TRANS UNION HALTS SALE OF MAILING LISTS

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(April 25, 2001) -- Trans Union Corp. is complying with a court ruling to suspend the sale of mailing lists drawn from consumer credit records, even as it continues to consider an appeal.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia had ordered the company on April 16 to either appeal the case or suspend the sale within 10 days. Trans Union was the last of the major credit-reporting agencies to sell "target marketing product" lists to marketers and has been engaged in a long-running battle with the Federal Trade Commission about whether sale of the lists was legal.

The FTC had argued that because the information is derived from credit reports, the Fair Credit Reporting Act bars Trans Union from selling the information. Trans Union had argued the law only covers the sale of information on individual transactions, and that the sale of names and addresses of people who have, for instance, a mortgage and credit card are legal.

Trans Union officials declined to discuss the effect of the change or to say when a decision would be made on further appeals. -- Ira Teinowitz

Copyright April 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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