10 Best ID Theft Protection Services for 2020

[Tested and Reviewed]

We don’t usually find ourselves talking about identity theft until it happens. So it’s better to be safe than sorry.

What you need is to invest in an ID theft protection service. 

We compiled a list with the 10 best ID theft protection options for you. In this article, you’ll find: 

  • detailed reviews, outlining the pros, cons, features, support and pricing of all the solutions
  • our bullet-proof in-house research methodology
  • a buyer’s guide on how to choose the most fitting service

Here’s how it goes:

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1. LifeLock

LifeLock is jam-packed with credit and identity monitoring services. It can offer everything from dark web scanning to lost wallet protection. The best part? LifeLock is one of the most affordable solutions on the market. Full Review

  • Large feature set
  • Affordable 1st-year options
  • User-friendly interface
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LifeLock is jam-packed with credit and identity monitoring services. It can offer everything from dark web scanning to lost wallet protection. The best part? LifeLock is one of the most affordable solutions on the market. Full Review

Free Trial

No

Customer Support

24/7

U.S.-based Identity Restoration Specialists

Yes

Identity & Social Security Number Alerts

Yes

Stolen Wallet Protection

Yes

USPS Address Change Verification

Yes

Dark Web Monitoring

Yes

Privacy Monitor

Yes

2. Identity Guard

Founded in 1996, Identity Guard is one of the best ID theft protection services with easy-to-set-up individual and family plans. It offers some of the best online identity theft protection services and is now available as mobile apps. Full Review

  • IBM Watson AI Scanning
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Good insurance policy
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Founded in 1996, Identity Guard is one of the best ID theft protection services with easy-to-set-up individual and family plans. It offers some of the best online identity theft protection services and is now available as mobile apps. Full Review

Free Trial

No

Customer Support

24/7

Credit Bureaus Monitored

TransUnion, Experian, Equifax

Bank accounts monitored

No

Investment account monitored

No

Maximum ID-Theft insurance

$1 million

Plans

Individuals, Family

Two-step verification

No

3. IdentityForce

IdentityForce is one of the best credit and identity theft protection services. It has quite a unique set of features. It offers you extensive protection, including junk and spam mail opt-out, social media monitoring, etc. And to put the cherry on top, you also get push notifications! Full Review

  • A broad set of features
  • Comprehensive monitoring
  • Insurance protection for all plans
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IdentityForce is one of the best credit and identity theft protection services. It has quite a unique set of features. It offers you extensive protection, including junk and spam mail opt-out, social media monitoring, etc. And to put the cherry on top, you also get push notifications! Full Review

Free trial period

Yes

Customer Support

24/7

Mobile Device Security

Yes

Dark Web Monitoring

Yes

Smart SSN Tracker

Yes

Credit Reports and Scores

Yes

Advanced Fraud Monitoring

Yes

Online PC Protection Tools

Yes

4. myFICO

myFICO is among the best ID theft protection programs with. It shines with its extensive credit reporting feature set. Add the fact that the mother company is a household name and choosing myFICO becomes a no-brainer. Full Review

  • Powerful features
  • ID theft simulator
  • Clean interface
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myFICO is among the best ID theft protection programs with. It shines with its extensive credit reporting feature set. Add the fact that the mother company is a household name and choosing myFICO becomes a no-brainer. Full Review

Free Trial

No

Customer Support

24/7

FICO score simulator

Yes

FICO score analysis

Yes

Interest Rate Estimator

Yes

Historical FICO Tracking Graph

Yes

Extensive Cyberfraud Solutions

Yes

Identity Restoration

Yes

5. Complete ID

Complete ID is among the best identity theft protection services in 2020. With its superb dark web surveillance feature, it keeps identity thieves at bay by detecting suspicious activities as soon as they happen. And it does so, without breaking the bank! Full Review

  • Affordable plans
  • 3-Bureau Credit Monitoring
  • Two-factor authentication
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Complete ID is among the best identity theft protection services in 2020. With its superb dark web surveillance feature, it keeps identity thieves at bay by detecting suspicious activities as soon as they happen. And it does so, without breaking the bank! Full Review

Free Trial

No

Customer Support

24/7

Dark Web Monitoring

Yes

Credit Monitoring

Yes

Insurance coverage

Up to $1 million

Payday loan monitoring

Yes

Annual Credit Report

Yes

Criminal Record Monitoring

Yes

6. ID Watchdog

ID Watchdog covers everything from monitoring sex offenders registries to bank accounts and public reports. It’s been around for quite a while, can boast an A+ rating from Better Business Bureau and is surprisingly affordable. What more can you want? Full Review

  • Great interface
  • Affordable
  • Effective resolution of identity thefts
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ID Watchdog covers everything from monitoring sex offenders registries to bank accounts and public reports. It’s been around for quite a while, can boast an A+ rating from Better Business Bureau and is surprisingly affordable. What more can you want? Full Review

