If you got a Social Security number for your child but only use it to get your tax deduction for a dependent, you might want to make sure that no one else is using it.

Featured Credit Card

That’s the latest fraud going around: online only companies selling dormant Social Security numbers to people who want to defraud lenders by getting mortgage credit or other financing they aren't entitled to. The companies refer to their "product" as a CPNs, which stands for credit profile, credit protection, or credit privacy number.

The buyer creates a credit profile (in one case by using another fraudulent company, which reported favorable experience to the credit bureaus) and then uses it to get a mortgage or to run up huge credit card debts that he or she has no intention of ever repaying. If this happens to your child, years later, when he or she tries to buy a house or a car, the credit will be ruined.

The scheme was discovered by Jill Jensen, an FBI agent in the Kansas City field office, during the investigation of a mortgage-fraud case.

According to AP, the numbers are obtained using online public information sources. The numbers are then run through more public information databases to find out of anyone has applied for credit with the numbers and, if not, the numbers are added to the company’s "inventory."

It's not hard to spot. Everyone, underage or not, is entitled to a free copy of his or her credit report. Go to annualcreditreport.com and pull a free report for your child, and make sure that he or she hasn't run up huge debts or bought property before graduating from 6th grade.