to access it.
DannLaw launches "Scoundrels, Scams and Cheats" database to ensure public access to CFPB consumer complaint reports
On April 25, Mick Mulvaney, the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau told a group of financial services lobbyists and executives that he would soon hide the Bureau's consumer complaint database from the American people and the media. They applauded.
Today that applause stopped as DannLaw founder and former Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann outlined his law firm's plan to undo Mulvaney's betrayal of the public trust. "I am pleased to announce that DannLaw has downloaded all the information in the CFPB database and uploaded it into one that will remain accessible to the public and the media once Mulvaney carries out his threat," Dann said. "Mulvaney, who is owned by the financial services industry, doesn't own the material in the CFPB's files, the public does. From this day forward, consumers will always be able to review and assess it by logging onto www.dannlaw.com/complaint-database/
Dann said his firm would update the database monthly by lodging Freedom of Information Act requests for any new complaints lodged with the Bureau. "If Mulvaney won't turn the reports over voluntarily we're prepared to take him to court, monthly if need be," Dann said. "No matter how hard he may try, we're not going to allow them to hide this information from the American people."
Dann noted that although Mulvaney has the authority to shut down the public-facing side of the database, the Bureau must, by law, continue to accept complaints. "We've placed links to the CFPB's complaint form on www.dannlaw.com and we will encourage people to continue to report abuses and illegal behavior," he said. "We're sure the director is going to bury the
complaint form on an obscure page on the Bureau's website. We want to make it easy for consumers to find and use it."
Set up in 2012, the database, which contains more than 1,000,000 complaints lodged against financial firms, has become a critically important resource for Americans who want to avoid being cheated or scammed, the media, academics, and regulators who have used it to gather evidence against companies that violate consumer protection laws. It's also become a major source of embarrassment for Equifax, Wells Fargo and other companies that have been the subject of thousands of complaints in recent years.
Dann said he's not surprised that those companies have been attempting to shut down the database since it was set up or that Mulvaney is about to answer their prayers. "Mulvaney opposed the creation of the CFPB when he was a member of Congress which also isn't surprising when you consider that he's accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from banks, credit card companies, payday lenders, and other financial services companies during his career," he said. "I'm sure they're pleased that they've gotten exactly what they paid for: a guy who puts Wall Street's interests above those of the American people at the drop of a check-laden hat."
Along with the searchable database, the firm created a "Hall of Shame" list of the companies consumers have complained about most and instructions for accessing and reviewing reports.
The Hall of Shame is posted at www.dannlaw.com/scoundrels-scams-and-cheats-hall-of-shame/