Free Trial

No

Customer Support

24/7

Specialized support for children

Yes

Credit Freeze Assistance

Yes

Dark Web Monitoring

Yes

Credit Report Monitoring

Yes

Information Privacy

Yes

Identity Theft Insurance

Yes

7. Experian IdentityWorks

IdentityWorks by Experian might just be the best identity theft protection service because of its 30-day free trial. The premium plans feature unique goodies like 3-Bureau credit reporting and additional alerts with respect to payday loans, social media networks and court records. Full Review

  • Option to lock/unlock Experian credit reports
  • Free trial available
  • Comprehensive material for self-help
Visit Website

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IdentityWorks by Experian might just be the best identity theft protection service because of its 30-day free trial. The premium plans feature unique goodies like 3-Bureau credit reporting and additional alerts with respect to payday loans, social media networks and court records. Full Review

Free Trial

Yes

Customer Support

24/7

3-Bureau FICO Score and Credit Monitoring

Yes

Dark Web Monitoring

Yes

Address Change Monitoring

Yes

Court Records Monitoring

Yes

Social Media Monitoring

Yes

Payday Loan Monitoring

Yes

8. PrivacyGuard

PrivacyGuard provides some of the best credit monitoring and identity theft protection services for its price point. It will protect your personal information, monitor your credit scores and reports and scan even the dark web for any signs of fraud using your name. Full Review

  • Reasonable pricing
  • Comprehensive credit and identity monitoring
  • 3-Bureau monthly credit reports
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PrivacyGuard provides some of the best credit monitoring and identity theft protection services for its price point. It will protect your personal information, monitor your credit scores and reports and scan even the dark web for any signs of fraud using your name. Full Review

Free trial

No

Customer Support

24/7

Dark Web Scanning

No

Triple-Bureau Daily Credit Monitoring

24/7

Monthly Triple-Bureau Credit Reports and Scores

Yes

Sex Offenders Registry Monitoring

Yes

USPS Address Change Monitoring

Yes

Debit and Credit Card Monitoring

Yes

9. IDShield

IDShield is an affordable and flexible solution, suitable for all looking for comprehensive insurance coverage. It keeps you safe by scanning the web for your data and alerts you if it finds anything fishy. It’s also one of the few coming with a free trial! Full Review

  • 30-Day Free Trial
  • Affordable
  • Easy to use
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IDShield is an affordable and flexible solution, suitable for all looking for comprehensive insurance coverage. It keeps you safe by scanning the web for your data and alerts you if it finds anything fishy. It’s also one of the few coming with a free trial! Full Review

Free Trial

Yes

Customer Support

24/7

Dark Web Surveillance

Yes

Credit Report Dispute Settlement

Yes

Fraud Expert Consulting

Yes

Social Media Monitoring

Yes

Financial Account Monitoring

Yes

Monthly Credit Score Tracker

Yes

10. McAfee Identity Theft Protection Standard

McAfee is a well-known name and we’re not talking antiviruses only. With the vision to protect all aspects of people’s lives, McAfee’s Identity Theft Protection delivers peace of mind in an era looming threats. It has all types of monitoring that come to mind. Full Review

  • Comprehensive cyber monitoring
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Always-on SSN tracing
Visit Website

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McAfee is a well-known name and we’re not talking antiviruses only. With the vision to protect all aspects of people’s lives, McAfee’s Identity Theft Protection delivers peace of mind in an era looming threats. It has all types of monitoring that come to mind. Full Review

Free Trial

Yes

Customer Support

24/7

Cyber Monitoring

Yes

Credit Monitoring

Yes

SSN Tracing

Yes

Smart Metrics

Yes

Sex Offenders Registry Monitoring

Yes

Recovery Services

Yes

How We Tested and Ranked the Best ID Theft Protection Services?

After a stringent shortlisting procedure, we compiled a list of top 30 best identity theft services. We purchased subscriptions for each and checked for:

  • Number of credit agencies monitored – whether the service monitors reports from the 3 bureaus, and how extensively
  • Insurance – we selected the services with the best-in-class insurance schemes
  • Monitoring – how extensively the service monitors the web for your data
  • Apps – we tested the mobile apps and picked only the best in terms of ease of use and available features
  • Customer Service – we wanted the best possible customer service
  • Pricing –  a major deciding factor for our ranking process

Detailed Reviews

LifeLock
LifeLock

BEST FOR

Privacy-minded individuals looking for an overall package

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  • Large feature set
  • Affordable 1st-year options
  • User-friendly interface
  • Up to $1 million in reimbursement

At first look, LifeLock seems to offer a quite sturdy service. It’s hard not to get swept off when someone’s offering you to monitor your credit on all 3 credit bureaus and guarantee a maximum of $1 million if your identity is stolen. 

But what else can LifeLock offer?

Features

LifeLock has perhaps the largest feature set among all ID theft protection services. 

Monitoring

With the top subscription, you’ll have your credit monitored through three major credit-reporting agencies – Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. LifeLock will also keep an eye out for anyone who uses your social security number regardless of your plan. And if there are any changes, they’ll notify you via a phone call, text, email, or push notification. 

Block Cyberthreats

Norton LifeLock claims to block over 7 million threats on average every day. That’s impressive and maybe, a bit scary at the same time.

