The good news is that CIFAS markers can be challenged. The following steps explain each part of the process of removing CIFAS markers.
It is possible in some instances to remove CIFAS markers from the database.
Step 1: Request a CIFAS letter
Make a Direct Subject Access Request (DSAR) to CIFAS, requesting a letter setting out the details of the marker(s) that they hold on their database.
This can often be a relatively small amount of information, and the institution that supplied it is not required to provide the evidence this was based on.
Step 2: Contact the institution that issued the marker and request removal
Once the CIFAS letter has been received, you can then contact the institution that issued your marker to request further information before asking for the marker to be removed.
Step 3: Request CIFAS review
If the institution turns down your request for the marker to be removed, you can then request a review directly with the CIFAS, provided that a final response letter has been issued by the institution.
CIFAS are required to adjudicate on the matter within 14 days.
Step 4: Complain to the relevant ombudsman or complaint service
If CIFAS uphold the institution’s decision and refuse to remove the marker, it’s possible to raise a complaint with the relevant ombudsman for the institution that put the marker in place.
If, for example, it was a bank, then the Financial Ombudsman would be the relevant authority to contact.
If it was a mobile phone company, the relevant ombudsman would be the Communications and Internet Services Adjudication Scheme (CISAS).