Credit profile numbers, or CPNs, are illegal and are often provided to consumers as part of a credit repair scam, explains the Federal Trade Commission. These numbers are usually stolen Social Security numbers, random nine-digit numbers or employer identification numbers and may not be used instead of a Social Security number.
Many fraudulent companies target customers with offers of new credit histories using CPN numbers, according to the Federal Trade Commission. Any offer of a new number erasing an old credit history is false. Employer identification numbers may not be used instead of Social Security numbers to obtain credit or falsify credit history, and using a stolen Social Security number constitutes identity theft. Only correct Social Security numbers may be used.
CPN numbers are often Social Security numbers obtained from children, the elderly and prison inmates, notes the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. These numbers are used to commit a process called credit file segregation, which utilizes numbers other than the applicant's Social Security number to create a clean credit file or a positive credit history that is separated from the applicant's old credit history information. Since this process uses fraudulent numbers, applicants commit a federal crime in obtaining and using a CPN.