Recovery Services

LifeLock has a solid identity restoration process in case your data gets compromised. This includes, but is not limited to, the insurance, reimbursement for stolen funds, and credit report restoration.

Norton 360 antivirus

Norton 360 is available as part of the higher tier plans, ensuring your 360-degree protection.

VPN

While this feature is part of the upper tiers, a VPN is always a nice addition. It makes your data hard to track.

ID Theft Insurance

LifeLock provides up to $25,000 as compensation for stolen funds to Standard members, $100,000 to those on the Advantage plan, and as much as $1 million to Ultimate Plus subscribers. That’s by far the highest we’ve come across in an ID theft protection program.

If necessary, they also provide attorneys for your identity restoration. Or if not, they pay the industry standard of up to $1 million for legal charges on all slabs. 

Mobile Apps

The app is designed for easy access for those who operate mostly through their mobile devices.  You can find it on both the App Store and Play Store. It’s free to download. 

With the mobile app, you can receive alerts and notifications directly to your mobile device. Alerts come in the form of push notifications and the app interface is well designed keeping simplicity and professionalism in mind.

Customer Support

LifeLock offers 24/7 customer service to all its users via live chat and phone. In our experience, the agents were helpful and prompt, resolving issues quickly. If you’re more of a DIY kind of a person, the LifeLock ID theft protection service has a rich knowledge base in place too.

Pricing 

LifeLock doesn’t have a free trial, although you can utilize their 60-day money-back guarantee if you’re dissatisfied with their service. With that in mind, let’s look at their plans.

  • STANDARD: $9.99 per month for the first year
  • ADVANTAGE: $ 17.99 per month for the first year
  • ULTIMATE PLUS: $ 25.99 per month for the first year

Verdict

LifeLock is a multi-level service – it not only provides identity theft notification and resolution but also has a solid credit monitoring system in place. It has a robust feature set, and although the higher tiers are quite expensive, the Select plan is a great option. If you’re looking for a versatile ID theft protection, look no further.

Identity Guard
Identity Guard

BEST FOR

Credit monitoring and child protection features

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  • IBM Watson AI Scanning
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Good insurance policy
  • Free credit score

Identity Guard is a highly competent service that offers a set of monitoring tools that are optimized for people who care about their credit. It was launched in 2013, and since then it has grown to become perhaps the most consistently well-reviewed ID theft protection service on the market.

Features

Let’s take a look at some of its other features:

Constant Scanning 

Identity Guard monitors millions of pieces of information using IBM Watson’s powerful scanning to detect threats so as to keep you safe.

Quick Alerts 

As soon as the service detects any threat, it notifies you via email and via mobile app push notifications.

General Alerts

Identity Guard monitors you of all activity related to you, be it change of accounts, usage on the dark web or any other relevant information. You’ll get notifications about those on the aforementioned channels.

ID Theft Insurance

Every plan of Identity Guard comes with a $1 million insurance and reimbursement of stolen funds. This means that, apart from the direct monetary loss you suffered, the insurance shall cover all legal and administrative charges incurred, subject to approval.

Mobile Apps

If you’re looking for a versatile and sleek  ID theft protection app, Identity Guard can help. But it is functional – it emphasizes credit scores and credit monitoring. Yet, information about banking issues, fraud, credit card problems and actual identity theft are quite limited except for the information reported through a credit agency.

Customer Support

No matter whether you sport fraudulent charges or have a minor doubt about your account, you can contact the support team via phone. Although email service is available, it’s not very reliable in terms of personal queries.

For non-urgent queries, you can contact Identity Guard between 8:00 am to 11:00 pm, Monday to Friday, but agents will be present 24/7 for everything urgent.

Pricing 

With Identity Guard, you get plans that work for both individuals and families. Both options have three tires:

For Individuals:

  • Value: $8.99 per month
  • Total: $19.99 per month
  • Premier: $29.99 per month

For Family: 

  • Value: $14.99 per month
  • Total: $29.99 per month
  • Premier: $39.99 per month

That said, all plans include a case manager, identity and account monitoring and a $1 million insurance policy.

Verdict

Identity Guard is one of the best ID theft protection services available, and it owes the title to its excellent insurance policy. The solution is user-friendly, affordable and the customer support team is top-notch – a full-on success formula.

IdentityForce
IdentityForce

BEST FOR

Families and office teams

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  • A broad set of features
  • Comprehensive monitoring
  • Insurance protection for all plans
  • Easy to use

IdentityForce from Sontiq offers proven high-quality service. They have highly advanced detection technology, and with over 40 years of experience, they get the job done. What’s more, they offer $1 million in insurance which makes them a trusted service by millions of people, including the US government itself.

Features

As you go through the diverse options on IdentityForce, the first thing you’ll notice is that this service isn’t short on features. 

Monitor Payday Loans

IdentityForce monitors your accounts, looking for someone who has used your identity to secure a monetary loan. It will alert you whenever there’s such activity.

Malware and Phishing Protection

Most other ID theft protection services offer malware and phishing protection as a separate product. IdentityForce gives it as a part of the bundle, with no additional charges.

