In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, then-Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren led the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and it has since delivered billions in relief to at least 27 million consumers harmed by financial malpractice, its website says.

But a study released Wednesday by indicates the vast majority of Americans don’t know it exists.

The study indicated 81 percent of respondents had never heard of the CFPB, 12 percent approved of it and 4 percent did not. When pollsters asked the 1,001 participants, half of whom responded by cellphone and half by landline, whether they believed an agency carrying out the bureau’s verbatim mission statement should exist, 80 percent replied in the affirmative.

“It was interesting to see what percentage of people responded favorably to the concept of the bureau,” versus the CFPB itself, Matt Schulz, a senior industry analyst at, said of the study. The results, he said, were “a sign that, even though there’s a big debate over how the agency should be structured,” support for such an institution’s existence was definitely in place.

House Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas, introduced a bill Feb. 14 to get rid of it, which as of Wednesday included 23 co-sponsors, all of whom were Republican.

The study’s findings, which had a margin of error of 5.4 percentage points, mirrored a July study indicating that 92 percent of Americans find financial regulation important, with 72 percent seeing such efforts as “very important.” Just five years after the 2008 crash, two-thirds of Americans believed the federal government hadn’t “taken adequate measures to prevent another financial crisis in the future,” according to a 2013 Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Schulz attributed the apparent invisibility of the CFPB to the prominence of the major banks forced to cough up large fines for wrongdoing, which have likely “overshadowed” the bureau in headlines.

In September, for example, the CFPB fined Wells Fargo & Co. $100 million for pushing its employees to open covert accounts that charged clients unauthorized fees. In the early fall of 2016, Wells Fargo and its massive penalty dominated the news, but, then again, so did the CFPB’s creator.