Home Business Services Review of Dun & Bradstreet, Inc.

Dun & Bradstreet, Inc. review: Crooks

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3:12 pm EDT
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Have you ever heard of a company called Dun & Bradstreet? They are 'sort' of like Experian for businesses - supposedly helping their subscribers to make credit decisions about suppliers. Recently a potential client of one of our company's ran a D&B report on our company. The score came back very low and the company scored a 7 on a 9 point scale of likeliness of failure. Ouch. I contacted D&B and asked them what the issue was. They indicated that they only had four of our vendors reporting payment history and one of them reported a 90 day late payment of $50. I was flabbergasted. They were publicly reporting that our business was likely to fail (7 out of 9) because one of four vendors indicated that we were late on a $50 invoice. The D&B rep indicated that I could pay approximately $400 and begin 'building' my report through a tool called Self Monitor. I paid the fee and began adding my vendors to the system.

The company pays out around $250, 000 in payables each month to more than 100 vendors. Additionally we have credit lines ranging from $1, 000 to $500, 000. Out of these vendors D&B only had four. Our controller added more than 100 vendors and we were surprised how many would not agree to report payments to D&B. Companies like AMEX, Chase and Ingram Micro were unwilling to share credit history with D&B - later I learned they didn't want to pay D&B a fee for the pleasure. Evidently, D&B is collecting fees from the companies that report and from the companies that are reported on. Wow.

One week later we were able to raise our 'PAYDEX' score from 66 to 77 by just adding a few additional vendors to the system. This morning I got an alert from D&B explaining that they had INCREASED our companies financial risk number from 7 to 8 - meaning they estimated that there was a HIGH risk of our company's failure in the next 12 months. Our 'PayDex' score was improving, but D&B is now reporting that we are likely to fail. This company is ten years old and has been profitable since 2002 - why would D&B suggest we were likely to fail? What data are they using to come to this conclusion. Here is the chart the D&B account rep showed me:

Just a week after we opened out account with D&B and began helping them build our credit someone in the computer manufacturing business suggests that we have a payment 61-90+ old that is less than $1, 000. I talked to our controller and she has no record of any late invoice - much less one for less than $1, 000. I asked the D&B rep who was reporting the 61-90+ day late payment, but they would not release the name of the vendor. I assume the vendor who reported the late payment wants to get paid - why wouldn't they want me to be able to contact them to get paid? The D&B rep couldn't explain why the policy was this way. I then asked the D&B rep why they would issue a public report that we were likely to fail despite the fact that 99% of our vendors are reporting we pay within terms? I reiterated that we spend about $250, 000 a month in payables - it seems crazy that a company would publicly report that we were likely to fail because an anonymous company reported that we were late on an invoice less than $1, 000. She could not explain why.

I think there is a potential for a massive class action against D&B on several counts - but most importantly their propensity to offer credit advice without sufficient data. D&B should have to disclose that on accounts, like ours, they simply don't have enough data one way or another. They can't possibly know whether or not our company is likely to fail based on the data they have collected. Their data is used by our potential clients to hire us. How many clients have looked at this data and decided that since we are 'likely to fail in the next 12 months' they will choose another vendor? How many other clients have low PAYDEX scores and 'High Risk of Failure' warnings where there is little or no data available? I would be happy to sign our company up as a lead plaintiff. I can show a loss of at least $1, 000, 000 in billings as a result of their 66 Paydex report on our company. Let me know if you want to join by filling out this form: D&B Class Action Sign Up

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Dec 10, 2018 6:12 pm EST

We have NO late payments and have been in business for over 20 years. I looked at the DB report on us, and simply put there is NO information in it. Our credit rating is good, but the "viability rating" is "fair".

I am not going to provide D&B with any financial data, they are a private company (although the Feds, such as the SBA make having a DUNS number mandatory). So they simply have no info on our company but have rated us nonetheless.

Since someone might take the Duns rating seriously and not do business with our company because of or "fair" viability rating, D&B may do us real material harm. This harm would be because of a rating given in the absence of adequate (any, in this case) information. That does seem actionable provided one can demonstrate an actual case of harm. But one is unlikely to even know.

Aug 05, 2015 10:23 am EDT

I am in. if you start a class action, I am with you. We donot ever pay late, but our supplier risk rating is 9. I told D&B, if I lose a contract over this, you got yourself a lawsuit.

Mar 02, 2014 2:34 am EST

I agree we had similar experience

We have 2 late payments on our records which they won't take away and won't tell us who it is from until we buy "concierge service for 10, 000$ :)

I am like right

Aug 15, 2013 1:41 pm EDT

D&B are scam artists using outdated information to blackmail companies into spending $$ to correct erroneous information. additionally I just had a D&B employee tell me that they had just as much right to our company information as we do.
They have a right to our information? Go figure.
Crooks by any othe name.