ID Theft Insurance

IdentityForce has 2 premium plans in place, both of which offer up to $1 million in insurance coverage. If either your bank accounts or your credit cards get compromised, you can count on the company to recover your expenses and lost wages.

Mobile Apps

IdentityForce’s mobile app stands out with a gorgeous user interface.

All the information presented on the app is simplified, making it easy to enter info like your driver’s license number, passport data, and other personal data. The dashboard is easy to navigate – it lays out all the options with a row of icons on the left and other large sections for dealing with credit checks, auto loans, bank information, retirement packages, etc.

Customer Support

IdentityForce has a comprehensive online help center, which many users find helpful. It answers any and all questions you might have about the service’s features like ChildWatch etc. You can also always use the online form or ring them using their phone number, or email address too. Their agents will be ready to help you 24/7.

Pricing 

IdentityForce offers you 2 major plans: UltraSecure, and UltraSecure + Credit. 

  • UltraSecure – $17.99 per month and $179.90 per year
  • UltraSecure + Credit – $23.99 per month or $239.90 per year

There’s a 30-day free trial included in IdentityForce’s ID theft protection UltraSecure plan. You’ll get 24/7 monitoring of your personal information and alerts, if your data is compromised. The UltraSecure + Credit plan provides all the benefits of the UltraSecure plan with an extra 3-bureau credit monitoring, scores, reports, credit score simulator, etc.

Verdict

IdentityForce takes the extra step when it comes to protecting your privacy online. For that, it offers perks that go beyond simple credit check monitoring features, identity theft insurance and malware blockers. They offer $1 million in insurance, a well-designed app interface and some pretty neat extras. Definitely worth the shot.

myFICO
myFICO

BEST FOR

Individuals with low credit score

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  • Powerful features
  • ID theft simulator
  • Clean interface
  • Comprehensive credit reporting

FICO’s scores are almost legendary – from auto to mortgage, they cover it all. The label’s consumer division, myFico, offers monitoring, reporting and identity protection services. If you’re looking for the crème de la crème, myFico might just be it.

Features

Let’s take a look at some of myFico’s best features:

Identity Restoration

Apart from the insurance coverage, myFICO’s ID theft protection service will restore your identity if ever it gets in the hands of some criminal.

ID Theft Insurance

myFICO offers up to the standard $1 million in identity theft insurance. This covers the cost of disputes related to fraud including charges such as attorney’s fees. Unfortunately, myFICO doesn’t cover direct financial losses in case a fraud gets a credit card in your name and SSN.

Customized Scores 

Creditors have diversified criteria that help determine whether you’re eligible for a particular loan. myFICO can customize this information according to the loan you’re looking to get.

Credit Scores and Fraud Alerts 

myFICO is always monitoring your financial health and notifying you if ever anything goes wrong. This is a nifty feature, given that you wouldn’t know if your credit score has changed unless you’re watching your credit report regularly.

Mobile Apps

myFICO’s mobile app looks and feels more professional than most of the ID theft protection apps we’ve tested. All the information is presented in a colourful and clear format. Given all the benefits and features it has in store for its users, we’d say that myFICO justifies definitely lives up to its name.

Customer Support

myFICO’s customer service is available through the weekdays Monday to Saturday from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, Pacific Time. That said, their ID theft protection service line is live 24/7 for users who need recovery services and need to get in touch with an agent ASAP.

Pricing 

myFICO offers you 3 paid plans:

  • Basic: $19.95 per month, with single bureau (Experian) coverage, with data that updates every month. Identity monitoring is not included in this plan.
  • Advanced: $29.95 per month, covering all 3 bureaus and data that updates every 3 months.
  • Premier: $39.95 per month, with data that updates every month, and everything that the Advanced plan covers.

All these plans include FICO scores for mortgages and auto loans, credit reports, score and credit monitoring, 24/7 identity restoration and $1 million in identity theft insurance.

Verdict

myFICO is about to reach FICO’s legendary status. It will help you improve your credit score, monitor all your available data and notify you, in case anything goes wrong. The wonderful mobile app is an added bonus. So, if you’re looking for the best ID theft protection, definitely consider myFICO.

Complete ID
Complete ID

BEST FOR

Privacy-minded individuals on a budget

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  • Affordable plans
  • 3-Bureau Credit Monitoring
  • Two-factor authentication
  • Credit Score Graphs

Complete ID is a robust identity monitoring and recovery service that’s great for those on a budget. Complete ID provides comprehensive monitoring and will immediately notify you if anything fishy is happening.

Features

Complete ID has a ton of features to show off.

Monitoring

Complete ID gives you the option to include more sensitive information like your bank and credit card details, medical details, etc.

Neighbourhood Watch

Basically, this is sex offender registry monitoring. It’s standard in most of the ID theft protection services.

Alerts

Complete ID searches for any suspicious activity happening with your name tied to it. It even covers the dark web. If it finds anything, you get alerted. In our experience, these alerts (emails and push notifications) aren’t as quick as we wished, but they got the job done.

