ChileLabor — 26 July 2011

El Mercurio reported this weekend that they would delete from the DICOM system the accounts of certain credit card holders whose debt had been reported to DICOM.  (DICOM in Chile the credit reporting agency owner by Equifax).

The newspaper said that Walmart had been sued by SERNAC (National Consumer Service) which is a consumer advocacy group.  According to the article, credit card holders of Walmart Chile who had previously resolved their debt issues with Lider (which was acquired by Walmart in 2009) still had their names listed in the DICOM database.  This was causing great harm to the customers because when their names are listed in DICOM it is difficult for these people to obtain further credit, rent an apartment, buy a car, subscribe for internet or cable, sign up for certain medical optional treatments, and so forth.

SERNAC said thay would fine Walmart unless they removed these customers from Walmart.  The headline of this article quoted the head of Walmart Chile saying, “I would like to believe that this [actions of the Piñera government”] were not politically motivated.


It is the observation of this writer that DICOM is more difficult for Chileans to navigate than is the Equifax reporting service in the USA.  In the USA Equifax assigns you a credit score based upon how you have repaid your credit card and other loan debts.  Banks use this score when considering whether to give you a loan. If you have a bad credit score you could probably still buy a house or a car or get a student loan.  But DICOM appears more of a problem here in Chile for the consumer given the anecdotal evidence I have seen.  First, student protests here recently made complaints against DICOM part of their protest.  Second, people here who I have know have had to resolve their issues with DICOM and creditors before they can buy something knew.  In the USA you just pay more for your loan but you can still get a loan.  So given that I would say that DICOM is more of a problem for Chileans than in Equifax for Americans.  Again this is just an anecdotal observation.


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