If you’ve got a lot of questions about CPNs, whether they’re legal, how to get one, and what they even do, you’re in the right place! Keep on reading for the full low-down.
What is a CPN?
A credit privacy number or CPN (often called a credit protection number, credit profile number, or consumer protection number), is a nine-digit number sold by scammers under the pretense that it can replace your Social Security number.
CPNs are not government issued. In fact, they are often repurposed stolen/leaked Social Security numbers — potentially from children, prison inmates, or the deceased. Therefore, by using a CPN, you could be committing identity theft without even realizing it.
How does a credit privacy number work?
Scammers often advertise CPNs as a way for people with poor credit to start afresh. The thinking behind it is, if someone were to use a CPN on a credit application in place of their Social Security number, the credit lender wouldn’t be able to view their real credit history. However, the use of a CPN to try to hide one’s credit history, and therefore misrepresenting one’s identity, would be considered fraud.
Is a CPN legal?
CPNs are illegal. They are not issued by the federal government — they are simply stolen/leaked Social Security numbers. By using a CPN in place of your Social Security number, you would be committing fraud.
Can a CPN number fix your credit?
This is how CPNs are most often advertised/sold: as a way for people with a poor credit rating to get a fresh start. Unfortunately, however, the use of a CPN is illegal, so by using one you wouldn’t be fixing your credit, you would simply be committing fraud.
How do CPN and credit repair scams work?
Scammers/cybercriminals sell CPNs on the internet/dark web and pitch them to prospective buyers as a way to repair/hide their poor credit history. However, with CPNs being nothing more than stolen/leaked Social Security numbers, they are simply a scam. Therefore, no matter how much someone tries to convince you that you should buy a CPN, don’t take the bait!
How to Protect Yourself Against ID Theft
With all this talk of stolen/leaked data, you might be wondering what you can do to keep a watchful eye on yours. Well, with Trend Micro ID Protection — our new and 100% free tool — you can easily stay in the know regarding the safety of your data.
With Trend Micro ID Protection you can:
- Check to see if your data (email address, phone number, password, social media account) has been exposed in a leak.
- Secure your social media accounts with our Social Media Account Monitoring tool, with which you’ll receive a personal report.
- Receive the strongest tough-to-hack password suggestions from our advanced AI.
If you’ve found this article an interesting and/or helpful read, please SHARE it with friends and family to help keep the online community secure and protected. Also, please consider clicking the LIKE button below.
You Might Also Be Interested In...
Get all the latest cybersecurity news