ID Theft Insurance

If someone takes a loan or a credit card debt in your name, even an early detection can’t undo the damage. Complete ID users enjoy the benefit of up to $1 million in coverage against stolen funds, lost wages, attorney charges and whatnot.

Mobile Apps

Everything about the app is straightforward. The interface could use some work in terms of customizations. For instance, there’s no provision to switch up your alert settings like some of the other top ID theft protection companies.

That said, Complete ID shows you your credit scores since you signed up on their platform on a graph. Apart from that, the app uses two-factor authentication, making it more secure.

Customer Support

Complete ID provides around the clock support to its users. Any user who has become a victim to identity theft is designated a restoration specialist from the company. They walk you through the entire restoration process.

You can also refer to their online self-help section for the potential steps you may have to take in such a situation. Nonetheless, in times of trouble, specialists can be granted the limited power of attornies which allows them to take necessary action on your behalf.

Pricing 

Complete ID has 2 major plans for its users.

  • Executive Members: $8.99 per month per person
  • Business and Gold Star Members: $13.99 per month per person

The Executive Members plan includes most of the features all of the best identity theft protection companies offer, along with the $1 million in insurance coverage and credit monitoring from 3 different credit bureaus.

Verdict

If you’re a Costco member (or want to be one) and genuinely care about your credit reports and your identity theft protection, choosing Complete ID is a no-brainer. It’s one of the most cost-effective services in all respects.

ID Watchdog
ID Watchdog

BEST FOR

Individuals who want to monitor their credit scores and need assistance in identity recovery

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  • Great interface
  • Affordable
  • Effective resolution of identity thefts
  • Real-time alerts

ID Watchdog uses monitoring tools to reduce its chances of any identity theft from happening. It’s effective, has a great interface and, most importantly, it’s not heavy on the pocket. 

But is it the best choice for you?

Features

Let’s see what ID Watchdog has to offer in terms of features.

Credit Reports

ID Watchdog sends all its user’s monthly credit reports from all the 3 bureaus – daily reports from Equifax and monthly reports from Experian and TransUnion.

Identity Monitoring

The service monitors all high-risk transactions, public reports, dark web, address change requests, and more.

Solicitation Reduction

ID Watchdog can significantly reduce the emails and phone calls that you might be getting from telemarketing companies by putting you on the National Do Not Call Registry. While not a must-have, it sure is a nice option.

ID Theft Insurance

The American International Group has underwritten ID Watchdog’s $1 million identity theft insurance. Just like most other best identity theft protection plans, this insurance doesn’t cover reimbursement for direct financial losses of any kind, under any jurisdiction.

Mobile Apps

The mobile app is part of both subscriptions of ID Watchdog. It has all features in-built, including real-time fraud alerts. If you’re looking for previous alerts, they can be found in the ‘History’ section, where you can also find your old credit scores. 

The mobile app also allows you to access your wallet in case you’re worried about theft or any other kind of loss through fraud. 

The best part about the app is its interface. It breaks the stereotype of the traditional best identity theft protection software interfaces. The home screen has the option to run the app like a virus scanning tool that monitors the dark web, your credit scores, and more.

Customer Support

ID Watchdog provides 24/7 customer support. The support team claims to speak 100 languages. You can reach them via phone and email.

The team is prompt and friendly and solved our issues immediately and professionally. They even encourage you to contact them if ever you receive alerts about potential crimes.

Pricing 

If you’re on an annual plan and want to stop using ID Watchdog, the company shall refund you the amount for all the unused months. Not for partial months, though.

  • ID Watchdog Plus: $14.95 per month for individuals and $ 25.95 per month for families
  • ID Watchdog Platinum: $19.95 per month for individuals and $34.95 per month for families

Both plans feature dark web monitoring, high-risk transaction monitoring, subprime loan monitoring, public records monitoring, USPS change of address monitoring and identity profile report.

Verdict

ID Watchdog is for those, needing an affordable service. You’ll be in good hands with their monitoring features, identity profile reports and friendly support team.

Experian IdentityWorks
Experian IdentityWorks

BEST FOR

Fraud prevention by locking/unlocking Experian credit reports

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  • Option to lock/unlock Experian credit reports
  • Free trial available
  • Comprehensive material for self-help
  • Frequent alerts

IdentityWorks is among the best identity theft protection services. Experian, a major credit reporting bureau in the US, is behind it. It monitors your court records, loans, social networks, etc. It also has a 30-day free trial, which allows you to test some of the perks.

Features

Let’s take a sneak peek into some of IdentityWorks’ features.

Court Records 

IdentityWorks makes it a point to alert you if there are any crimes committed and reported falsely in your name. It scans court records for your personal information being associated with events as minor as traffic rules violations to misdemeanors and felonies (and more). It works as a background check by using public records, which comes in handy. 

Payday Loan Monitoring 

This feature shall alert you if someone tries to make fraudulent attempts to apply for non-credit loans like payday on your account.

Experian CreditLock 

This is one of the most unique features that we’ve come across in ID theft protection services. The Experian CreditLock allows IdentityWorks users to lock and unlock their Experian credit files, while getting real-time alerts whenever anyone enquires about your credit.

