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Identity Guard vs. LifeLock vs. Experian: It’s a fact that identity theft is a growing problem. According to the Federal Trade Commission, identity theft complaints have increased by 47 percent since 2014. One of the most effective ways to protect yourself and your confidential data is to subscribe to one of the many identity theft protection services that are now available (many are paid on a monthly basis.) There are a number of companies offering these identity theft protection services and accounts, but three in particular stand out in the marketplace: LifeLock, Experian and Identity Guard. Here’s a look at some of the pros and cons of each identity theft protection service. Whether you are looking for an Identity Guard review, LifeLock review, Experian review, or IdentityForce review, we have you covered. Read our identity theft protection reviews so you can make the best decision about how to protect yourself and what matters the most.
|Rank||Identity Theft Protection||Best For||Monthly Fee||STL Rating|
|1||Lifelock Identity Theft Protection||Overall Coverage||$8.99||★★★★★|
LifeLock offers proactive identity theft protection by monitoring credit applications in your name and file sharing networks that you use. There are effectively three layers of protection: detect, alert and restore. The service looks for any suspicious activity during which your identity is used to obtain credit, loans or services under your name. When any potentially fraudulent activity is detected, you will be sent a notification by email, text or phone. LifeLock also offers restoration services if your identity is compromised.
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|• Best overall protection||• Can get expensive with extras|
|• Comes with Norton security package||• No fixed cost for family plan|
|• 60-day money back guarantee|
While it may be true that you could do a lot of what LifeLock has to offer for yourself, do you really have the time to set protective measures in place and actively monitor your credit reports and other channels on a regular basis? Would you know what to do if your identity was compromised or your personal information was stolen? These are questions worth asking yourself when weighing DIY tactics against an automated service.
Like many subscription services, LifeLock is available in a range of prices that will depend on your requirements. Lifelock is currently offer discounted rates. The prices are:
If you are wondering about a LifeLock identity theft protection family plan, there isn’t one in the true sense, but they do offer the LifeLock Junior plan*, which allows children under the age of 18 to gain access to the same protection as their parents. Criminals can often resort to targeting a child’s personal records and information, and so LifeLock Junior is a good way for parents to gain peace of mind and ensure their children’s personal information is not stolen. For a family of four with two children under the age of 18, the LifeLock family plan cost would be $31.96.
The consensus with the majority of LifeLock reviews from users is that the service is very good, with many saying the service gives them peace of mind and that they have received alerts when their identity was compromised. LifeLock reviews also seem to illustrate that users appreciate the 24-hour support line, with many LifeLock reviews citing instances of how LifeLock alerted them to fraudulent activity on one of their accounts.
Complaints about LifeLock have noted difficulties in canceling subscriptions and that there is no fixed LifeLock cost for the LifeLock family plan. Some business owners have also complained that certain fraudulent business transactions have not been flagged by the system.
Other complaints referenced the lengthy setup process and outdated website. If you want to know more, check out our full Lifelock review.
LifeLock reviews written by customers show that the company works well for most people. LifeLock customers who enjoy the company’s services say that they get peace of mind because they know that professionals are protecting their personal information. Satisfied customers also write LifeLock reviews about the company’s outstanding customer services.
Several people who use LifeLock say that they have avoided identity theft because of the company’s services. Many customers also say that they know LifeLock does its job well because they receive notifications after opening new credit card accounts.
Unfortunately, some of LifeLock’s customers have negative things to say about the company. A handful of LifeLock reviews state that the company wasn’t able to detect the signs of identity theft. If that’s the case, then they have good reasons to feel upset. After all, LifeLock exists to protect people from identity and data theft.
To be fair, LifeLock states on its website that it cannot stop every instance of identity theft. In fact, no company can catch every sign of identity theft immediately. If you decide to get a LifeLock membership, you should understand that the services provide a layer of protection. It cannot guarantee your safety. You will, however, get reimbursed for any money that was stolen from you.
The specific amount of money that you can get returned depends on your plan. The Standard plan covers up to $25,000 of loss. The Advantage plan covers up to $100,000. The Ultimate Plus plan will reimburse up to $1 million of your stolen funds. Many people find the LifeLock $1 million guarantee attractive.
When it comes to prices, most people think that the LifeLock costs are fair. Since the company doesn’t have a LifeLock family plan, though, households may need to purchase several plans to protect every family member. Without a family plan, LifeLock prices can become more expensive than customers original expect.
Identity Guard is one of the most respected identity theft and fraud security services in the world. Given its prominence, it makes sense that so many people choose the Identity Guard Family Plan. It offers practically everything you could want in a family plan. When you think about Identity Guard versus Lifelock or IdentityForce, you have to consider Identity Guard’s affordable price and long list of services. Assuming that the company helps protect you from identity theft, you won’t have to worry about your plan’s lack of victim assistance services.
* The score you receive with Identity Guard is provided for educational purposes to help you understand your credit. It is calculated using the information contained in your TransUnion credit file. Lenders use many different credit scoring systems, and the score you receive with Identity Guard is not the same score used by lenders to evaluate your credit.
** Identity Theft Insurance underwritten by insurance company subsidiaries or affiliates of American International Group‚ Inc. The description herein is a
|• Affordable with additional discounts||• Does not offer 24/7 customer service|
|• Utilizes IBM Watson for extra protection||• No free trial|
|• Identity theft insurance|
Identity Guard often gets positive reviews from practically everyone who uses the service. In many Identity Guard reviews, you’ll find that clients like that Identity Guard has joined forces with IBM Watson to provide a higher level of identity protection. They appreciate the Identity Guard $1 million identity theft insurance that applies to every plan. Considering the Identity Guard price, technology and comprehensive monitoring services, it’s easy to see why so many people prefer Identity Guard.
