What Is a Credit Privacy Number?

Andrew Reyes
a hand holding a credit card and a scammer graphics

Low credit scores can happen for many different reasons, and just about anyone can experience a poor credit rating at some point in life. Fixing your credit score will take some time; there is no instant solution to repairing your credit.

Beware of scams that promise instant results. Credit privacy numbers are one example. Learn about CPN’s meaning and the methods used by scammers so that you can recognize them and avoid becoming a victim.

person using macbook and scammer graphics

Table of Contents

CPN Meaning:  What Are CPNs and Where Do They Come From?

CPN can stand for “credit privacy number,” “credit protection number,” or “credit profile number.” These are 9-digit numbers that scammers sell to people who are trying to repair poor credit. They are fabricated or stolen numbers that resemble social security numbers.

The numbers are advertised as a way to prevent a poor credit history from showing up during the process of applying for credit. Regardless of which name is used for a CPN, these numbers are not a legitimate way to apply for a loan or attempt to repair a poor credit rating.

People selling CPN credit numbers often claim that they are issued by the government. They are not. CPN numbers are not created nor recognized by any legitimate branch of government. There is no substitute for a social security number on a loan application or other legal or financial document that requires an SSN.

Are CPN Numbers Legal?

No. Using a CPN number in place of your SSN to hide a poor credit rating is illegal. Providing a fake SSN is a crime; it is lying while trying to secure financing, which is fraud. Using a real SSN that belongs to someone else is even more serious.

If you use an authentic SSN that doesn’t belong to you, you are committing identity theft on top of the crime of fraud.

Remember that the CPN number meaning is not limited to fabricated numbers. The definition may include real social security numbers that are stolen.

Can You Go to Jail for Using a CPN?

Yes, you can be sentenced to up to 30 years in federal prison for fraud and/or identity theft. You would also face hefty financial penalties. Remember that there is no legal substitute for providing your SSN when required on a legal form, including a credit application.

Can You Get a Loan With CPN Credit?

No, you can not legally take out a loan using a CPN. You must use your real SSN. Attempting to get a loan with a CPN will lead to trouble far worse than being denied credit. Don’t add jail time and massive fines to your problems.

There are legitimate ways to repair a poor credit rating, but trying to cover it up isn’t one of them.

How Can You Avoid CPN Scams?

If you have been the victim of identity theft, or find yourself in one of a few other rare circumstances, you may be eligible to acquire a new social security number. In this case, the new SSN will be issued by the Social Security Administration. You will not be charged a fee for your replacement number.

To avoid confusion, never accept a replacement number from anyone else, and don’t pay a fee for one. If a form requires your SSN, don’t provide any other number. Even with a replacement SSN, your credit history remains and will be associated with your new SSN.

The easiest way to avoid scams is to be aware of the CPN’s meaning and how these numbers are marketed. Know that these scams exist and remember the traditional wisdom about things that seem too good to be true.

Don’t listen to anyone who promises to instantly fix your bad credit; there is no legal way to erase a poor credit history.

Can a CPN Help Protect Against Identity Theft?

In theory, yes, a CPN could protect you against identity theft, since it is a number that isn’t legally or financially connected to your social security number. Using a fake number would shield your authentic identification.

However, in an attempt to acquire a CPN, you may actually be committing identity theft and putting yourself at risk of considerable legal liability. If you use a stolen social security number, even if you are unaware that the number is a legitimate SSN that belongs to someone else, you run a great risk of ending up in prison.

What Is an Employer Identification Number (EIN)?

An employer identification number is commonly referred to as an EIN. Employers and individuals can acquire an EIN from the Internal Revenue Service. An EIN is used instead of a social security number on tax forms, to track and record income and tax information.

An EIN may be used as part of a business loan application, but an SSN will usually also be required. Banks want a guarantee from a person, not just a tax entity, and they will want to see your credit history, not just your tax forms.

Can you use an EIN instead of an SSN when applying for credit? No, this isn’t legal. While an EIN is not part of the definition of a CPN number meaning, it is also not a legal alternative to providing your social security number.

Your EIN is connected to your SSN regardless. Using an employer identification number is not a way to circumvent a poor credit history. It is not legal to provide any alternative number, including an EIN, as though it were your social security number.

How Can You Secure Credit With a Poor Credit History?

There is no legal way to instantly erase bad credit. Anyone who guarantees that they can fix your credit score overnight is selling snake oil. Don’t fall for it. The legal consequences are not worth whatever it is you were hoping to purchase.

That said, there are ways to repair your credit, and the effort is worth it. Many Americans have low credit scores for various reasons, and it’s not the end of the world. You can rebuild your credit and improve your credit rating.

It will take a little time and effort to get your credit score back to an advantageous level, but rebuilding your credit is effective and it won’t land you in prison. Learning to manage your credit and payments also ensures that you will know how to protect your good credit in the future.

What Is the Right Way To Improve Your Credit Score?

These steps may be challenging at first but will get easier as you gain ground and get control of your finances. They are certainly preferable to attempting to use fake CPN credit. Understanding your credit score is essential to success.

1. Pay Bills On Time

Paying your bills on time improves your credit score. Timely payment is an important factor in determining your score with all of the credit reporting agencies.

Not insignificantly, paying on time also saves you money. When you pay bills late, you accrue extra interest, and worse, you may be penalized with late fees. Fees and interest add up quickly. Remember that you get nothing in return for fees and interest.

2. Pay Overdue Bills

Do everything you can to catch up on overdue payments. If you are struggling, it may be worthwhile to contact your creditors and request help. Some lenders will restructure your payment plan to help you get your accounts current.

3. Review Your Credit Report

Don’t use a fake CPN number to try and protect your identity and your credit. Instead, review and monitor your credit report. You can request a free credit report and look through it to see what items are affecting your credit.

You may find errors that you can dispute and will also be able to see if there are any fraudulent attempts to secure credit in your name.

Keep an eye on your credit report to monitor improvements as you repair your credit as well. This is a much safer and more effective way to protect your financial identity than attempting to use fabricated CPN credit numbers.

4. Use a Secured Credit Card

To start building your credit, using a secured credit card is a good option. Banks will issue you a card with a credit limit matching a deposit that you make to open the account. You are then able to use the card as you would any other credit card. Make your payments on time to improve your credit score.

5. Don’t Use All of Your Available Credit

Credit reporting agencies also like to see that you are not using all of the credit available to you. Ideally, keep your credit use under 30% of your total credit if you can.

CPN Meaning is Fraud and Fraud Won’t Fix Your Credit

Raising your credit score isn’t going to happen by magic. If you are finding it frustrating to work through fixing your credit rating on your own, consider a credit repair service. Depending on your individual situation, you may opt to work with a specialist to help you negotiate with lenders and credit bureaus.

It’s disappointing that the CPN meaning isn’t what you’d hoped, but there are legitimate, effective, and legal routes to mending your credit score and rebuilding your credit history.

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