Social Network Monitoring

This is yet another unique feature. It notifies you whenever your name is mentioned in social media platforms with any risky word that may tarnish your reputation.

ID Theft Insurance

It’s fair to say that IdentityWorks can’t protect you 100% against cyber fraud. But depending on your subscription, you might be eligible for either a $500,000 or $1 million insurance/reimbursement.

Mobile Apps

The Experian Credit Report app is available on both Android and iOS. The interface is minimal — both in terms of appearance and functionalities. While it’s quite straightforward when you’re checking your credit scores and reports, there’s not much else you can do. It’s something Experian needs to work on.

Customer Support

Customer support isn’t IdentityWatch’s strong suit. When you visit their website, your options are pretty much limited to the online self-help centre. Although that section is comprehensive, we couldn’t find any option for live chat or email. Very disappointing.

Pricing 

IdentityWorks has a 30-day free trial, with almost all the features available. The paid plans are, as follows:

  • IdentityWorks Plus: $9.99 per month per person, $14.99 for 1 adult and up to 10 children, and $19.99 for 2 adults and as many as 10 children.
  • IdentityWorks Premium: $19.99 per month per person, $24.99 for 1 adult and up to 10 children, and $29.99 for 2 adults and as many as 10 children.

If you purchase their service by paying annually, you may save 17% on the monthly charges.

Verdict

Experian IdentityWorks is powerful enough to make it to the best identity theft protection in 2020 list. It’s designed with everyday users in mind. IdentityWorks has hundreds of informational blogs, which will help you educate yourself on protecting your data against identity theft. Apart from that, they provide rich service and industry-standard insurance. If you can look past the mobile app and the customer support service, they are a pretty good choice.

PrivacyGuard
PrivacyGuard

BEST FOR

Credit monitoring and identity theft protection services

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  • Reasonable pricing
  • Comprehensive credit and identity monitoring
  • 3-Bureau monthly credit reports
  • SSN Monitoring

If you’re concerned about your privacy and take identity theft seriously, you may want to take a look at PrivacyGuard. It is one of the best ID theft protection services you can find on the market. Although no service can actually prevent identity theft or catch fraudsters in the act, PrivacyGuard can very well monitor your identity and alert you if it detects any suspicious activity. 

Features

PrivacyGuard has a ton of features that you can utilize to protect your identity and credit scores. 

Monthly Triple-Bureau Credit Reports and Scores

PrivacyGuard sends you monthly reports from the 3 credit reporting bureaus, allowing you to keep track of your performance.

24/7 Triple-Bureau Daily Credit Monitoring

PrivacyGuard monitors your credit scores all the time, looking for unusual shifts, as they determine an event when identity theft may have occurred. This is a standard feature for the best identity theft protection services, and PrivacyGuard makes no exception. 

Public and Dark Web Scanning

Be it your personal information or your bank details, if it gets in the wrong hands, it may find its way on some shady public domain or even on the dark web. PrivacyGuard does a fine job scanning all such domains and alerting you as soon as it detects anything shady.

ID Theft Insurance

PrivacyGuard offers up to $1 million in insurance under its ID Protection and Total Protection plans. This insurance reimburses users for all valid expenses made related to the identity theft resolution. 

Mobile Apps

PrivacyGuard’s mobile app can be found under the name of Digital Protection on both the App Store and Google Play Store. Through this app, you can check whether your identity has been compromised or your credit score harmed, while on the go.

The app also provides a secure mobile browser that protects you against phishing attacks. The secure keyboard sees to it that your device doesn’t get infected by malware and that no data finds its way to the cloud.

Customer Support

You can contact the PrivacyGuard support team via phone, or email. Keep in mind that if you choose the latter, it might take them 5-7 business days to respond. You can check out their knowledge base for FAQs, if your issue is not urgent.

Pricing 

PrivacyGuard offers you a 14-day trial, for which you’ll have to pay $1. After it expires, you can choose from:

  • Identity Protection: $9.99 per month. Includes monitoring your information for signs of identity theft.
  • Credit Protection: $19.99 per month. Includes Triple Bureau Credit Reports, Scores and more.
  • Total Protection: $24.99 per month. Includes the features of Identity Protection and Credit Protection in one plan.

All these plans include access to the PrivacyGuard app, text and email alerts, secure browser and prompt and dedicated ID Fraud Resolution specialists.

Verdict

PrivacyGuard is among the best identity theft protection services that we’ve found on the US market. They have a rich website, with a great self-help section if you get stuck somewhere. Although their email service could use some work, getting this service, considering everything else, would be a fine choice.

IDShield
IDShield

BEST FOR

Privacy-minded individuals or families

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  • 30-Day Free Trial
  • Affordable
  • Easy to use
  • Various kinds of alerts

IDShield does a great job alerting you if your personal information gets exposed to the wrong crowd. It does so by scanning the web and the court records for your data (financial or otherwise). It also keeps an eye on the dark web.

Features

IDShield has some of the best features in town. 