Experian has an advantage over other identity theft protection services in that it is one of the main three credit bureaus that need to be monitored to avoid identity theft. Since credit is it’s business, you also get a lot of extra benefits from the service, including ability to dispute items on your credit report directly from the Experian website. It also helps that Experian has direct access to one of your credit reports, so it can be alerted to any fraudulent activity immediately instead of going through a third party. Here’s a full review of Experian’s identity theft protection service, called IdentityWorksSM:
|• Best for monitoring your credit||• Doesn’t provide vault password storage|
|• Provides FICO score updates||• Doesn’t offer 24/7 customer service|
|• Free trial|
One of the main things that makes Experian stand out is its engrained knowledge of credit reports and identity theft. Since it is already one of the three credit bureaus that compiles credit reports, it only made sense for the company to expand into identity theft protection services.
Another thing that makes Experian stand out is the wide range of things that it monitors to help protect against identity theft. The IdentityWorksSM Premium plan, which is cheaper than Lifelock’s highest plan, monitors everything from black market website activity, social security trace activity, change of address, court records, non-credit loan alerts and other areas that have the potential to alert you to identity theft, many that other identity theft protection services do not monitor.
Remember that identity theft protection can not help you with your debt, so if you need help getting your debt in order, try one of the best debt relief services like National Debt Relief or top-rated service Accredited Debt Relief, a review of which you can find here.
Experian is fairly new to the identity theft protection game, and it has been operating as a credit bureau business for decades, so it is difficult to differentiate the credit bureau Experian reviews from the identity theft protection Experian reviews. For example, Experian has an A- from the Better Business Bureau, but that score is mostly reflective of its credit bureau business, so there is no way to tell how that relates to IdentityWorksSM, although if there were any major problems with its identity theft protection service, it would drag the overall grade down much further.
Most other online Experian reviews of IdentityWorksSM give it fairly high marks, which is a good sign for the service. There are few actual consumer reviews of the service, which makes it difficult to determine just how happy actual customers are. Overall, though, from the professional Experian reviews, it seems like Experian’s IdentityWorksSM does a good job at identity theft protection.
Lifelock, Experian and Identity Guard are some of the top names in identity theft protection, but there are other options if you are not satisfied with any of those. Here are some lesser-known names in identity theft protection that might help you make the right decision.
If you’re comparing Identity Guard versus IdentityForce versus Lifelock, then you will have a difficult decision to make. All three companies offer good services that protect clients from identity theft and fraud. At $14.99 per month, though, it costs a little bit more than some of its competitors. Considering that other companies provide extensive features that check black market websites and protect you from lost wallets, you may want to avoid IdentityForce unless you want a simple, straightforward approach to keeping your identity secure.
|• Great family plan options||• Limited options for plan coverage|
|• Dedicated case manager||• No money back guarantee|
|• Free trial|
IdentityForce doesn’t offer as many identity theft guard services as other companies, but it has an affordable price that makes it appealing to people who want basic coverage. Overall, clients appreciate that the company gives them dedicated case managers, comprehensive monitoring services and strong customer service. When comparing Identity Guard versus IdentityForce, some people fall on Identity Guard’s side because the company offers more plans. Those who like to keep things simple, however, often prefer IdentityForce.
IdentityForce has a strong following and maintains contracts with a number of government agencies, including the FAA and the FBI. Overall, user reviews are positive, with many verified users citing the company’s outstanding customer service and the speed with which restoration and protection services were implemented.
One of the top complaints among IdentityForce users is that there are also only two plans, with features varying quite significantly between the two. A number of users and prospective users have said they would prefer a third plan that offers features and pricing that sits somewhere in the middle of the two plans currently offered.
TrustedID is actually owned by Equifax, and considering the recent Equifax data breach and the credit bureau’s its recent documented issues with identity theft, it seems like it might have some issues when it comes to reputation when dealing with identity theft protection. Nevertheless, we have done an in-depth look at TrustedID to give you a better understanding of how the identity theft protection service works.
|• Solid customer service||• More expensive than competitors|
|• Offers ID theft insurance||• Limited protection|
|• History of data breaches|
TrustedID is much like Experian’s IdentityWorksSM in that it is owned by one of the three credit bureaus, Equifax, so it has a knowledge of credit reports and identity theft. Unlike IdentityWork, TrustedID was an independent identity theft protection company before it was bought by Equifax, so it combines its own knowledge of identity theft with Equifax’s knowledge of credit.
The other thing that makes TrustedID stand out is its family plan. You can add everyone within your immediate family to your plan for just $29.99, which is a great deal for larger families. If it’s just you and your spouse, other service provide better discounts for spouses and significant others.
TrustedID tends to get mixed reviews, both from professionals and actual consumers. TrustedID reviews from professionals do tend to be more positive, but generally top out at 4 out of 5 stars, making it second to heavy hitters like Lifelock and Experian. TrustedID also does not have a rating from the Better Business Bureau, so there is no way to compare it to other identity theft protection services in that field.
Consumer reviews of TrustedID tend to be a little more harsh, although most online company reviews do tend to skew more toward angry customers as opposed to happy customers. A combination of reviews on Yelp and other consumer sites talked about how TrustedID’s customer service was good, but what the service offered was often confusing, and some complained about being charged more than they originally agreed to.
Keep in mind that while identity theft protection services do monitor your credit report, they cannot make changes or improve your credit in any way. If you are looking for ways to improve your credit, check out our best credit repair reviews to get a better idea on how they work. Our Sky Blue review and Lexington Law review compare the top two companies.