Sep 26, 2012 6:22 pm EDT

Re read what you just wrote. Yes it is a scam, you just paid them money to add the names of the four vendors so that they can then add them to their own data base and then call them too with the same pitch. :(

Also how can they prove activity to see who is running your credit scores? And if another business were running a credit check, so what? it doesnt effect your scale or ranking vs personal credit scores. A business is exempt from losing points when a check is done.

So they are giving you false information.

There office and call center is in Tucson Arizona ;in the Merryl Lynch Building 4th floor on Broadway ave. After seeing the the call center myself and the employees they hire there, are just a step above debt collector.. Dun & Bradstreet Credit Corporation is only borrrowing the D&B name and have only been around for about four years. You got along fine without them before. Why the urgent need now? As far as I can see, the serivice you are getting is more inert than becoming a member of BBB.

Sep 02, 2012 9:35 am EDT

If you pay your bills STUPID you will not have a problem with Duns.

Jul 19, 2012 8:44 pm EDT

I took a seminar about dandb. I liked what the guy talked about so I signed up and started my account. One month in to this, I received an e-mail telling me my paydex was 80 and that my risk was 2. In less than two days after this, I received another email telling me I had dropped to a 20 paydex which in turn put in hi risk. I call them and had to speak to 9 people in order to get to one lady who had me send her my info, tax returns, bills, and corporation papers. It took her four long months to get me out of high risk. No one working for a company this large should not be able to return a call, now i got out and they allowed a company to hit me with a 50.000k 120 day late. When that didn't work, the same company hit me with $750.00 late payment. I gave a couple of my clients their payment history and now I'm in high risk again, after one year off this bull I'm going to file a class action suite Monday morning. My lawyer will be on this. They also messed his company up. I've gotten everyone I need to get it started. My cousin is a U.S. Senator and great lawyer. It'll take $1200.00 and I'm spending it proudly.

Feb 21, 2012 8:01 pm EST

Check the web. There are law firms that will be bringing a class action lawsuit. I signed up as I received a letter today stating that my company was also rated as being High Risk for Financial Stress and that I needed to spend hundreds of dollars to improve my score. Again, check the web, and sign up to be part of a class action law suit.

Nov 28, 2011 12:13 pm EST

I went through all the same stuff as the above complaint and bought the self monitoring service.
I challenged the bad info on the report and thought it was taken care of nope same info comes back like 90 days out on wholesale paper we never purchase paper we are a machine shop.
A challenge takes about 30-90 days to cycle and be back on the report.
After my year service was up they called for me to renew I said no you know you have bad info and don't fix it that is when they told me I have to dispute the info 3 times and then they will block it.DnB has a BS system that is geared to keep you paying with false info on their part why should I have to pay for their mistakes.Businesses can lie about their info and DnB does not check it.DnB has a good thing going and they will blow it with this type of business practice, just wait it won't take long and 60 minutes or dateline will expose that DnB is spreading bad info, something will get done or they will go away.It is easy to sign up for a class action law suit against DnB, the Internet has pages and pages of info about how DnB does business and how errant the info is.

Aug 14, 2011 5:12 am EDT

You do not have to have your companys information listed if you choose not to. If you don't agree with the information on your file then you call and opt out...simple as that. You obviously do not know how D&B works and are upset because people can buy your financial report records and make an educated decision before doing business with your company. if the company has a reputation that is as impeccable as you claim, have your report pulled. It's just that simple.

Aug 11, 2011 3:15 pm EDT

Any company who would rely on their data would also know that almost all the data they have is erroneous or made-up. Fraudulent is the legal term

I personally don't know anybody in business who doesn't realize that all D&B's data is made-up, but most businesses seem to try to take the easy way out by having their new accounts department stick in the DUNS number, fill in the blanks, and call it a day.

D&B has absolutely no idea the likelihood of a business going under. They willingly put lies in their reports, based on your paying them to do it.

I've never given them one piece of information in the 20 years we've been in business.

They call every year or so, and if someone in our company is stupid enough to transfer the telemarketer to me, I generally tell the idiot from D&B to go f-ck themselves. One year this broad's boss called back and said they were going to file a sexual harassment suit.

They probably hear that 100 times a day, and call every Xth caller to tell them they're going to file suit. The people who work for that company actually fall into some category between idiot and criminal. They all know they are breaking the law by selling people fraudulent information. I guess you do what you have to to feed your family.