Dark Web Monitoring 

IDShield continuously monitors the dark web for any signs of your data and immediately alerts you if it finds anything.

SSN Skip Trace

This nifty feature from IDShield checks for records of multiple usages of your social security number.

Court Records Monitoring

IDShield ID theft protection scans millions of US court records looking for your data. This is inclusive of files from local, federal, and state courts and even the Department of Corrections.

Payday Loans

IDShield monitors all events where some impersonator tries to draw funds using your name.

ID Theft Insurance

IDShield’s insurance service is an industry-standard (up to $1 million for individuals and $2 million for families). This payout doesn’t cover direct loss in funds. It is good for subscriber’s credit restoration.

Mobile Apps

If you’re more of an on-the-go kind of a person, you can get your hands on the IDShield mobile app from both the App Store or the Play Store. The app comes with two-factor authentication. Once you’ve set it up, there’s a brief on-screen tutorial.

The app gives you the option to turn on/off the sex-offenders search, social media scanning, and more. It also shows you your credit score from TransUnion. The app is nice and gets the job done.

Customer Support

It’s crucial to choose a company with flawless customer service, especially in matters of identity theft. You can take a look at IDShield’s FAQ section, or you can contact the support team via live chat, email or phone. Their agents are prompt and overall helpful and catered to our ID theft protection queries promptly.

Pricing 

IDShield has priced its plans slightly differently from others, segregating them on the basis of the number of bureaus’ reports that the company will be monitoring for you. 

  • $13.95 for 1 bureau (Transunion), and $17.95 for all 3 bureaus
  • $26.95 for 1 bureau (Transunion), and $32.95 for all 3 bureaus

All plans come with a 30-day free trial.

Verdict

IDShield gets a lot done. With a wide variety of features at an affordable price point, it is among the best choices you can make, in terms of ID theft protection.

  • Comprehensive cyber monitoring
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Always-on SSN tracing
  • Bank account monitoring

Identity Theft Protection is a McAfee product, which alone means something. It watches your social media, court records and monitors your credit score. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg! It’s all wrapped up with a ribbon of great pricing, which honestly impressed us.

Features

McAfee offers some nifty features for ID theft protection.

Cyber Monitoring

McAfee claims to patrol more than 600,000 digital black markets including the dark web, looking for your personal information – SSN, email, etc.

Credit Monitoring

McAfee monitors the Experian bureau on its Standard plan and covers all 3 of them on its Premium package.

SSN Trace

McAfee tracks down identity fraud, looking for synthetic identities using your Social Security Number.

ID Theft Insurance

McAfee offers up to $1 million in insurance cover for legal expenses in your identity restoration. They also give as much as $10,000 in direct stolen funds reimbursement — a rare sight in this sector.

Mobile Apps

ID theft protection is part of the Mobile Security package of McAfee. It also includes a VPN and an antivirus package. The app interface is clean and displays all the features needed, so it’s quite easy to navigate.

Customer Support

The support agents will be available 24/7 to help you out. However, it takes time to figure out how to contact the team and this is frankly annoying.  For consumer support, there’s a website. For Enterprise, you get phone support too. You can use the virtual assistant if your problem doesn’t require human help. There’s a resource base on the website and you can also check in with the community (link on the site) – other users might be able to help you, too.

Pricing 

McAfee has some of the most competitive pricing options among the best identity theft protection programs

  • Identity Theft Protection STANDARD: $0.99 for the first month, and $69.99 for the first year.
  • Identity Theft Protection PLUS: $4.99 for the first month, and $139.99 for the first year.
  • Identity Theft Protection PREMIUM: $9.99 for the first month, and $209.99 for the first year.

Verdict

McAfee’s Identity Theft Protection Standard is among the best options for US citizens. This service is among the few to actually pay in stolen funds apart from insurance coverage.

Best ID Theft Protection for 2020

Every ID theft protection service has its unique selling points. Let’s see what the top ID theft protection services  on our list excel at:

  • LifeLock – Best overall ID theft protection 
  • Identity Guard – Best Value Identity Theft Protection Overall
  • IdentityForce – Best Phishing Protection
  • myFICO – Best for credit score improvement
  • Complete ID – Best budget ID theft protection
  • ID Watchdog – Best ID Theft Resolution Service
  • Experian IdentityWorks – Best Credit Monitoring
  • PrivacyGuard – Best credit monitoring
  • IDShield – Best Family Plans and restoration
  • McAfee Identity Theft Protection – Best Antivirus Bundling

What Is Identity Theft?

Identity theft happens when someone uses your data, impersonating you, making purchases on your account, getting medical care at your expense, committing crimes, etc. ID theft can affect your credit score, ruin your medical records, college records, retirement funds, and yes — reputation.  Often, it’s a really complicated issue to resolve.

One of the main reasons it happens is because most of our information is public. This makes it easy for others to get their hands on our email addresses, social media accounts, phone numbers and whatnot. If reports are to be believed, one-third of adults admit to sharing their login credentials with others. It affects children most of all, because they are not yet aware of the dangers. 

Types of Identity Theft

Did you know that there are different types of identity theft?

