Since you have seen and reviewed a recent credit report, did you look specifically for anything inaccurate? Pay special attention in scouting for items that might not be yours, things that may be yours but do not reflect accurate information and things that were yours but do not belong on the report because they have aged beyond the limits of what can appear on a credit report. Negative items must come off your report after 7 years expect bankruptcy which stays on for 10 years. For the purposes of timing use your last transaction date. For example if you opened an account 11 years ago, made your last payment 8 years ago, the account got sold 5 years ago and a collector called last week, your last transaction would be the payment 8 years ago and that item needs to come off your report. Sales of the account or collector actions do not count.
While removing entires that do not belong on your credit report represents an obligation you have to yourself, remember that removing accurate items or attempting to remove accurate reporting constitutes fraud. Similarly, attempting to forge a new credit history counts as criminal behavior.
The next section guides you through the process of removing inaccurate items from your credit report.