Financial Identity Theft 

This is among the most common forms of identity theft. The fraudster gets his hands on your credit card details and makes a purchase without your knowledge.

You can go through your monthly statements and look for irregularities in purchases. The best identity theft protection services can do it for you by monitoring the 3 credit reporting bureaus namely Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

Tax Identity Theft 

This is where a fraudster uses your personal information to file for a tax return on your behalf. You can prevent this from happening by staying on the lookout for calls/texts/emails from the IRS.

Medical Identity Theft 

Imagine a fraudster claiming medical care in a hospital or a similar institution with your name. You can prevent this from happening by regularly reviewing statements from your insurer and reporting any irregularities.

Employment Identity Theft 

A criminal uses your information to get past background checks in a company while filing for employment. The best way out to prevent this is to stay alert if you ever receive phone calls from employers looking for information on your background.

Child Identity Theft 

Small children and even teenagers are at the highest risk of identity theft because their credit report is a clean slate and can be manipulated. Since they are children, they don’t even bother to check their reports. ID theft protection for children consists of checking the 3 bureaus whether your child has a credit report and take requisite action like putting a security freeze.

Senior Identity Theft 

Senior citizens tend to be more trusting, which makes it easier for them to get scammed. It’s no different than other ID theft schemes, but it might lead to more trouble. It’s best, as a senior citizen, to stay alert about the information you put out on social media or elsewhere.

What Is Identity Theft Protection and How Does It Work?

Not too long ago, in 2018, 450 thousand identity theft reports were filed with over $488 million in losses. Don’t be careless with your data, or it might end up for grabs in the corners on the dark web.

Your best bet is investing in ID theft protection. The companies that provide this service can monitor the dark web, keep an eye on your credit card score, recover your information and reimburse you for the expenses made in the process of you being able to get it done.

What Is Identity Theft Insurance?

Identity theft insurance covers all the miscellaneous expenses needed when trying to restore your stolen identity. If you’re a victim of identity theft and have been paying for an ID theft protection, you’re supposed to get reimbursed for the money spent on reclaiming your financial identity or for repairing your credit report (depending on the company’s policies).

How to Choose the Best ID Theft Protection?

Staying on your toes, sharing limited information, checking reports — there’s only so much you can do to protect your identity from frauds. Your best bet here would be to hand this over to the professionals. But how to choose the best ones?

Monitoring 

24/7 monitoring is the ultimate requirement. This includes but shouldn’t be limited to monitoring bank accounts, credit cards, court records, tax records, addresses, dark web, etc.

Restoration 

If you’ve been a victim of identity theft, you must know that if a breach isn’t dealt with in time, the damage might take years to fix. With that in mind, it’s preferable to have your identity restored on time. Turn to suitable services that know how to deal with such issues.

Features 

When looking for ID theft protection services, know that hackers and frauds can get access to your information from many different entry points. So, a service that scans all such points would be the go-to choice.

Pricing

Our budgets are always the first thing we consider when investing. You shouldn’t have to break the bank to get the best identity theft protection. Thankfully, our list has a lot of affordable options to choose from.

How Can You Protect Yourself From ID Theft? (Practical Tips)

While it’s impossible (as of 2020) to prevent identity theft entirely, let’s take a look at what you can do to minimize the risk:

  • Review credit reports monthly to look for irregularities
  • Check texts, emails daily and never miss a notification
  • Collect mails promptly to prevent it from getting in the wrong hands
  • Freeze your credit to prevent anyone from viewing your reports and later open an account, take a loan in your name
  • Enable two-factor authentication so as to add an extra layer of security over your data

Wrapping Up 

ID theft protection has become a necessity these days. All of us are constantly sharing huge amounts of data online and we never know where it might end up. You can entirely stop ID thieves, but you can minimize the damage. Invest in proper service and rest assured that they’re doing everything in their power to keep you safe.

FAQ

How can I protect my identity for free?

Almost all the best identity theft protection services are paid. There are a lot of affordable options and we strongly advise you to invest in one. However, if you prefer to take the wheel, here’s what you can do:

  • Use strong passwords.
  • Regularly check credit reports.
  • Be careful what you post on social media.
  • Keep important documents with sensitive data safe.
  • Monitor your finances closely.
How can I find out if someone is using my identity?

You can choose an identity theft protection service that checks all the records from the 3 bureaus and your bank for signs of ID theft. You can also visit www.identitytheft.gov for assistance.

Should I get ID theft protection?

The short answer is, yes. 

As mentioned, we tend to post personal and sensitive information quite carelessly. It’s also not that hard for hackers to obtain our data. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. Investing in ID theft protection is one of the best ways to do it.

Which is better - LifeLock or Identity Guard?

Both are great, it boils down to personal preference and budget.

What is the best ID theft protection?

Here are the best ID theft protection services:

  • LifeLock
  • Identity Guard
  • IdentityForce
  • myFICO
  • Complete ID
  • ID Watchdog
  • Experian IdentityWorks
  • PrivacyGuard
  • IDShield
  • McAfee Identity Theft Protection Standard